I'm thinking about my honeymoon right now. I keep telling everyone my fiance and I plan to see Greece but I'm not entirely sure anymore. I wanted to go to Prague awhile ago but money problems arose from my last relationship. So I seem to have a general lust for Europe. I just switch sides.
However, I thought, why does a person need to do all the stereotypical things on a honeymoon? Why can't I go out and do something completely different? Something that might change my whole perspective on life and freedoms? Well, maybe because that's not like me at all. Of course not! I would never go randomly into a new country and follow a road less travelled. Of course not. Never done it before.
So I present to you, my idea. I want to walk the El Camino de Santiago, the Way of St. James, to Santiago de Compostela. I have been studying it here and there over the last couple years and it's something I definitely want to do before I die. I've spoken about it often to friends and even made pacts with friends I deemed 'good enough to spend a few weeks hike with' to travel this road together. I promised even if I did it, I would do it again just for them and be their guide. This is the way of the road.
I read stories of the Templar Knights and of the promises made to the people and of how it all came crumbling down. I've read about the scallop shells and the protection and magick (though the Christians might not like that part) surrounding the road beneath the Milky Way. Follow the stars, follow your heart, follow your dreams - travel through history and become a part of the world as it once was.
I want to earn my Compostela, which is a certificate presented to pilgrims who have travelled 100km or more by foot. I want to do a little more than this, as this is one of the shorter routes, only taking about a good strenuous 2 days hike or 3-4 days with stops and relaxing. I would like to collect all the stamps possible in a two weeks period, before ending up in Santiago, with a prayer and a compestela.
Not your classic honeymoon destination, I wouldn't think. However, it would be one you would never forget, not for a moment. "Remember how after we got married, we strapped backpacks to ourselves and walked the Road to Santiago?" And we'll display the stamps and compestela in the glass cases of our house and speak fondly of those days until the road calls us back to be guides for the next pilgrims.
Sure, in my head it's fantastical and romantic. I know it's rough and complicated and dehydrating and the packs are heavy. I know it's a lot of walking. I know it's a lot of remembering some semblance of the Spanish I was once fluent in. I am fine with this. I would be proud to undertake the challenges of the Road in the name of Gd and feel history beneath me feet.
If not for my honeymoon, another day. I hate saying 'another day' though, because that's what people always say before they tuck away their dreams for a day that never comes. Still, I speak fondly of taking this trip every time the topic of travel comes up. Maybe it's not the worst idea I've had. But then again, I've had some pretty bad ideas.