Reality Bites

4 04 2019

Well the blog posts had to take a backseat to an intense 24 hours of tax preparation which was really tedious and is still incomplete.

I actually had a full day off today and all I did was taxes. In some ways it really reminded me of the Camino mindset because last year at this time I basically just split and left my husband to deal with things. Not very nice, not very practical but the Camino was waiting and got priority. But that was last year, which really irked me today.

I’m trying to retrieve that mentality but that’s just not possible off the trail. I wonder if this is why so many people do the Camino over and over. When someone would share that it was their third or even eighth Camino Suzy would say, “You know there’s a group for that…”

It’s also difficult to relate to others who haven’t been on the path. You end up feeling like you’re constantly talking about it and wonder if people are thinking oh jeez here she goes talking about the Camino again. Their eyes glaze over and they shuffle from foot to foot looking for the next exit.

Last night I became overwhelmed by the paperwork and fled to Facebook for a moment and caught some glimpses of my Camino family and it warmed my heart. This little network seems at first so tenuous when you consider how little time we spent with some of them, but the conditions under which we met were so intense that the bonds that formed were incredibly strong. Like fishing line the ties seem almost invisible but the line is secure and we will always be connected.

Jacques for example, I think we really only met him at two albergues but when we reached a town further along where he was working as a hospitalero we came across his Albergue/rest stop. We were greeted as warmly as if we were his family. Kisses and hugs and introductions to his co-workers, just incredible connections formed in short instances.

The other thing I find so interesting is how certain people would enter our zone for a time and then disappear. Some we never connected to again, like the woman I gave a scallop shell to, the guy who was super chatty that we walked with in the rain who told us to find Tomas the mystic. There were people we saw everywhere like the nice young man that had no money and was injured. We will likely never know if he finished. Everyone is on their own pace and schedule and as such sometimes you do t know where they are. I’d love if someone could do a schematic of the various paths we were all on and show me for example how and where we got ahead of the Germans who arrived in Santiago after us. Where did we pass them? Were they in a bar? Did they start late or stay an extra day? It really fascinated me.

I left the paperwork to sneak out to open mic tonight and while I was there reviewed my posts from just about now realizing that one of the great stops was Albergue St. Nicolas. That is where our first core group came together, but interestingly none of them were in Santiago when we were there. One aped way past is so far that we could have never caught him, a couple we met there had already done the last half of the Camino and had just come to do the first part, and of course one had to leave due to foot and then leg issues. Heartbreaking to us.

But then along the way we made new Camino families. More and more connections.At Puente la Reina we met a great big group but only really kept connected with one guy, he hit the Cruz de Ferro before us and we ran into him in Santiago, can’t remember who arrived first. Until recently I didn’t realize he’d known our friend who had to leave as well. So without us knowing a lot of the characters we met also have ties to others we knew. So imagine all of these lines back and forth. Micro filaments that span the globe connecting us all. Think of it! I believe it is like a Gia t dream catcher. Each “wire” has a charge, that comes from the two individuals at either end. So there’s energy coursing across these “wires” but all the wires are crossing and at the intersections where they meet that energy is magnified.

This collective of peregrinos, some considered friends and some maybe just someone who you casually passed with a “Buen Camino” and a nod. Each one of us is a spider on this web we have woven, so when one of us tugs it we all sense the vibration and we can all tap into the current of electricity these connections provide us. I’m so grateful for that.

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