....To Santiago

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The blog that went silent

Even with the best of intentions, it turned out to be impossible to blog on this site while I was walking the Camino.  The best I could manage was to post some of my photos on FaceBook, so I will try to fill in the gaps and post photos later.
The walk took 11 days with one rest day on the 7th day (funny how the Sabbath insists on being honored.) we averaged 15-20 kms per day with somewhat challenging elevations and cobblestones through the entire Portugal segment.  Cobblestones are very tiring underfoot, but beautiful to look at as they curved gracefully ahead of us through the lush and elegant landscape.
Aside from the physical challenges of cramps and blisters and walking through pouring for entire days, the emotional challenges dwarfed them during the second week when I received the news that my mother passed away on May 11, just three days before Mothers Day.  My mother always scoffed at Mothers Day, disparaging it as a "Hallmark holiday". But she could not escape the piignancy of our family feeling as we poured our hearts out on social media, seeking solace.
I just kept walking, knowing that this was where I was called to be at this very sad moment.  And I was grateful for the chance to be left alone for long hours of walking and absorbing my surroundings, reflecting on this turn in the road in our family life.  My sister let me virtually "visit" my mother's bedside as she was fading, and we shared our grief.
So I walked into Santiago where I lit a candle for her and for others I was praying for in the Sepulcher of the Cathedral.  And my Camino family, including Stuart, comforted me and kept me company until the time of return from our pilgrimage.  Now we are back and the way forward still awaits.

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