Monday, 14 January 2013
Hi everyone its been a year since my Long Walk with all its trials and tribulations, all the love discovered found and shared, the pain endured and the brief but personal glory upon arrival at the Cathedral in Santiago De Compostella. I very much resonate with the statement It's Not the Destination that is important its for sure the Glory of the Ride. Tread the Earth Lightly my friends and please leave as little or No Trace behind, (this includes all the brain deads that walk the Way of St James and leave their toilet paper strewn everywhere!). The World didn't end on December 21/2012 like predicted. Fate should also have it that in the Summer last year I returned to the Camino but this time i happen to be riding on a Honda CB1300 Motorbike the journey from St Jean-Pied-Le-Port to Gallicia in what seemed a blink of an eye, then travelling far down into Portugal to the Algarve on this lovely machine, upon returning to the UK two Months later 4000 miles had been clocked up on the milometer, but that is maybe another story folks!. Plans for this year i have many so maybe post something at a later date for you all. Thank You for taking the precious time to enjoy my Blogs too
Thursday, 17 May 2012
Hi folks it has been a while since I have posted anything on my blog but I needed to process the Pilgrimage i partook in my head and also to heal my poor suffering feet after all the abuse I gave them pounding the many kilometres that I walked to Santiago, 1000ks in all!. I realised that nothing can prepare the body and mind to walk the Camino De Santiago in all its length, almost everyone that I met along the way seemed to be suffering from the effects of blisters callouses and sores on their feet, I also developed the painful condition of something i later found out was plantar fasciitis, or policeman’s flat feet!. Many people I chatted with also seemed to be suffering from painful Tendonitis in their knees and ankles and were trying to manage the pain each day whilst they were walking. On the many plus side of things I found that the peace I found myself in, walking on my own every day was priceless mind expanding and simply amazing. Some days I would be walking for many hours in such a state of harmony and peace with only with the sounds of nature surrounding me, and because I was walking slowly I noticed almost every very acute detail along the path, ranging from the odd wild strawberry growing in a little pocket of sunshine, to watching many numerous birds of prey soaring high above me in the sky. Another great thing about walking along the Camino is the comradeship felt with the many other Pilgrims all walking and heading towards the common goal of Santiago De Compostella, I feel that we are all connected in some way towards getting there and everyone I meet collectively helps each other out emotionally and spiritually even if they don’t realise that they are doing this, I can now understand how so many pilgrims come along, or are drawn to come this ancient pathway. Most of the Albergies I stayed at whilst walking to Santiago were modern, comfortable and very welcoming, most with good facilities and many of the hospitaleras running them went out of their way to make the many pilgrim’s feel comfy and at home when they arrived after a tiresome days walk. The only complaint I have about the albergies is that all of them are making huge profits from the pilgrims that pass through each day and then not reinvesting the profits into the albergies so one can simply not help the feeling of being a cash cow. The other thing that I noticed whilst walking along was that a lot of the pilgrims had huge rucksacks on their backs filled with who knows what!, this seemed to reflect the amount of baggage they carried in their minds too, as the ones i met that carried little seemed more at peace, one comes to realise as one walks that not too much is needed in material things to survive, all we really need in life is good suitable clothing for the climate were in, good food, and clean water, and a comfy place to sleep at night, that’s all, anything else is all material wants not needs!. I tried many ways of managing the many blisters and a corn I suffered with, at the end of each day I would thread cotton onto a sterilised needle and then pierce the blister with it leaving the cotton hanging out of each end allowing the blister to drain overnight I also rubbed alcohol onto the other parts of my feet that didn’t have the blisters, and I would then give my feet a good massage. I then found that the blisters reappeared by the end of the next days walk so the very same process was then repeated again. May i say i hope you have enjoyed reading this blog in its entirety. Since returning to the UK I have had many ideas running around in my head as to what adventures I should embark on in the near future, I am always open to suggestions from anyone that manages to enjoy reading my posts on here. I am currently focusing on manifesting monetary abundance so any donations are gratefully received, hit the donate button on the right of this page.
Monday, 16 April 2012
9/10th of April 2012 Melide to Santiago de Compostela i made it to Santiago and the Cathedral feeling glad to have finished but also simply physically unable to walk one step further. My feet had decided not to go back in my boots, i made a mental note and reminder to myself never to buy this brand again, the five blisters on my feet i had nursed all the way from Leon. Upon entering the Cathedral i could not walk around i simply sat on a pew somewhere discreet and wept like the tide was on its way out. I just sat outside of the cathedral in Santiago for many hours after with my sandals off the shoes were thrown away to one side of me and throbbing feet being aired,like the many other pilgrims sat all around the huge square that all seem when i look at them to have something wrong with either their feet or something on a part of their bodies, but all with looks of serenity and relief. I eventually hobble off a few hours later to go find the pilgrims office and collect my Compostela certificate and be formally congratulated by the assistant and i am so relieved to have finished this walk that i started what seemed so long ago and words simply cannot describe how elated i fell at this moment.I seek out one of the lovely restaurants for some good food for I seriously need to take some time out now so i will come back on here at some point in the future and write and expand some more,i appreciate any feedback and comments on any of these posts.......................
