When I returned I expected lots of questions about the Camino de Santiago. People want to know why we did it, how hard it was, etc. One question that comes up more frequently that I expected was – Would you do it again?
My first answer is most likely. I’ve done it once. I can do it again. I know what worked and what can/should work better – especially training for the hills. However, do I really need to do another one? I think that is a better question.
Each person gets a different answer/result from walking the Camino. I noticed that as I was walking – trying to keep one foot in front of the other – for hours at a time – that my mind was not focused on anything in particular. I forced some questions into my subconscious mind and allowed it to percolate for a while to see what answers I would get.
Our typical day started an hour or two before sunrise. We used flashlights to find our way in the dark. It was cool and quiet, except for the crunching of stones under our shoes. As daylight snuck over the mountains, the local birds let us know they were around. We heard other walkers as they approached from behind; and, just as quickly disappeared in front of us. Other than the ‘Buen Camino!’ greeting, there was little conversation.
It was a quiet journey full of self-reflection and intro-inspection. I knew I wanted to write at least one book on the Camino – something of a photo journal. However, I did not know what else – or – how to incorporate this ongoing experience into something that would add value to other people’s lives. As the days progressed, I would tell Marilyn that a thought jumped between my ears and caught my attention in the middle of the tedium of walking.
My concentration was distracted long enough to answer the question of what to write and what value could be created for my audience. It didn’t stop with one day – it occurred several times. I didn’t turn off the switch that started that thought process. Yes, I will write several books using the Camino de Santiago as the inspiration and example to share with others.