Taking a break in Estella – Walking the Camino de Santiago
I find it hard to believe that the physical has beaten me so early on the Camino. I carry a lot of weight in my pack, more than the 10- 12 kg goal that I had for myself. The terrain has been far more difficult than I ever expected. In the beginning, the beauty of the landscape was enough – I walked on with a light heart and happy soul. Every moment a breathtaking sight inspired me – the landscape along the Camino absolutely stunning!
Somewhere along the way, the blisters, almost an obsession at times amongst some of the pilgrims, including myself, have gotten the better of me! My feet have become an angry mess – blisters the sizes of football fields are pushing their way to the surface. The biggest concern – my big toe which, at times, I can not even bend as it swells to double it’s size. I found myself shuffling to Estella, not even appreciating the view or thinking about anything but my feet. It is time to take a break.
It is amazing how the world can provide when you need it most. I have met so many wonderful people already on the trail, including a Dutch man who walked with me into Estella, making sure I found a place to rest before continuing his journey. Upon my arrival at Hostal Christina, a fellow pilgrim, also suffering for her feet, invited me to share her room – halving the cost for both of us, and allowing our feet the much needed time to heal. I believe we also benefitted from each others company – conversations flowed easily as we shared life on and off the Camino as we each undertook our own journey’s across Spain. It is amazing how you can meet the right people at the right time as you walk this centuries old pilgrimage.
So here it is – while I have set a goal of walking the Camino in 40 days, I have decided to take a temporary stop – 2 nights in Estella to recover my feet, if not fully, at least enough to carry on. It will be a chance for my body to catch up to my mind – so that when I continue, I can appreciate all the Camino has to offer – while a tough decision – taking a break in Estella is the right thing to do. Sometimes we just have to listen to our bodies!