It’s 107 days since I walked in to Santiago de Compostela, having departed from St Jean 40 days before.
And I still reflect on my walk. Almost daily. I still follow the Camino of others on the Camino Forum. And now I’m thinking of my next Camino.
But what has changed if anything? Am I just back into the daily grind? Or are there lasting Camino impacts?
I think it would be hard to spend 40 days on the road, mainly alone, with all that time to think and reflect, and not be changed in some lasting way….
So three and a bit months later, what do I feel has changed for me?
Here are some random thoughts:
- I’m calmer. Not that I really used to get angry or upset before my Camino. But now I’m just more relaxed about things. I certainly don’t stress as much. And to a degree….the Camino provides….still.
- I’ve put on Weight! Well that’s not good. My Camino appetite remained, but not the exercise. I have a feeble excuse in that I finally got around to having my Achilles tendons re scanned. And they are a lot worse than before my Camino. So I’ll need to get into my Camino routine of stretching, icing, physio, etc to reduce the inflammation and pain. Ready for the next Camino!
- I’m Happy Alone. I’ve always been perfectly comfortable with just my own company. But I need to make an effort not to turn into some kind of recluse! That would not be good or healthy… I think it will take a bit more time to ‘re-integrate’ back into being with other people all the time….
- I’m Planning Ahead. Having had a taste of a period without work and responsibility, I now realise my work is not my life. It doesn’t define me. What’s that lovely quote from the Movie. “Dad you don’t choose a life…you live one”. For the last 40 years my work has defined me. Now I need ‘re defining’ ……. A bit of a work in progress. But life beyond full time work is looking more and more attractive.
- More Trips and time out. My wife Pat and I are planning some trips. Including a mini Camino….
- Who’s Important? Another work in progress. Following a strong ‘reminder’ from above when I was kneeling at the Cruz de Ferro. There are others for whom I need to give more time….
- Spiritual Connection. That’s still there, though not as ‘ever present’ as it was whilst walking past Churches and road side crosses every day….pausing to reflect….
- Clothing ….. Oh, and I wear my Camino walking gear to work every day! No, it’s not as mad as it sounds. I only live 1 km from work so I generally walk to work. My Camino gear is very comfortable. And…..my Achilles tendons are still bad and my walking boots have great support and insoles that help a lot. And Yes. If I am visiting clients I put on ‘work wear’……