I was opening a can of tuna fish tonight and it slipped off the edge of the counter and fell down towards my bare feet. In my mind I was shouting, “No!!! Don’t hit my toes!!!!” I tried to jump out of the way, my big toe got nicked, but- you can rest assured- it was in no way a Camino-ending injury.
My feet, these days, are precious. My health is precious. The money in my wallet is precious. My time is precious.
It’s all so precious because my Camino is close. 27 days until I leave and I’m holding my breath that it all comes together and that I will somehow find myself on a trail, walking.
It still feels a little bit impossible. As more people are asking me about my summer plans and I explain this long walk, I find that I have some disbelief that I’ll actually do this. It still feels so far away, like there’s so much that needs to happen before I can believe that I can do this.
Isn’t there a point when I’m supposed to feel like a hiker? Isn’t there a point when I’m supposed to have a surge of confidence? Isn’t there a point when I’m supposed to feel certain about my pack and my shoes and my gear?
Some parts of this are slowly coming together, but other parts are a comedy of errors.
For instance, I bought a white fleece. A white fleece! To wear on a 500-mile summer walk through Spain! My best friend has been staying with me for a few weeks, and she’s been great at giving advice and opinions when I ask for them. So I even talked over the whole white fleece thing with her, and she looked at me and said, “White gets dirty.” And I agreed but what did I do? I bought a white fleece.
I get so overwhelmed with shopping and choosing the ‘right’ things that at a certain point, I usually give up and buy whatever strikes my fancy. In this case, I fixated on having something white to wear, because I love wearing white in the summer. It’s impractical and ridiculous but it still seemed like an okay idea. And then, today, the fleece arrived in the mail and I opened it and man, is it white. A pure, soft, beautiful white that is going to be so dirty and stained covered by the end of my walk… what was I thinking?
I’ve spent so much time reading and researching gear and clothing and sleeping bags and micro-fiber towels and sock liners and buffs and water bottles and rain jackets and my head is spinning. There always seems to be more to read, more to learn, more opinions to hear, more advice to receive. And usually, by the end of all of this reading and researching, I feel further behind than where I started. Confused. Clueless.
I’ve written about this already, but as ever, it’s a practice in letting go. It’s okay to have anxiety about this trip and whether I’m preparing enough, but I also need to let go of all the small worries. Is my fleece going to get dirty? Yes. Is my fleece lightweight and going to give me a layer of warmth when I need it? Yes. And both of these answers are okay.
What’s not okay is dropping a can of tuna fish on my foot and breaking a toe and being forced to delay my Camino. This, luckily, didn’t happen, but you’d better believe I’m going to be extra careful with my feet in these next few weeks.