Here I go again!
Yes, I know some will call me crazy because why would I subject myself to so much walking; crazy because I have fallen head over heels in love with the Camino de Santiago; crazy for traveling to Spain to walk when there are many places to walk right here in the United States. Those same people cannot understand the need I have to walk a Camino, no less numerous Caminos.
Yes, there are some people who applaud me; actually there are many who cheer me on. My sons and their families are my biggest supporters and cheering section. My oldest son, the cyclist, is happy to see me involved in and excited about a physical activity. And my youngest son along with his family would love to walk a Camino with me some day in the future.
So many of my personal friends wish they could walk the Camino, but they became frightened when they learned the distance of each Camino. I have yet been able to convince any of them the most poignant lesson I have learned “every journey begins with a single step” (from the teachings of the Chinese Philosopher, Lao-tzu).
Yes, 500 miles for the Camino Francés sounds like an enormous distance to walk. I would agree that the 1,000 miles for the Le Pay route leading into the Camino Francés ending in Santiago de Compostela could be daunting.
But there are many different Camino routes; the Camino Portugués beginning in Porto (which I just completed) is only approximately 150 miles and the Camino Inglés is estimated at 77 miles long. There are routes both long and short, but it is only necessary to walk 100 kilometers or 62 miles of any route to receive a Compostela (the certificate of completion).
Because the Camino Inglés is only 77 miles, once I arrive in Santiago I will be continuing to walk the Caminos Finisterre and Muxia and then back to Santiago. These three Caminos should total approximately 202 miles. I am expecting these Caminos to take me a month to complete.
It is true, I have become obsessed by the many routes of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela and hope to be able to continue walking each one. Yes, I know, I am the perfect example of the Camino phenomena called the “Camino Virus”. I have a classic case of, as I like to say, “Once Bitten”!!