Time flies – some months ago the Camino was quite distant and soon I’m going to start the long walk – or to be more correct, we will start our walk! I’m not doing this alone – eventhough i’m responsible for “the social side”, my wife is absolutely a big, big part of this adventure. So to prepare not just for walking but also eating and some drinking, we had a nice dinner testing some Spannish wine. One ambition with the trip is for us to learn more about wine besides beeing able to differ red wine from white.
So, during the dinner I got the chance of interviewing my wife about the trip. I may say that she was not so impressed about my skills in asking questions, perhaps I should have asked them long time before. But better late than never. So let’s go..
What do you look forward to regarding the Camino?
I look forward to the challenge of the long walk and the experience, but also leaving the daily routines behind. I do like that you have to live with the things you can carry, quite a minimalistic life. And of course, having some chances to taste some good wine and food would be nice.
What do you think will the hardest part with this journey?
Besides my husband? Well, I know that i’m sometimes lose my patience and give up to easy perhaps. However, we have tested the equipment and as last weekend was very warm I know a bit more about walking in the heat. But again, keeping up the endurance is perhaps the most important part, but also the hardest.
How will it be to reach Compostela?
No idea, I do look forward to that day. Being able to arrive there means that I have accomplished a big challenge hopefully learning a lot about myself and my life. But let’s see, you can’t be sure how it will be before you have done it.
We have stopped walking (to have fresh legs when doing the heavy walking), which means that there is some time for doing something else, like working on this page! And I must admit – I like it! Working with IT for over thirty years every day is about endless problems, errors, issues and managing unhappy and disappointed users, managers or whoever I may get in touch with. Therefore, it’s quite nice to be able to just “play-around” with a system, finding new features and functions and hopefully create something that is somewhat useful. As always with IT-systems there are things, that are not working as supposed, but I don’t have to care about it! If there is a plug-in that don’t work just wipe it and try another one.
Found a nice weather plug-in and realized how useful it could be to know more about weather along the Camino. But what has happened? Sweden use to be a cold, rainy spot with sunshine just one or two days during the whole summer. But now it looks to be the opposite. 8 degrees in Compostela and 18 in Stockholm. Walking the last weekends in about 25 degrees I should be happy with temperatures around 15 – but 8 degrees and rain. That could be hard. I’m happy that I bought a good classic Swedish raincoat, Tretorn – it’s so Swedish, it even the flag printed in several places and of course manufactured in China like everything else nowadays!
As understood one part of the Camino is about walking. So, what to concentrate on; the feet or the shoes?
The question is perhaps a bit strange and should the feet fit the shoes or the shoes fit the feet? – Well isn’t it a question about both the feet and the shoes and does it matter how it is, as long as they fit together! Life is more than feet and shoes, it’s about work and non-work, health and non-health and of course everything should be in balance – but what is balance?
Is there a balance between my feet and shoes, if they are both equally unhappy living under a compromise? Or should they be equally happy living the optimal life? Well I have also understood that another part of the Camino is about thinking so perhaps this is something to think about walking in 35 degrees sunshine or 14 degrees with rain…
The Clock is ticking and i’m trying to prepare as much as possible – one part of it is selecting a stone to bring!
I have realized that there are actually quite a few traditions around stones when you are walking the Camino. One of them is to pick up a stone at Montes de Léon (the biggest you can carry) and then drop it at Foncebandon. Another one is about the Iron Cross – here you should drop a stone taken from home. Sounds stupid? At first it may! But when reading about it, i realize that these are the things that perhaps makes the Camino a bit different compared to just a 800 KM long race. Carrying stones isn’t that something we do all the time, of course they are normally not visible and some of us poor bastards carry big ones and some others a bit smaller ones. At least i’m convinced about it – so it’s time to pick one from home! (Or should I order it on the web from Alibaba? Pre-dropped!)
To Combine the traditions and bringing the biggest stone from home is perhaps not a good idea – so I leave this stone alone!
10 Days before Take off! I’m starting to be a bit nervous – is everything under control?
Preparation is one thing, planning is another one. The distance is known, but how long time will it take? You are not driving a car – you are walking! And sometimes in sunshine, sometimes perhaps in rain. So with my walking friend “Runkeeper” i started to measure time. Walking alone in the early mornings, i’ll do about 5 KM an hour, but that’s just for about 2 or 2,5 hours. When walking a bit longer then it’s suddenly about 4 KM! And then with some breaks you are doing perhaps 3 KM or 2 KM an hour…
Doing things without a plan is perhaps not my thing – and one part of the fun is the planning! So early february I bought the Michelin Travelling Guide, then used Booking.com do book the Hotel. Of course i messed things up in the beginning like dates and some places – but finally i think i got it quite fine … I hope! This morning I finalized a nice visual Route Table Plan and calculated the distance. Red alert, and panic mode; i’m going to walk a bit over 40 KM in just one day – how did I plan that? However running around in panic circles, reading the Travelling Guide I realised that I mixed up “San Miguel del Camino” with “San Martin del Camino” – and suddenly the plan was a bit more realistic. I have to be careful reading names, there looks to be a lot of “del Camino” and “del Real Camino” however it’s the full name that matters!
So if you would like to know my plan, just click on the Michelin book below. It’s spiced up with sticker slogans from an AIIM collegue; “Plan Once Succeed Twice” – that’s a very good one!