End of stage 1…

Some would call each day a stage like a bike race, except it’s not a race, competition or marathon, it’s a journey into self-healing, a voyage I chose to undertake, not exactly sure where it would lead me; but I am finding out! πŸ˜‰

That single rest day wasn’t enough to clear my leg up, so I’m taking two more days here in Le Puy-en-Velay to get some strength back and recuperate. I’ve adjusted my pace to a much slower and precise method, first because I had to when my leg was hurting, but now I consciously do it and it is more enjoyable! πŸ˜„

So stage 1 is complete, having covered just under 450 kms in 3 weeks. Next will come stage 2, from Le Puy to St-Jean-Pied-de-Port, a distance on the Camino of around 730 kms. I’m not suggesting any timeframe here cause I don’t know! That will be followed by stage 3, the final 800 kms to Santiago de Compostela. 

I think I once said that hiking/trekking for me was like meditation, well walking the Camino can be too, I walk and I meditate, it’s incredibly liberating! 😊

  

 

   

Rest day…

It was inevitable I suppose, that after nearly 400 kms I would begin to tire, and so it has proved! Yesterday when I awoke I felt extremely weak and with a sore throat, lacking energy and a little motivation; I guess it may have been beneficial to rest last week instead of pushing on as I have! 3 days in the week were over 30 kms and that is the last time I attempt such elongated stages! 😊

I’m taking my rest day in Montfaucon-en-Velay staying in a small family run hotel! It’s just what I need after 2 and a half weeks of walking! Yesterday on the Chemin I met up with many others whom I’ve seen before, but in the end I had to say I couldn’t continue. They stayed in a gite and continued on this morning…some will be stopping in Le Puy-en-Velay, others carrying on just like me, to Santiago!

I had a really good sleep last night and I’ll be stronger after today , just lounging around, studying my guidebooks and practicing Spanish! πŸ˜„

  
  

  

Past 300 kms mark…

Saturday I arrived in St-Prim overlooking the Rhone river valley! Over 30 kms covered and the last time I’ll do such a slog! In fact I’ve done it 3 times this week and that’s too much! 😁 so I’ve decided to limit my stages to roughly 25 or so kms or under from now on! 😊

I’m motivated for my own personal journey and whenever I pass farmland and see cows or sheep or goats in the field, I’m motivated for the animals too! Please help me to help The Farm Animal Sactuary! Thank you! 😊

πŸ‚πŸ–πŸ“πŸ‡πŸπŸƒ

  
  
  

Exita Helvetica

So the day has finally come, I’m leaving tomorrow morning from the Notre Dame Cathedral in Lausanne to start my journey on foot to Santiago de Compostela! I’m filled with a sense of excitement and anticipation, looking forward to what the road will bring me! For the record, I look like this now, lol πŸ˜„: not sure how it’ll be in 4 months time…

 
When I left school in England at age 13 to emigrate to the US with my family, one of my teachers gave me a book as a going away present! That book was an English copy of the Hindu scripture “Bhagavad Gita”. It has been interpreted as an allegory for the ethical and moral struggles of the human life. The Bhagavad Gita’s emphasis on selfless service was a prime source of inspiration for Gandhi. And according to the Indian historian and writer Khushwant Singh, Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem “Ifβ€”” is “the essence of the message of The Gita in English.”

At the time all this meant nothing to me, I believe I only read the inscription this teacher had written on the inside cover (sadly I can’t remember his name but I think he was my Scripture professor); if memory serves me, that inscription was a mention of the Gaelic blessing ‘May the road rise up to meet you’.

The point is it’s taken me 40 years (a mere minuscule pin-prick in eternity) to understand what he did, to give me a message of peace. I had a difficult time in school and he wanted me to know life doesn’t have to be a drag! He wasn’t trying to convert me to Hinduism but simply passing on information that he thought would do me good!

That book sat on the shelf and gathered dust for almost as long, until it was cleared from storage about 7 years ago along with all my other books. Now someone else has it!

So now ‘may the road rise up to meet me and the wind be always at my back, may the sunshine be warm upon my face…until we meet again’.

Buen Camino! 🚢😊