I began the Camino with a lot of doubt. Could I do it? Who did I think was was to even attempt such a hike? How will I keep from getting lost? And so it went.
At daybreak, after about five hours of restless hours of sleep, I looked out the window expecting to see droves of pilgrims heading out for the Camino in the wet dawn. But not a soul. I dressed, then packed my pack several times trying to get it just right. Then I looked out the window agin. Still no pilgrims in sight. I finally forced myself to stop tying and retying my shoes, strapped on my pack and went downstairs. Then I forced myself to open the door, put a foot outside and begin my camino.
After about ten kilometers I settled into a steady rhythm that was periodically interrupted by mud. The incessant rain and the boots of many pilgrims turned the trail into a slippery, gooey mess.
The mountain scenery and villages were postcard perfect, though I have to admit that the babbling brooks honestly were more like raging rivers.
The rain continued for two full days making the second day’s hike even muddier as determined pilgrims slogged up and down the hills with many finding themselves seated in the muck after an unlucky misstep. I was lucky. I managed to genuflect in the mud just once.
The Camino is not a Sunday stroll but it is satisfying and already I have met some interesting and delightful pilgrims. Sleeping in albergues (hostels) is a new experience and one that contributes to the camaraderie of the Camino.