In a few short hours Kevin and I will be boarding the first of our three flights to Spain. It was over a year ago that we decided to maybe do this Camino de Santiago thing. And now it’s here. Crazy crazy crazy!
I got a lot of questions yesterday about how much we’re walking and where exactly we’re going to be stopping, so if you’re new here, here’s some basic info:
Kevin and I are walking the Camino Frances route of the Camino de Santiago. We are starting in Pamplona, which is about 450 miles to Santiago. To get to Santiago in time we need to average about 15 miles a day (I’ve been saying 13 miles a day based on our guidebook but I just did the math and I just realized the guidebook was wrong. GREAT!). If you want to learn about the route we are following and the towns/cities we are stopping in you can do so here.
To make this a little more fun, our friends Lindsey and Jesse have decided to turn our trip into a gambling affair, and they have put together a bet on how many miles we will actually walk. We bought FitBits to track our progress, and Lindsey has access to our logins so we can’t cheat. She’s going to put together a tumblr with updates as well. If any of you reading want to join in, just email Lindsey at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will send over all the info.
K&S have awesomely agreed to track the total miles they are going to walk (with a FitBit or something similar) and allow all their loved ones to bet on the number of miles they actually walkSO let’s make some money off of our friends soul searching journey! If you are interested in betting here are the details:
**Bets are $10. Email me with the total number of miles you think they will walk and your name and you can paypal me the money.
-yes you can bet as many times as you would like – it’s $10 per bet.
-whoever is the closest to the actual miles walked wins the pool – over or under counts
-if there is a tie, the pool will be split between the winners
-K&S will not know the numbers people are betting
-20% of the proceeds will go to the Sunsar Maya so it’s a tax write off
and we are helping little underprivileged children
-I am working on a tumblr page so betting members can see updates and talk shit
to each other or send words of love and support to K&S
So by now you must be asking how far is the potential route? Well they are walking from Pamplona to Santiago. Following the Camino Frances route, that is 718 km, which comes out to 446 miles over the course of about 30 days. So if they walk all stages of the camino without skipping or taking any taxis or buses, they would walk 446 miles. However, they have the option of taking cabs or buses at anytime which could shorten their walk – or hell they may get lost and add extra miles – hehe.
Only miles walked on the trail with a backpack on will count. Therefore, if they get to town, put their packs down and then walk around town to eat and drink – those miles will not be counted towards their total walked miles.
I think the pool is around $200 right now, but the more money the more fun, so if you want to send in your own bet just send Lindsey an email.
Also, Sunsar Maya is a non-profit started by our very good friend Jehan, who divides her time between living in San Francisco and working at the orphanage her non-profit supports in Nepal. She is awesome so I’m extra excited that her organization is going to get some money, even if it’s only a little.
Anyway, I’m going to try and blog as much as I can while I’m on the way, but because I am only bringing my iPad mini, I’m not sure how often that will be. However, I will most likely be checking in on social media every time I have wifi, so if you would like to follow along you can do so here on instagram or here on facebook.
Adios friends! Wish us luck!
Tomorrow morning Kevin and I start our three flight trek over to Spain. After 18+ hours of travel we should be getting to Pamplona sometime Thursday afternoon. We will take a day to get our bearings and adjust, and then we’ll start walking Saturday morning.
We’re as prepared as we can be at this stage, I think. Yesterday I laid out all our stuff for the next six weeks and it was shockingly bare when I saw it all laid out side by side. You’re only “supposed” to bring 10% of your body weight, which would give me less than 11 pounds to work with. And since my bag itself weighs almost 4…. well, you do the math. It means I get to bring next to nothing. I’m basically bringing 3 shirts, 2 pairs of pants, and then an “evening” outfit which is a tunic dress thing. That’s it.
Not pictured are our sleeping bags (sprayed with permethrin to prevent bedbugs!), toiletries, walking poles, and my iPad, but everything else is laid out in that little picture. My life for the next six weeks.
Well, for the next four weeks, at least. You better believe that once we get to Santiago I’ll be running as fast as I can to the closest Zara.
Yesterday after just a couple of hours of cleaning the house and packing my feet started to hurt. Yes, my feet were aching simply from CLEANING THE HOUSE. I fear this does not bode well for my future walking.
However, part of this may have had to do with the fact that at the wedding this past weekend (which was AMAZING!!!!) I may have consumed a bit too much wine, and I started to do my little shimmy shoulder dance that I tend to do when I’m intoxicated.
Unfortunately for me, this resulted in the following:
My left ankle has been feeling a bit wonky and achy ever since.
