IN CONTINUATION FROM: TALES FROM THE WALK BEHIND ME, NO.3 – I’M RICH BECAUSE WALKING IS MY PURPOSE
This is a little bit more manageable, it feels good to complete each journal to hit publish.
I do hope that these are interesting reads for whoever sets eyes on them. For myself, I am vividly placed into the moments of my memories to re-live the experience for another day.
How beautiful thought is, more-so, how beautiful is writing to be able to trigger imagination and emotion within the brain.
Miraculous, life is marvelous!
Let’s move on!
The following is Number 4 of 14 in the series of blog posts called “Tales From The Walk Behind Me”.
If you missed part one, here it is — Click Me!
If you’re new to these, it is a series of originally journaled entries through a few of my days —events, experiences, thoughts— along the Camino De Santiago.
This was my second Camino that took place over 26 days through September to October, 2019 that covered 1010+km along the Camino Norte route, including Muxia-Finisterre.
This is my standard cut and paste disclaimer from the tale before, I will give you the bit of warning because it might not be what you expect– my thoughts can be ugly because I’m a weirdo.
Furthermore, the content will vary, and the timelines will be all over the place because my mind loves a wild goose chase.
You also may question my own benevolence as a human being.
This one is spicy! Here is no. 4…
EN ROUTE CAMINO NORTE – Villaviciosa, asturias. SPAIN.
sunday September 15, 2019.
My dad turned 60 today — Happy Birthday to my brosef!
I sit here on the balcony of my hotel room this Sunday evening, a vibrant feeling and glow to the city in the night that is Villaviciosa, Spain.
There is a festival that is taking place right on the street level with music blaring into the sweet Spanish air of the night. Knowing how Spaniards throw parties, it is something that will be going on until the waking hours of the early morning. It is most likely that I will be starting tomorrow’s walk alongside street sweepers and city workers hosing down the roads to wash away the boisterousness of the night.
On another note, I find my life and my mind to be particularly interesting because I can appreciate the sight below me, while reflecting on the day today as rather hard. Truthfully, the miles in the walk were easy, it were my emotions that were hard.
Yesterday I did a solid 50km with no water, without food, and without rest. I didn’t stop walking, while on a 24+ hour fast from food from the previous night. I don’t want to elaborate more on it, but today I felt tired as shit, and after a day like yesterday it was hard to think of mustering up the energy to move my body 30km to my final stop in the bustling city of Villaviciosa.
Okay, okay, maybe I’ll divulge in on it a little bit.
Yesterday morning I woke up in Pendueles after spending the night waiting to see if a Czech girl that I had walked with the day prior was on her way nearer to me, she wasn’t so I made haste.
It was three days prior that we had spent the time bonding along our 37km walk to San Vicente de la Barquera which led to poor logistical planning, because it meant walking less miles than I had intended to. Alternatively, it meant that the Czech girl had walked more miles than she wanted to– an ironic, and unintentional compromise at best.
However, it was rather good timing that allowed for an opportunity of grace as we were able to find shelter in the common room of an old Spanish lady’s home in San Vicente de la Barquera who was housing pilgrims privately.
Originally, I tried to push past her by forcing the distance between us, however, she kept popping up in my path so I decided that it was perhaps an opportunity worthwile to explore a little further– so I slowed down.
She was blonde, kind, and sweet with delicate blue eyes. Her brief story was to embark on the Camino, but along the way somewhere she beach bummed to spend her time in place at a surf camp for about two weeks. It seemed that she wasn’t too keen on walking long distances, she was caught up in the difficulty in the miles — Her words mostly.
She was impressed with herself and how resilient she still felt after our 37km walk on the day and she kept up. I think I intrigued her as much as she intrigued me, however our compromising heavily conflicted with our individual interests, and our purpose.
She was about 23 or 24 — I forget — and she was more interested in taking her time on the walk, in terms of the distance. She was also very keen on having more of a party with her walk in terms of alcohol — though she did express that she should probably slow down her drinks.
On the otherhand, I had spent May to September binge drinking while tour guiding across the Canadian Rockies. I felt like I had sacrificed a huge part of myself for drink, and for me, the Camino Norte is definitely a dry journey. Likewise, my purpose is for distance because I am testing the essence of my physicality here!
Though I walked a little less than intended, I was satisfied with the distance. Likewise, we also compromised for going out for a drink that evening in San Vicente De La Barquera — a Coca-cola and a Fanta instead of alcohol.
I am at a peculiar stage in my love life — in my life in general — because I didn’t want to engage in anything with her to avoid any confusion on her part. Maybe I should care less on what she would think, but my take on bonding, sexuality, and connection is a lot different now at 31 than perhaps my whole time growing up as a stud football player going through the regular motions in attitude between a life spent partying and promiscuity.
Again, it’s different now with my past and experiences. A little sad in a sense, and partially broken — or maybe very broken. Who knows. Either way, I put up my walls, and she danced around them as we woke up the following morning on the other side of the room.
