Friday, December 26, 2008

Camino de Santiago

Nowadays most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one’s mistakes – Oscar Wilde.

I am leaving Australia to walk about 750km through Spain.

I have booked and paid for my flights, I have resigned from my rather stable and relaxed job (despite the economic downturn) and I have sold my car. I have a 35L pack (it’s little and I like it that way), a pair of hiking boots that cost me almost as much as my car was worth, and with a month to go I am so scared that I have a non-stop sick feeling in my stomach.

In February 2009 I will be walking the Camino de Santiago. I’m not entirely sure why or how this came about. I don’t even like walking. I don’t like strange places. I don’t speak Spanish and I don’t have any relatives or friends in Spain that can come help me if all goes horribly wrong.

I guess that the main reason I’m going is because this is the first time in my life that nothing is holding me back. Previously, I hadn’t seriously entertained the idea of going away because my grandpa was ill and very old. He passed away, but I wasn’t about to leave because my ex-boyfriend didn’t want to travel until he’d finished uni. We broke up and suddenly I had nothing holding me here. So I started making plans.

I need to shake myself out of this rut I'm in. 2008 has been a rough year for me and I'm ready to leave it all behind. I guess for me the Camino is about starting over.

I fly to Thailand via Sydney at the end of January. After spending a few days there (I want to see elephants), I am going to fly to London. OH how glorious that will be! I’m going to spend my 25th birthday at the British Museum. For me this is the ultimate present. Then, I somehow make my way to France, where this absurd journey really starts.

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