Step by Step
There is a road that leads to Santiago de Compostela whose history and magic I stumbled upon as a youthful backpacker, the memory of which stayed with me for many years before finally tackling a small part of it. Compared to many people that I met on the way (literally translated, on The Way!) who had been walking for a month or two and who had begun their journey in St Jean de Pied au Port or in Le Puy in France, I was a latecomer. Checking in for the last 160kms of El Camino only...
What I learnt however is a lesson for life. Everyone's "camino", everyone's "way" was respected and honoured. It is your journey and it is enough. Notwithstanding my lesser miles, those first few days of pain and soreness, blisters and bumps were the same as those shared by all, in their first few days or weeks.
Empathy was given freely by strangers. I was encouraged to cry when I felt I couldn't take another step and was reassured by my companion of all of a few hours that we would walk together if I did. It moved me beyond words. A stranger, prepared to set a pace at mine to give the kind of solace that was deemed needed.
One feels small walking El Camino, it is vast and long and beautiful. It is an enemy and a comfort. It makes you speak to God when you feel worn to the bone and makes you rejoice with such purity for the wonders ahead and for the miles that slip slowly by.
I was told the secret by a villager - "no hay mas que andar" he said.
No hay mas que andar - meaning - you just walk / there is nothing more to it than walking.
And that is the key...step by step. There is nothing else to it.
It becomes a metaphor for your life's journey.
Your Camino will have a life all its own whether you plan it to or not.
Step by step....that is the key.
© 2011 J E MATHISON
The Blagsmith from Britain on September 23, 2011:
Irrespective of the fact that you only have one hub. I am a follower, your personal experience regardless how small - is a triumph.