8th of April 2012 Portamarin to Palais de Rel then onto Melide. I feel good today after the rest i managed to secure yesterday in the fleshly laundered sheeted bed and after a good breakfast at the hotel,after breakfast i head out from the hotel and head out of the high street trying to make the yellow arrows out along the way,the temperature is colder today theirs a thick fog all around me and i have got a jumper and my jacket on and also my thinsulate hat it that cold,my feet are still sore and the blisters seem to be still there despite using dofferant methods all along the way like smothering my feet in vasaline then when i lost that a compeed speed stick,all of these methods being unsucessfull in dealing with my blisters. The Camino overnight has changed from being a very pleasent solitary experience to one of seing huge parties of supported groups of pilgrims all wandering along in throngs chatting at the tops of their voicesexcercising their overinflatted egos,they dont carry any bag on their backs and all their gear is transported along for them in vans that constantly pass by them.These pilgrims then stop at lunchtime at a predestined place where their lunch is then all laid out in front of them on a table, The graffiti has increased along this part of the route too every sign seems to be covered in little tags. The swirling mist eventually burns itself up by the sun by about 1pm and it becomes lovely and warm and i take my jacket of and put it back into my bag,i even manage at one point ot find a little peace in a field to take my shoes off and earth myself for a while,al i could hear the whole time i lay there was shouts from the pilgrims at me for a "buen Camino". My blisters are killing me and i finally reach Palais de Rel at about 4:30pm closely followed and surrounded by the loud throngs of many merry pilgrim groups.I enter the main albergie in the town and have to wait at least five minutes for the three Spanish girls in front of me in the Que,when i gave the lady hospitalera my passport to stamp she asks to see my real passport and as i lean down to get it a guy justs pushes past me and gives her a huge stack of maybe 20 passports to stamp and i look and there seems to be a massive crowd now all around me,this i find just a little too much to handle and decide to leave in disgust i walked across the road and had a big bowl of spaghetti bolonaise and an ice cold beer to cool me down,i then decide to get into a taxi which takes me 15ks down the road to a place called Melide,here in this town i was recommended a really good hotel with a great room very modern and very clique and the main thing was i was now away from these hideous crowds,its here on contemplation that i decide i am not enjoying walking this part of the Camino......
3rd of April 2012 Molinaseca to Villafranca 39,700 steps on my stepometer. I found todays walk a little bit difficult because it was a huge distance to travel and also my legs were aching proper bad from coming down of of the mountain yesterday,the weather has seemed to turn a bit today and its cold and also overcast with rain threatening,i plod on the path for many miles till i reach Ponferrada where i get accosted by three very enthusiastic Jehovah witnesses trying to get mt to convert,not knowing to much Spanish help me escape them as none of them spoke any English. After many miles more walking i finally arrive in Villafranca del Bierzo roughly 8 hrs after setting off,extremely tired i like crawl into the albergie called Ave de Phoenix which seems to be a very quirky place somewhere that wouldn't go amiss in the Himalayas,they serve a communal meal at 8 pm for 8 Euros to all the pilgrims and this i found very good and very tasty and the hostel was full with pilgrims staying too,secretly i go off into a dream wishing that tomorrow i will rest with my feet up and maybe treat myself to a hotel,hmm let me see how i feel in the morning........
Friday, 13 April 2012
Sarria to Portomarin. I didnt sleep very well last night as i kept on waking up with a very peculiar pain in my right ankle, the bed i slept in had a plastic cover on it was hilarius every time i moved around on it it squeeked two of the other pilgrims i was sharing the room with snoored like elephants. I left the albergie at about 8amand didnt get very far before being lured into the most lovely italian restaurant/cafe for a lush breakfast of coffee, croisants with jam yogurts, fresh fruits and juice, mmmm delicious.I then attempt to walk out os Sarria in the pouring rain with a horrible pain in mt left ankle. I didnt seem to get to far before the painim getting seriously takes more energy than i can muster to be able to walk on it so decide to call a taxi to take me the rest of todays planned walk of about 20ks to Potomarin. Here i decide to treat myself as its still early like 10 to treat myself to a nice hotel for the night, i cant remember its name but its the only on in Poromarin,the room is immaculate theirs freshly laundered sheets on the bed clean towels in the bathroom, even a piddly little bath. I lay on the bed and fall almost instantly to a well earnt sleep. I come around from my lovely sleep at around 7pm and go out to find some food in the town before i crawl back into bed.
Friday, 6 April 2012
6th April 2012 Triacastela to Sarria 25,800 steps on my stepometer a beautiful walk in nature today I leave the albergie at 7:30 just as it was getting light and the way is peaceful and not too hard going the temperature isn't too cold and slight drizzle rain, the path leads through lush forests of oaks, silver birch and hazel I hear cuckoo's singing and the odd woodpecker sounds, many small streams and rivers, and after a couple of hours solitary walking amounst the sounds of nature the path starts ambling downwards towards Sarria in the distance, I reach the city at about 1pm and decide as it's good Friday to finish here for the day.I find a great albergie called Don Alvardo which is one of the last up the main street on Rua Maior,they have a nice light reading room in the bath plenty of bathrooms one even had a bath and bidet in, their was also an amazing room towards the rear of a nice garden that had a huge Gothic almost like a castle fireplace of which in the evening this had a gorgeous roaring fire in, and as it was good friday many a bottle of herb liquers were tippled after a huge pilgrim meal. a trully Buen Camino.