Why did I walk the Camino?

One of the questions that I now get asked a lot is; “Why did you decide to walk the camino?” It’s a good question and it deserves a thoughtful answer. For a long time I didn’t have an answer to this question. I first became aware of the camino about 10 years ago. But that is all it was – awareness. Then about five years ago, that is three years before I actually went to Spain, I started to feel a compulsion to walk it. I did not then know why, nor do I now.

What I do know is that the compulsion grew until I realized that I really wanted to do this. So I spent two years getting myself and my gear ready to walk. As I was walking on the camino, I wondered why I was there, and I had some ideas, but no convictions. No blinding insights, as in “Aha, so THAT’s why I’m walking!” Even after I came home, I still did not have a clear answer, but I do have some thoughts about it. I believe that it was a mix of curiosity and bravado. The curiosity part was partly I wondered whether I could actually walk a very long distance at my age, partly curiosity about the psychological impact of walking alone in a strange country for over a month and partly curiosity about whether there would be any spiritual overtones in walking a path that millions of pilgrims had walked for a millennium. The bravado part was thinking that I could walk over 700 kilometres at the age of 70. As it turned out … well, you know how it turned out.

By the way, I won’t be blogging every day … I don’t think … but I will keep up a steady stream of whatever crosses my mind. I find that I really enjoy knowing that people are reading what I write and evidently getting some value out of it. I would be happy to answer any questions that you pose to me.



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