What the Spirit of the Camino taught me about love
By Jane Blanchard
My husband Dennis and I walked the Camino Francés in 2011. In 2013, we attempted a biciCamino, bicycling from Barcelona to León where I crashed. After completing 500 miles, we terminated our Camino by bike. Even though we could have walked from León to Santiago to receive the Compostela, we decided to walk the Camino Portugués instead.
As with most pilgrims, the Camino provided me with many insights and gifts. I developed a love for nature that stills calls to me daily, a kindred spirit with other itinerants that I now pass along to people who come and go in my life, and a deeper understanding of what it means to live in the now. The spirit of the Camino is forever in my heart: be kind, be aware, and be open to the possibilities.
One of the most surprising gifts that the Camino provided was the rekindling of our love for each other. Dennis and I had been married 38 years when we did our first Camino. We were close and had created a lifetime of wonderful memories. We were comfortable and secure in our relationship. We had grown accustomed to each other and were accepting of one another. Our friends looked at us as a paradigm of love.