My (Possible) Return to the Camino

As most of you know, I completed over 110km of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in June. I loved every second of it and walking for charity made it feel that bit better. But ever since I returned home, I’ve had a nagging urge to go back and walk some more. It took more than a while to settle back to routine when I returned.

So I have started plans to return back to walk another stage. Initially I wanted to walk 8 days from Ponferrada (http://bit.ly/ndy6WV) to Sarria. It seemed doable and after hurting my leg back in June, I was thinking I wouldn’t need to walk more than 20km a day. The plan was to fly into Santiago, get a bus to Ponferrada and walk to Sarria. On return, I bus it from Sarria back to Santiago, maybe stay the night and then return. Handy enough.
Next step was to get in touch with Garry, the guide from June. He lives in Santiago and has walked the Camino three times. He has written up a plan of action for me and I have to say it’s a massive help. In the end, I decided to round the duration to 10 days and start from Leon.
The biggest problem I have (and any help would be appreciated) is how I get to Leon. I have so many choices for flights; Dublin to Santiago or to Bilbao. Ryanair don’t fly to Northern Spain from Ireland so a flight to Santiago from Dublin seems the right option. It costs a small fortune so I may be forced to travel to Stansted and fly out to Santander or Santiago by Ryanair. Phew!
I have alot of decisions to make. The past few days I have been thinking of holding back for a few months but it’s now or never I reckon.

One month on..

It’s over a month since my last post and it’s well and truly time to update this thing, or at least say a few words to console it.  So what have I been doing with myself since…??

Well I am a month back from my Camino trek in June (pictures here and here. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and am looking to return to walk some part of the Way in the next year. I met some great people, and we continue to keep in touch. Let’s not forget all monies raised were donated to Aware. It is something I would encourage you all to do, even mark it down on your bucket list when you hit that territory! I had written up a long piece to be published but didn’t get round to finishing it, so I dropped it. I may come back to it soon.

I am back to the office after a two day break (Thursday and Friday) and enjoyed the rest. Didn’t do anything exciting, but it’s always good to wake up and not have something to do for the day. Not many holidays left, so will be conserving them until October or November. Not planning on a return to Spain until March or April. The real difficulty I have at the moment in relation to the Camino is I am finding it hard to find people to come along with me at that time. The folks I went with have expressed no interest to return and I am not too keen to venture off on my own. So maybe you Mr or Ms Reader, could help me somehow? 🙂

It was tough to get back to the swing of things after I got back. It took me a week or so to settle down, I just found it hard to focus as my mind was on the previous 10 days.

I started up this blog to post pictures, either from my iPhone or camera. I haven’t been doing that alot recently, but will do.

10 days

Well I received my itinerary this morning for my trip. I will be boarding a flight to Santiago on Saturday 4th and arriving there just before 1pm. I’m sure there will be others on board who will be taking part in the walk, and they will go about it at their own pace and speed. We awake at 7.30am each morning which is fine by me, but I’m sure the late nights we will have will change my opinion sharpish. It’s amazing the amount of good wishes and positive feedback I am getting for doing this from work, Facebook and on Twitter. Even two years ago I would never have thought of doing it and if it was not for my father working for Aware, I would never have heard of the Camino. I hope to take a good few pictures and eventually upload them. This will probably be the last post I make before then so over and out until I arrive back.

Walking..and Drinking..

I’ve got little over three weeks now before I head off to sunnier climes to Spain. We head off on the 4th to Madrid and after a long drive to Sarria we camp for the night before starting the trek. As far as I am aware, there are 9 taking part, three of which I spoken to already. So I have great reason to be looking forward to this and the challenge. So far, I have raised just over €500 so I have a bit to go before I hit my target.
I am working away with some fundraising however. A GAA Fantasy football league, which I mentioned in my previous post, has been arranged and that is due to start on the 22nd of this month. Also I have a table quiz organised for the 13th of May and I am hoping a load of people turn up as it will be good fun. And after all it is Friday!
Have been slacking on the practice to be honest. Up to mid-April I was walking roughly 5 hours a week,  including 10km walks during the weekend. The last few weeks I haven’t done much, mostly due to a lack of motivation and when you have bad days at work, exercise is the last thing you want to do. Just need to get back in gear again and I will be ok.
Other news. I went along to my 2nd meet up of Twitter users last night. Some people I have met previously, and some I met for the first time. Aptly called DubTweaster, a good crowd met in Solas on Wexford Street for some pre-party drinks before going next door to the Village. I had a great night! I have met some good friends from Twitter in the last 6 months and it has kind of kicked my social life back into shape again. Much drink was consumed and many creme eggs were eaten 🙂 Here’s to the next meet up!
Now I am off to have some food before going for a walk in the evening.

Table Quiz / GAA League

Just thought I’d give an update on how things are going now that I have 6 weeks to go to the event. I am on few days annual leave so it is best to get this out now as I never will otherwise. I have a few things in the pipeline with regards to fundraising for the Camino walk. Firstly, I have a table quiz organised for the 13th of May in Dublin. I’ve invited work colleagues, Twitter followers, Facebook friends and pretty much everyone I know to come along. It promises to be a great night. It will be the first Table Quiz (or any event) I have organised so it is all new to me. So if you have time on Friday, the 13th May, drop in! Also, I have (along with the brother) set up a GAA Fantasy Football league to commence on May 22nd right through to the end of September. Basically you can pick 7 teams and along the way, you pick up points for every win, goal and points scored, provincial title won and so on. The winner will end up with €200. You don’t need to be a GAA whiz at all to enter. I am in the process of arranging an online payment system, but when I have that arranged we are all ready to go. I really hope to get a good uptake and if popular I can make this into an annual fundraiser. Again, all additional funds go to Aware. Aware have been a charity of choice for the last few years. If you want to find out more about either the GAA Fantasy League or Table Quiz or if you would like to donate for the trek, feel free to message me on Twitter @clearskies or email me at caminogaaleague@gmail.com. Thanks. David.

A bit of a challenge…

On the 4th of June 2011, I will be walking the final part of the Camino de Santiago in Northern Spain in aid of Aware. In total, I will be walking 112km over 6 days and will no doubt be an unforgetable experience.

Here is a breakdown of the trek.
Day One: Fly from Dublin to Madrid after which we travel to Sarria from Madrid.
Day Two: Sarria to Portomarin – 22km
Day Three: Portomarin to Eirexe – 17km
Day Four: Eirexe to Melide – 22km
Day Five: Melide to Arzua – 15km
Day Six: Arzua to Amenal – 24km
Day Seven: Ameral to Santiago de Compostela – 27km

Click here to see a map of the trek: http://static.hfholidays.co.uk/hfholidays/assets/images/2009/11/Camino_de_San…

The important thing to remember here is I am doing this trek for a great cause and that every euro you sponsor will be greatly appreciated.

As I type I am organising online fundraising page, I will post the link when it is arranged.

For more information about Aware and they good things the people there do, just go to www.aware.ie