We have been reading up about the Camino, looking through our tramping gear, and thinking about what we can make do with and what we will need to buy. It will be a different sort of walking than we re used to: mainly hard surfaces, and with small towns every few miles along the route. There are pilgrims' hostels and restaurants and shops. There will be no need for a tent, a stove or much food. It will be May, and, although the guide books tell us there is still the possibility of snow at the start of the Camino, we will be more likely to encounter some rain, and as the month draws on, quite warm weather. So, it will be small packs, light weight boots, 1 season sleeping bags. One thing all commentators agree on, is the fact that the local people speak no English. Or French or German for that matter. So, today I started to see how much rudimentary Spanish I could cram into my head between now and April. Given today's effort with Spanish In 30 Days, my guess is: not much. I'll have to rely on sign language and hope that a few of them speak Classical Hebrew, Maori or New Testament Greek.
Preparation is part of it all. Scrabbling through the racks at Kathmandu's sale or struggling with Soy Kelvin. Soy clerigo y estudio espanol. Que interestante! builds a sense of anticipation. Forking out the readies for a pair of quick drying shorts and a lightweight polar fleece tells us we really are serious about this. Pilgrimage actually begins here and now. Which realisation is possibly the whole point of the exercise.