To be on route, to walk the walk, buen camino are all common phrases in Norther Spain as pilgrims move from Southwestern France towards Santiago de Compostel, Spain. It is a beautiful landscape full of rolling hills, sweet towns with field stone churches, vivid greens and blues and rustic pillars of brown. The walk is difficult and yet exhilarating. The comradery is comparable to a class reunion, meeting familar faces for an overnight or short trek again and again, wishing each other good walk at each encounter and learning while safeguarding the reasons for walking. A pilgrimage on the full camino can average the length of a season. It is a commitment that requires patience, endurance and faith.
My admiration for those on this trek is enormous. I truly love witnessing someone elses fullness of spirituality, whatever route or guide they may choose. Some of my favorite moments in life have been in the company of people celebrating a service, mass, or religious festival other than my own, or even what I know nothing of. The excitment and effervescence in song, common spoken word or dance is unifying, contagious and inclusive. For those on the camino, theirs may not seem like a celebration but there are still those moments of conragious joy that pull one in. Currently I feel that even though I am not walking anywhere I am on a spiritual journey as well. I wonder too if others I meet can feel the richness of it in my presence. I truly hope so.