I’ve been giving myself time to “process” the Camino. But now I’m pretty convinced I’m just procrastinating — and people have been asking about it — so it’s time to get writing again.
I’ve been reintegrating myself into “normal life,” but it’s been a little weird because most of my tutoring clients want to wait to start up again until after I return from next week’s Shaklee conference. And as far as coaching, I haven’t started the ball back rolling yet. I’m still looking at where I want to tweak things, as I continue to reinvent myself.
So, really, this week, I’ve mostly put “life” (work) on hold and have turned to my house and other parts of my life. My sister has been a wonderful support this week. I’ve continued to do my daily “Camino”, now with my sister for an hour or two in the mornings, which has been wonderful for mental processing. We’ve also been reorganizing the whole house, a project she started with my fiancee, even before I’d returned! The kitchen is now the most organized it’s ever been, the living room looks fantastic, and the office is becoming more inviting. We moved a set of the bookshelves into the basement, and I replaced them with a wall of plants!
Another blessing in this transition has been the connections I made through the Camino. I decided I was going to “bare bones” it with technology and get a very minimalistic plan and rely on wifi. (This was supposed to be a spiritual experience, right??) This became a little tricky when I began to make friends and wanted to stay connected with people along the route who who had better internet access.
Camino friend: “Do you have “WhatsApp”?
Camino Friend: “Well, you can download it from the App store.”
Me: Yeah, but I have no internet access anyway until I get to the next albergue with wifi. . .
So, FINALLY, on the last day of my trip I download the app, and have therefore been able to stay connected with one of the groups of friends I made along the way, vicariously walking on to Finisterre with them and also bonding over post-Camino transitions and issues.
Me: Weird random question: Did anyone else’s feet balloon up big time after you stopped walking? I think mine are finally returning to normal . . .
Camino Friend 1: Yes, (Camino Friend 2) is having that happen now, lol
Camino Friend 3: It happened to me yesterday! A little today.
Camino Friend 2: I’m surprised it happened to me but yes, it helps to prop your feet up. Usually it gets bad when I’ve been sitting for longer than an hour.
Me: Glad to know I’m not completely abnormal! I’ll have to do that more.
Camino Friend 3: I went shoe shopping in Porto yesterday. Was kind of embarrassing!
Camino Friend 4: The same Way happened to me as you, as we. . . in fact.
Camino Friend 5: YES. The 11 hr flight also didn’t help. Everything was swelling and getting super stiff.
I’ve also kept contact with my young French friend through Facebook messenger and also reconnected with a friend that I met my very first night! I joined the Facebook group American Pilgrims on the Camino (APOC) ® before I left for the Camino, to get advice for the trip. I was stunned this week to see a posted picture of an American pilgrim standing alongside my Beilari Scottish dinner mate and rose-tatooed Canadian friend! She wrote this beautiful message:
Camino good byes are so difficult! I’ve spent the past 36 days with Craig and Virginia. We met on June 28, our first day, each of us setting out on our own. I met Craig on the way up the mountain, while trying to catch my breath. Virginia and I met up shortly after, taking a small break. Who knew that that first day would set the tone for my Camino. It’s strange for pilgrims to walk together for so long, but we just clicked. These two made my Camino incredible. We’ve shared a unique experience that’s impossible for others to understand. They’re my family now. They will forever be a part of my life and forever be in my heart. I can’t thank them enough for everything. ❤ The Camino works in amazing ways. They came into my life when I needed it the most.
In the past when I’ve gone on trips, we’ve tended to quickly lose connection as the memories of the trip fade into the background, and our lives come back to the foreground. Here’s to hoping this time will be different — especially since I plan to continue on other “Camino”s!
Sharing this with you has been wonderful. I plan to schedule a post for every day this week, even while I’m away at conference. (Keep an eye out!)
Love, light, and blessings. ❤