I got home this morning via Dubai. So pleased to be home. In the end I was quite homesick and missing the familiar; accents, sounds, places, expressions.
This will have changed me in subtle ways; some I can predict, some I can’t.
Would I do the same again?
Tomorrow if I could.
I was pretty shattered the day I arrived in Santiago de Compostela, tired in every way; my feet were sore, my back was sore, my right thigh was sore. The next day I was unwell and I’ve just been recovering ever since. Today I’m well and the residual issues are with my back. I think I was stiff and pulled a muscle putting on my pack after lunch at I think it was Salceda, two days before Santiago de Compostela.
As for what I achieved internally, certainly I struggled for at least a part of nearly every day, and the relentlessness of it contributed to a continual state of alternating tension and relaxation, which I’m unlikely to find again, certainly in such a sustained fashion. I was able to create a simple but satisfying routine of bodily, mental and spiritual components that provided a harmony on which I overlaid the starting and mostly finishing of relationships.
It’s certainly true that relationships on the Camino develop a quick intensity and this in itself is a challenge. It is almost overwhelming at times. And in that regard, home will allow a more sedate approach to the development and maturing of friendships. Many of the friendships I developed will have died with the Camino itself, but I hope that those with Marc, Silas, Patrice, Francis, Xavier and Fréderique, (and perhaps others) can survive the strains of distance and time until we meet again. Thanks also to the dozens of people who have befriended me from Germany, Holland, France, Canada, Italy, Australia and Sweden (there are more too).
A last shout out goes to Joe Macky, with whom I started and with whom I walked the first three weeks. We intended to finish together and share the company of friends and relatives. That didn’t work out, but allowed the space for other relationships to develop.
I had intended to study Te Reo on the Way but never did adequately find the time or space. I did however, in the end get a routine of Karakia Timatanga, Karakia Whakamutunga, waiata and reflection that I hope will provide a structure for my future.
Thanks to everyone who has voiced their support to me or supported Margie. It was the experience of a lifetime.
E Ultreya, E Susseya.