Dearest Reader (as Whistledown would say),
Thanks for coming on this adventure with me. I've really enjoyed writing this journal/blog and I know it will be a great record of my journey that I will cherish in years to come. Sharing it with you, my Camino family, has made it much more fun than just keeping my own journal. I never would have gotten around to doing that anyway.
I hope you enjoyed our travels. Hopefully I made you smile or giggle occasionally, maybe I gave you some inspiration or the belief that you could try something new or revisit past glories. It's possible someone learnt a thing or two or developed a new interest or became more curious. Most certainly you know me a bit better than you did before. If I can help you in any way to fulfil your own goals, you have only to ask.
Some of you may wonder how the Camino, and the time I've had to reflect upon it, may have changed or impacted me. I can't say that it has significantly, or that my life will be changed forever by the experience, only time will tell if that is the case.
I can say that I am more aware of my lack of health and fitness. This was obvious beforehand of course, but maybe hanging out for six weeks with only fairly healthy people and not achieving my ideal walking goals has highlighted this even more. Whether this is enough to make me change my bad habits remains to be seen. I knew this before I left, and this remains the truth now. The real challenge has always been to come home and maintain any health gains I have made and improve on them. In this sense the Camino was just the beginning.
In terms of the spiritual side of the journey, I have not awoken to new wisdom or knowledge, discovered the meaning of life or the answer to any other of life's riddles. I have however been reminded of some answers that I already knew.
- Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
- There's no place like home. (By home I mean Australia)
- A journey is better shared. While doing the Camino by myself was the right decision, company since I finished the Camino would have made the whole deal sweeter. I remember deciding to only travel with friends a while back but it had slipped my mind. Luckily I got to have special quality time in Rome with Maddie.
And the most important one - Love is all you need, to give love that is.
Writing something is also a childhood dream or a bucket list goal towards which I have done absolutely nothing the last 40 years, not even journalling. This may be a first step in that direction, an unexpected Camino outcome when all else was predictable. Cats of Hydra maybe, a Watership Down inspired adventure!! We shall see.
I also would like to acknowledge my privilege in being able to undertake this journey. Such choices, options and freedoms are not available to all humankind at this stage of our development. I acknowledge the many ways in which I benefit from our past and current culture, systems and practices. I hope I do in some small ways contribute to breaking down barriers and making our land a more equitable one.
And lastly I also wish to thank my amazing husband for being the best partner in life that anyone could ask for, and for being thoughtful enough to give me a shove off on this little episode. And to my Courtney and my Hayden who have grown into competent, capable, caring adults who don't need their mum quite as much any more, enabling me to undertake this journey knowing they will be safe in my absence.
Hasta manana till we meet again.Read more