Sunday, August 23, 2015

Things I Have Learned While Walking

1. Protect your feet: they are literally what carries you, and even though it is obvious, it is hard to do. Arches will flatten, blisters might happen, and there will be unspoken pains occurring sporadically and randomly. Listen to your soles, you can't go anywhere without them.
2. The menu de Pelegrinos is rarely worth it: though tempting, the four course meal with wine OR water is rarely satisfying. Spain has impressed me with its neverending creativity involving tuna, and for the weary pelegrino, grease seems to be used as if it has nutritional value.
3. Trust arrows not people: if you have gone more than 2 km without a yellow arrow, turn around. The arrows are there to help you, and if you haven't seen one, you are probably lost and about to end up on an epically frustrating adventure to another somewhere than where you want.
4. Bread is good: I finally understand in full John Muir's praise for bread. The last couple kilometers usually require an extra pick me up; bread is your friend.
5. Bring rain gear: trash bags don't cut it for the days of torrential downpour.
6. The Camino provides: listen to your instinct. if you allow it, your journey will take you where you need to go. Even with devices to plan plan plan, and think about intangible aways, I firmly suggest taking things as they come. You may have to walk further, but at least you know the gods willed you to end up wherever you do.
7. Never sleep on the bunk beds pushed together next to a stranger of the opposite sex. Just don't.
8. If you party, be prepared to walk off the hangover. Literally. Its not always worth it, but you can.
9. Speaking Italian could finally come in handy on the Camino
10. You are strong. Really strong. Stronger than you think you are. There is a point where you should stop and listen to your body. There are a lot of those times actually, but you can and will probably do more than you ever thought possible. Soon, walking 25 km a day is just something you do, and end up craving. After all is said and done, you'll find peace in motion.

Walking is good. Get outside.
**there are more lessons, I'm just not witty enough to think of them right now.

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