I woke up irritated because I felt that I was curbing my goals to walk far in distance that morning — and in general — as it was already 10am.
She was slow to get going and was starting her morning with breakfast — something I don’t really do. I was pretty withdrawn because I had my intentions to walk in my mind, so I mentioned that I would start my day, where we could potentially reconvene in Pendueles, which was only 28 km away. She was going to be more intuitive about it and expressed concern that it might be too far for her that day, but she might stop in the town of Buelna — only 2.5km before.
We didn’t debate anything, and I set out the door determined to make up for lost time that morning. The trek was beautiful, and the residual annoyance that I felt earlier was walked off when I sat down for my own morning meal and coffee some 12km later. I sat on a beautiful patio by the river at the end of town wondering if she would cross my path again. She didnt.
Along the way I ended up bumping into two farmiliar faces again, it was Kristoff and Hasse — the older German and Suede duo. Of course, they ended up catching up to me by hopping onto a bus to shortcut their distance. I wasn’t annoyed at this anymore, how I was when they skipped out on Bilbao, in fact I was delighted to see them. The day was particularly hot, and I bumped into them further on down the road as we made our way along the beautiful coastal shoreline of the Atlantic. Such beauty to witness, we followed this coastline past Buelna and into Pendueles. It was only 28km far, and I had a lot more left in me, however part of me decided to sacrifice the distance to see if the Czech girl would show up along my path.
She didn’t, and I spent my afternoon in Pendueles feeling particularly off. I felt that my blood sugar was out of whack as I came down from a quick sugar / caffein crash in combination with the lack of fluids on the hot day.
I settled myself with a proper meal on my own private rock, on what felt like my own private beach. I recovered from my state wondering, and partly hoping that the Czech girl would show up for the company. But as the afternoon transformed itself into the late evening, I figured I was meant to move forward on my own with my original intentions.
My last meal was around 6pm on that rock in Pendueles, and I finished my pushups and mock pullups off the bunk bed in the Albergue. The next morning my plan was set, to walk to Ribadisella about 45km away in order to make up for any lost distance while pining in Pendueles. Moreso, I planned to make the trek without food or rest.
Again, this was yesterday, and the 45km trek from Pendueles to Ribadisella turned into 50km because I had to walk 5km further to San Esteban De Leces due to my late evening arrival — naturally so considering the time to cover such a distance on foot.
The walk there was rather comfortable in hindsight… Well, it was hard physically, but I felt resilient that I could do it without question — and I did. I was motivated to walk long and hard, to push myself to my limits, and to kill it — Whatever that means. I was hard on myself, and I was high that I accomplished what I set out to do by the time I breathlessly strolled into San Esteban Leces. I relished in high spirits and savoured the gigantic evening meal to break my 24 hour fast in the backyard of the Albergue.
That was yesterday’s high
Back to today, I felt like I crashed and burned because the demons of fatigue nipped at my heels all day.
Let me tell you more — I fucking hated everybody, and I didn’t want to let a single soul into my personal circle.
“Don’t fucking talk to me!” I would think as people walked by and mumbled “Good day” , “Buen Camino”, and whatever else.
I wouldn’t say this of course, my problems aren’t their problems so their is no need to lash out on someone else’s kindness. I have monsters, but I’m not a monster myself.
That said, I would reciprocate their greetings with a fake greeting, or shallow wave that was 100% insincere because I was hurting in my self.
Moreso, I hated everyone in my path because I hated myself. And though the exact reasons were seemingly beyond me, the underlying thmese was this:
I don’t understand myself.
Who the fuck am I anymore?! Feelings of helplessness — vulnerability — seeping out of my pores.
This big hulking presence, I should be fucking mean!
Don’t look at me! — Fear Me! I am one scary ass dude!
But, I’m not.
I am soft as fuck, and I just want to relax.
So why am I so motivated to “stay hard” and what the hell does that mean?
Does it mean to be a wall with everyone I meet?
If yes, then why?
Because I am worried about being taken advantage of — or letting others have their way with me, or simply missing the beat to show strength to dominate.
What is this shit?!
What are these weak thoughts confusing my psyche?
Please, for the love of fucking God, shut the fuck up!
I just want certain clarity and acceptance with what I am, and who I am.Thoughts with insanity, G.K.
G. Kourtesiotis, September 15, 2019.
READ TALES FROM THE WALK NO.5: THE MAN WHO SPRINTED THE MARATHON.
start here, Tale #1: TALES FROM THE WALK BEHIND ME, NO.1 – SKIPPING THE UGLY OUT OF LIFE.
read the camino journey blog post: IN THE PRELUDE OF EXPERIENCE: INTENTIONS OF A CAMINO, 1010+ KM ON FOOT FROM THE HEELS OF FRENCH AIRSPACE TO THE LIP OF SPANISH WATERS. PT. 1.
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