Sunrises to Santiago: Searching for Purpose on the Camino de Santiago
By Gabriel Schirm
A fresh new voice is on the Camino book scene, and it can now be heard via Audible, narrated by the author himself. Sunrises to Santiago is a journey of a young couple who walked the 500 miles of the Camino Frances in 30 days, an ambitious feat. Gabriel and his wife Amy lived in Spain for three years prior to their Camino and have a great appreciation for Spanish cuisine and lifestyle.
He leads with a solid introduction on the history and background of the Camino. Along the way they encounter a few of the unpleasant aspects of the Camino such as bedbugs, snoring and blisters. But the author reveals so much more along his journey, including heartfelt stories of the people they meet along the way, and questions about his true purpose in life. I could relate to both Gabriel and Amy on so many different levels. Whenever Gabriel veers into cynicism or self-doubt, Amy drops some words of wisdom on the meaning of life. She is a guru! I loved hearing that she planned to start yoga teacher training after their Camino. This is my plan after my Camino as well.
Happy Friday! I have a new recommendation to add to the growing list of favorite Camino blogs. Gabriel Schirm, author of Sunrises to Santiago, runs a beautifully designed blog called The Curious Life Project, at gabrielschirm.com.
Indeed, Gabriel’s curiosities have been fun to read—from Spain Travel Tips For Foodie Outdoor Enthusiasts to How To Get Time Off For Long Distance Hikes And Travel— a burning question for most Americans afflicted with wanderlust. Gabriel covered the topic thoroughly and even took the time to do a poll and include stats. He writes, “I asked the simple question, How Did You Get The Time Off To Walk Long Distance Treks? Here are the combined results from about 100 respondents:
Quit My Job – 2%
Flexible Boss – 14%
I Work For Myself – 25%
Independently Wealthy – 0%
Saved All Of My Vacation Time – 15%
Student On Break – 5%
Educator On Summer Break – 11%
Other – 10%”
The post that got me hooked was Must Eat Foods of the Camino de Santiago. Gabriel and his wife lived in Granada for two years and walked the Camino Frances, so they know what they’re talking about.
Love is the Camino de Santiago
By Gabriel Schirm
In the popular 2003 film, Love Actually, Hugh Grant opens the movie with these wise words, “Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge – they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.”
I met my wife, Amy, in a coffee shop 10 years ago. It was a moment that turned me from a love skeptic, into a believer. Instantly I went from thinking romantic comedies were a cruel Hollywood form of torture, to finding I had something in common with those sappy love stories. Up until that point, love at first sight was a lie, a ridiculous dream, that is, until it happened to me. I had been struck by lightning, and it felt so good. After we were married on a beautiful June summer day in the mountains of Colorado, we moved to Spain, and spent 2 wonderful years falling madly in love with a country. When it came time to go home, we decided to walk the Camino de Santiago together, as one final farewell to our temporary home. Continue reading