Camino minus 29 Days – Grand Malaise


The definition of “malaise” is “a general feeling of discomfort, illness, or uneasiness, whose exact cause is difficult to identify.”

My training plan was to walk a few miles every day and I usually do. Today, however, I just couldn’t get the energy. Not enough sleep? Too much walking? Bad breakfast?

I don’t know but I couldn’t get it together until too late in the day to go out.

I have the feeling I have things on my mind simmering too far below the surface to be thought through, yet too close to the surface to be ignored. I feel restless, but can’t move.

The Camino has me in a holding pattern. There isn’t much I can do to get ready now except walk.

I have my backpack and my boots are on the way. I don’t need any more clothes (OK, maybe a new pair of pants and a warm weather shirt).  I have five pairs of socks.

The other things I need to pack are all minor – gloves, Compeed, zip-loc bags.

I’ve read books and articles about the Camino, been a Camino Forum member and asked questions of experienced “peregrinos.”

I’ve watched videos on YouTube and I’ve made the few reservations that I need.

I have walked the miles to Patch often enough that, although still challenging, I know I can do it. I’ve participated in long Volksmarches.

I’ll wash and waterproof my ol’ faithful red rain jacket.

I’m running out of ways to prepare. I am in danger of overpreparing.

Because I’ll be gone for five weeks, I can’t get involved in long-term projects (the theater, learning long-arm quilting, developing a plan to teach) until I return.

With only a month to go, I don’t have time to get involved in short-term projects either  (making a quilt, starting an on-line class, starting just about anything).

I’m on the runway waiting for launch.

I looked up the definition of pilgrimage and came up with several suggestions.

” . . . a journey to a place associated with someone or something well known or respected . . . ” – New Oxford American Dictionary

” . . . a journey or search of moral or spiritual significance . . .” – Wikipedia

” . . . a journey in which one travels a distance to pay their respects to a religious icon . . . ” –

” . . . a ritual journey with a hallowed purpose . . . ” – Illuminated Journey

” . . . a long journey or search, especially on of exalted purpose or moral significance . . . ” – the Free Dictionary

” . . . invitations from God to visit spiritual locations and signposts left behind by God . . . ” –

” . . . a personal invitation from God . . . ” –

Surprisingly, some of the most heartfelt and thoughtful came from tour companies selling trips to pilgrimage sites.

I hope that tomorrow I have the energy to get out and do what I need to do. Tomorrow is my big trek day of the week (walk to Patch) and the more I do it, the less I look forward to it. I know the parts that are hard and don’t want to do them. I know the parts that are boring and long to take my headphones.

I know I have to go if the weather is rainy, or wet, or cold and I just DON’T WANT TO DO IT!

I need a good night’s sleep.


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