I’ve learned a lot having talked to my podcast guests over the last number of months. First of all, it has been a pleasure to re-walk their Camino with them during this challenging time. Secondly, it gives me an outlet to give back – something that I have been doing for three years and I look forward to continue doing so when some kind of normality returns. It is encouraging to see people from all over the world listening in and I am grateful for that. I am not sure how long I can continue creating podcasts but if pilgrims wish to share their story with me, I will keep going. I had a great chat with Adam, a English pilgrim I met in 2017. We shared many memories and it was fun to talk after so long. Being part of a Camino family really helps your Camino experience in my opinion and we talked about that.
Prior to that, I spoke to Samantha from Thunder Bay, Canada. She walked the Camino Francés last May. She left her home with a question “Who really am I?” and returned with a different outlook on life. Following her Camino, she left her job as a financial consultant and once normality returns, Samantha will guide women on pilgrimages and retreats. She has a website www.shewalksthewalk.com where you can find all her details. The Camino has the ability to change you, only if you let it.
For me, change has been tiny but noticeable. The most obvious change is the call to give back to the Camino, both in written form on my blog and as a volunteer. I have been writing for years and many other pilgrims have been doing the same for far longer. I started to volunteer three years ago in Dublin. Secondly, I like to think that I have a more positive outlook. Yes, this pandemic is far from ideal but it will go away and we will be walking in Spain again. I am sure of it. And finally, and I suppose this relates to personal items, since 2012/2013 my hoarding days are over. Anything, that I do not need I usually give away. I live by how I walked on the Camino. I walk 2-3 weeks most years with bare essentials in a backpack and I am carrying on that idea.
So how has the Camino de Santiago changed you?
There is no doubt that the Camino do change you once you’ve been on The Way … that’s for sure! Both me and my husband quit our jobs, sold one house (we have another much smaller one we are living in now), sold our cars (kept one) and gave most of our stuff away … and never missed a thing! Though, it’s been coming for quite some years, our first Camino in 2017 just confirmed that we were heading in the right direction.
Yes, we definitely don’t need all the stuff accumulated over years … and we have adopted the minimalist lifestyle 100%!
And I must admit: I’ve learned to take better care of my feet … they still need to take me to more beautiful places (and hopefully more Camino’s ☺️).
Thanks so much for your comment! I love hearing stories like these after a Camino. And your posts from your walk from Lisbon bring back so many memories from last September. You are still on your Camino, I see… It is just a matter of time before you return to walk one of the many ways to Santiago.
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Without a doubt every Camino I have walked has changed me in one way or another. The one common thread I have found between all of them is patience. In addition, I have learned I DO NOT need “Things” in my life to survive. I can get by with the bare basics and still enjoy life.
Another truly important thing I have learned is people and friendships. I have met “many” people just walking along a dirty dusty road, who I still remain in touch with 8-10 tears after our first meeting.
I couldn’t encourage people enough to give this a try and to go with an open mind…..
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Thanks so much for your comment! It’s amazing how the Camino has changed people for the better, how little we need afterward and how important friendships are. Looking forward to creating more memories next year. Buen Camino!