Thursday, May 31, 2007

how it works

Some people have asked me questions about just how this thing works. I{ll try to explain.

On any given day, I wake up whenever the other pilgrims start scuffling about, anywhere from 5.30 to 7. I pack my bags up, spend 10 minutes caring for my feet, put on my pack, and start falling the yellow arrows. I walk for awhile, maybe 30 minutes, maybe 2 hours until I find a town that has a bar or a store or a bakery open. There, I have some sort of drink and (if all goes well) a chocolate croissant. Depending on whether I want to talk to people or write, I might spend a bit of time there. Then, I go on walking. Sometimes I walk with people. Sometimes I don{t. Sometimes the Camino goes through quite a few towns. Sometimes it doesn{t. I usually have a vague idea of where I will end up and how many km I will walk that day. I bring some food along, but I don{t usually stop to eat it until I arrive to my final destination. I have a piece of paper that tells me where the albergues are and tells me the distances between them. It{s a good idea to arrive earlyish at the albergues because they tend to fill up. I spend my afternoons writing and chatting with the other pilgrims or scaring up some kind of trouble. Usually there is at least one restaurant in the tiny towns, and I try to buy food for the next day. Again, bathing and laundry are optional. (I recently told another pilgrim that my pants were dirty. He asked if I could identify the source of the stains. When I said that I could, he told me that I didn{t need to wash them yet.)

I walk about 20-30K per day. The past two days have been 20, and they seem too short. Unfortunately, the other option has been to go another 10, which can be a bit exhausting. (I do have a goal of doing a marathon 26 mile day, that that 40 K is quite stupid and I will only do it if there is a hotel and a rest day at the end. That may happen next week as I make my way into Leon, depending on the status of the left side of my body.)

What have I left out? Tell me.

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