CAMINO MEMORIES & NEW BEGINNINGS!
Thank you Tara & Nick for sharing some of your camino reflections from 2011 as your journey has continued your memories and experiences of your adventure will inspire others! Yes, just like my first blog post sharing your adventures was called The SMILES Say It All – that’s for sure!!!!!
Memories from 2011 – Our lives at the moment….
Hello everyone! We hope everyone is doing well?
It has been a long time since our last email and a lot has happened in that time so we try and fill you all in on what has been going on in lives of Tara and Mick.
As you all know we left London in August and went to Paris on an all night bus ride which was pretty painful The driver (French) must’ve been new, he stalled it as we left, got lost a few times. We made it and only a few hours late.
Paris- It was a pretty nice city but still a city and could tell we were keen to get down the coast to some quietness. I thought Paris was a nicer city than London though it seemed a lot cleaner. We got to do the tourist thing but just a bit rushed. We went to the Louvre, Notre Dame, the big roundabout and had Cheese baguette and champagne in front of the Eiffel Tower. The afternoon we went up to monte ? which was beautiful and such good views of the city we found a restaurant and had a few French delicacies like snails and crème Brule.
Leaving Paris we caught a train down to Bayonne right down the south of France it was so nice going through the country side and being back near the coastline. We went out to Biarritz the next day to see the ocean before we headed across Spain for a month. It was so good hearing breaking waves and put our feet in the sand. The next day back on the train again and on our way to Saint Jean Pied de Port an absolutely beautiful tiny little town just on the French side of the Pyrenees which is main start point for the Camino in France.
We stayed in a really cool private Albergue (pilgrim hostel) for 2 nights so we could rest and prepare ourselves for our journey. The place we found out was 700 years old. We both loved St Jean must’ve been the nicest town the whole way along the Camino it was in a beautiful spot with a steam running through it with big Trout just under the bridge, old houses, narrow roads running up the hills and castle city on top on it.
The Camino de Santiago- We were so excited to get started and knowing that that the first day is the biggest and hardest UP HILL ALL DAY! But it was also the most beautiful. We were extremely lucky this route can be very dangerous in the rain and fog and also in winter with the snow and is easy to become lost quite a few have died crossing the Pyrenees. The day before and after we left were rainy and foggy but we had a perfect day with blue skies and a slight breeze.
I have no idea how/what to write about ‘The Camino’ only that it was the most amazing adventure each of us have ever been on. We have too many stories to even start, we’ll have to save them for when we get home. We don’t have a bad thing to say about it, both of us did very well I suffered from blisters and Mick’s knee played up through the Meseta, he had the start of tendonitis we did a few shorter days and then it settled down. We met so many amazing and inspiring people along the way. Stayed in some amazing places… one was a bell tower which we slept with a mattress on the floor. There were too many bunk beds to even start remembering them all. I had my birthday on the second day, Mick gave a speech at dinner… I was not expecting that from Mick (he is normally very shy)! We then met this lady 2 weeks later and after talking to her for an hour she asked if we were the Aussie couple which the husband gave this amazing speech that had people in tears at how beautiful it was… ha ha. So much to tell I will write another email just about the Camino for those who what to know more because I could go on for ages…
Arriving at Santiago was overwhelming I sat in front of the cathedral and cried still unbelievable that I had actually walked all this way. We had an amazing night there, attended the pilgrim mass the next day at noon which was all in Spanish so had no idea what was going on but it was still so beautiful. A night in a fancy hotel yay! Then kept on walking another 3 days to Finisterre, it was amazing out there. The last 3 km were along the beach it was so nice to finish walking along the beach barefoot. There is one Albergue which is only for people who walk out there (alot of people bus it out there). The old tradition was to walk to the lighthouse (another 3 km uphill) at dusk and burn your shoes or a piece of clothing watch the sunset and you will awake the next morning a new. We didn’t burn any clothing we just sat and watched the sunset and drank wine…
*Leaving the Camino we were still lost as to what to do next, all this time to think you would of thought we would of come up with something… nope. So we booked flights back to London the last place I wanted to go back to but we had a bag of our belongings at a friend’s house we had to get.
We were there for one day, I think Mick noticed it more than what I did, but I was adamant I was staying no longer than a week. So we spent alot of time on the internet and sending applications, we then got two phone calls in one day with our job offers.
So we are working on a FARM for the next 6 weeks (a long story there) it is amazing out here, we look after 2 beautiful children and 2 chickens, there were pigs but they are now in the freezer! We live near the main house in an old caravan which is bigger than our flat in London, there is also an apartment next to us so anyone who wants to come visit COME NOW we have everything here for you, and we have our own car which has been quite a novelty for us. The nearest town is a 15min drive on the hwy and it is still only the size of Maclean if that! We are both so unbelievable happy out here. The family we work for are beautiful people. So we live 3 hours North West of London on the Wales boarder. A little colder than but not as cold as where were going….
Next part of the journey, on the same day we got offered another job working as a ski chalet host and driver/everything. In FRANCE yay! So we have been crazy busy applying for our French working visa. The season opens in December and goes until April so we have work and accommodation until then. It sounds amazing only it gets down to -25deg, still have to remind myself it will be amazing. We really are both excited for this.
But for now we have our wellies on and food festival to attend… yum local produce! I forgot to say we have our milk delivered to our house in the old glass jars ha ha love this!
I would LOVE to hear what has been happening back home, please give us an update its been so long..
Love to you all love Mick and Tara
* Thank you Tara and Mick for sharing some of your camino experiences and I look forward to posting more about your journey and what changes the camino has contributed to in your lives. Bo Camiño!