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reflections of my camino

#1
the feet of Camino de Santiago de Compostela



two feet come and join four more
walking side by side for a time
enjoying the group pace

time passes
one slows down
another speeds up

one of the hardest things in life is to blend your footsteps with another
one of the easiest thing we can do is walk to our own internal rhythms

two feet can feel free, but also two feet can feel lonely
on the camino two feet can be in good company and also in a silent meditation,
old feet, young feet, pedicured feet and dust-caked feet,
all walking some of the most beautiful land in the world, while paths unfold with children, cattle, women, roosters, men, dogs, cats and the spirit of the shared experience

two feet meet two more feet meet two more feet meet two more feet
laughter, beer and tapas are shared

in the evening many feet need tending; each village has storefronts selling ointments and soothing lotions for the feet, blisters form and blisters heal, and new relationships grow.
as we discover the truths about our relationships and our expectations of others,
we also realize a similar bond with our hiking boots - are they a good fit, do they serve me well for the long term, or do they just look good to others and are causing me pain?

dawn breaks late and my feet hurt while sipping my first coffee of the day. I languish in this moment before I need to lace up and begin today’s journey. as in our lives we often realize that it is what is inside that counts, we start to pay a greater attention to our socks. our feet definitely appreciate a well chosen pair for this specific journey. it no longer matters if they are color coordinated, nor if they are striped. later, it becomes less important if they are clean, and finally all that matters is if they are dry.

after a kilometer or two, the morning pain leaves and it starts to feel natural. we become more attuned to our surroundings as the days pass. a lane has abundant peppermint we stuff in our pockets, later to refresh our boots overnight as we rest our bodies. our steps have increased our awareness of the phases of the moon and the bountiful harvest along the way.

some feet enter the camino with expectation, others with fear
some feet realize each day becomes easier as they fall into their own instinctive tempo
other feet cannot escape their competitive side, going so fast they miss the “pyramids”
many feet stop and relax at roadside café’s for coffee, beer and the region’s best riojas
these feet are often crossed in front of extended legs, in a relaxed and confident manner
almost saying, why yes, I am walking the camino, thank you very much.

along the journey, our feet pass through peoples lives, a parade of grace seeking pilgrims receiving the gift of encouragement in the form of “buen camino” .

when the time comes for my walking to be done, my feet and spirit are itching to walk more, to continue in this manner, walking one step at a time, towards Santiago.
 

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