|Brand new blooms in my garden today - just waiting to burst open|
All journeys start with a beginning. It normally has an end. Normally, not always.
You can choose to carry on travelling for as long as you wish. You can plan your route, or you can just get on the road and go where life leads you.
I've decided to do just do both. My heart is set on a journey that has started in my head a few weeks ago. I have decided to plan a route but along the way I am going to allow life to lead me along as many detours as possible. I don't want to know when or where it's going to end - that doesn't seem important.
My official route is going to start somewhere in Spain (I think) in July 2012. The road I plan to travel has been travelled by hundreds before me, so it's not a new or original route. For me however, it's going to be a first, filled with promise, hope and excitement.
I am planning to walk the Camino de Santiago. And I'm doing it because I will celebrate my 50th birthday in July 2012.
There. I've said it.
No big parties, just a big walk. Big in more ways than one. It is going to take me about a month and stretches over about 780km. Big also because I am hoping to have some of the people in my life join me for sections of the route. I can't think of a bigger gift to myself than this adventure, what a way to celebrate life!
Until about three weeks ago I had never heard of the Camino de Santiago. I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro two months ago but I knew nothing about this pilgrimage that has attracted so many for so long.
My sister mentioned over a cup of coffee that a friend had just walked the entire route and I was hooked on the idea. So at this stage all I have is the following - an intense desire to walk the route, basic information that I have googled, printed notes that a friend has passed on to me and a few hmmm's from a few people who are considering meeting up with me along the way.
The new blossoms in my garden symbolise the start of something new. I'm going to keep close tabs on them as they open up and celebrate life with colour and fragrance. This is how I feel about the journey that I have embarked on. By starting this blog today I feel that I can't turn back. Something new has taken seed in me.
The journey doesn't have to start when I get on the plane in July 2012. It starts today. Walking in the steps of pilgrims that have honoured and acknowledged the importance of God in their lives for hundreds of years before me, is going to be a privilege that I am going to remember for the rest of my life.
Until then I am going to embrace my everyday journey. I have less than two years left of my forties. I intend to celebrate it as best I can. I'm going to surround myself with good people. I am going to push myself as an athlete so that I can actually feel what it feels like to run a full marathon. Who knows, I might even put my dancing shoes on again - they're in a box somewhere - they might even still fit!
And once the Camino is behind me - well, that is going to simply be the beginning of the rest of the journey. The route from there on is going to be as special as I choose to make it. One thing I know for sure, I am going to be wiser and more focused than I've ever been!
If you wish you can join me for the next couple of months - I'm not sure who or what to expect around all the corners that lie ahead, but I am excited and can't wait to see what life has in store for me. A couple of months ago I had no idea whatsoever that I would ever climb the highest mountain in Africa. Now I have and I know my life has been changed forever.
Can't wait to see those blossoms pop open!