Wearing 4+ inch heels to an outdoor wedding a mere three days before we are supposed to walk 500 miles. I’m a smart girl, let me tell you!
I also attempted to test out my walking poles this weekend (which I mentioned I have yet to use), and my friend Derek (the groom) told me I looked like Walt Jr. So uh, that’s awesome.
Anyway, I’m trying my best to not worry about all of this stuff because 1) there’s not a lot I can do about it, and 2) everyone that has done the camino keeps telling me that “the camino will provide” and to trust in that. So that’s what I’m doing.
Kevin said the more he learns about the Camino the more it sounds like some sort of psychedelic trip. There are a million Camino legends and everyone you talk to that has done it before will tell you things like “don’t plan, for if it’s meant to be part of your way, it will happen” “if you trust, the camino will provide” “the camino gives you what you don’t even know you need” “pick an intention and the camino will help it flourish!” and similar sentiments.
It’s a little more hippy dippy than I’m used to, but hey, I’m going with it! One of my hopes for this trip is that I get some clarity on what exactly it is I want to do with my life. I’ve managed to get really good at figuring out what I don’t want to do, but I’m still not so sure what I do want to do with this life of mine. And so I hope that if I start the Camino with the intention of self-discovery and exploration and clarification, the Camino spirit will work it’s magic on me, too.
After all, it’s a lot more fun to think of it like that than just a really long walk, right?
Either way, I can’t wait.
P.S. Thank you so much for all of the encouraging comments on my last post. It was exactly what I needed to help calm my nerves. Kevin refers to all you lovely people as my “support group” and it’s kind of true. So thank you again!
I woke up with a lot of anxiety this morning. I’m sure this is just a culmination of being super busy the last few days trying to wrap up loose ends with work, drinking every night this week because of social activities, and not sleeping so well because of the combination of the two, but it’s already 10 am and I still haven’t been able to shrug the ridden with anxiety feeling off. Our trip is so soon and I’m getting worried that there is just not enough time to get done everything we still need to get done.
For the last week I’ve been frantically trying to get together all of the last minute stuff we might need, and as far as packing goes, I think we’re good. Like I said before, I’ve become an absolute expert in outdoor gear, and I’ve spent more time than I care to admit researching things like wine, food, and hotels, so in the planning aspect, I feel okay. But I still have that fear that as soon as we leave I’m going to realize I forgot something huge and freak out.
And then there’s the whole physical part of it all. The fear that Kevin and I are massively under-prepared for the physical part of the Camino de Santiago has been slowly taking over my psyche. As I mentioned before, we haven’t done much training. And as in much, I mean we’ve done three longish hikes. That’s it. We bought walking poles a couple of months ago and we haven’t even taken them out of the packaging nor figured out how to use them yet. Way to go us!
For months I have been saying to myself (and others) “it’s just walking! how hard can it be?” but as evidenced by the horror stories on the Camino de Santiago message boards, it can be very hard. Blisters, shin splints, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis…. there is a whole long list of things that can happen to your body from prolonged walking and make you unable to continue. And I so don’t want to be one of those people that halfway in has to stop because I didn’t train enough leading up to it.
But in one week Kevin and I will be landing in Pamplona, so at this stage there’s not a whole lot I can do about it. And worrying isn’t going to change or help anything.
So instead I’m going to take a deep breath, trust that it’s all going to work out, turn off my computer, and hop in the car with Kevin to drive to Ojai for the wedding of two of our favorite people.
And just typing that sentence made me feel better.
It will all work out, and life is good.
Me and the gorgeous bride-to-be a couple of months ago in Hood River, Oregon.
Happy Thursday friends!
Today is my last day of work.
Leaving a job, any job, is always kind of weird.
You go from spending 40+hours of your week with people
to suddenly seeing them maybe a couple of times a year.
Plus, this is the first time I’ve ever left a job
without knowing what my next step will be,
so it feels extra strange.
It’s exciting, and I’m so happy I’m doing it,
but now that the date has actually arrived it’s also a bit nerve racking,
as I have no idea what my future has in store.
Though I suppose that’s life.
You never really know.
And while the unknown can be a bit scary,
I feel really confident that good things are on the horizon.
And now some shameless self promotion…
I started a facebook page for this blog.
I held off on doing this for awhile,
because starting a facebook “fan” page (gag)
makes me feel so incredibly narcissistic and self-promoty,
but I finally gave in.
Because here’s the thing…
I love facebook.
I want to be one of those people that’s too cool for it.
One of those people that has
“better things to do” than go facebook stalk.
But I’m just not.
Instead I’m one of those people that loves facebook.
Someone that checks it multiple times a day
and likes friends’ photos and uses it to keep in touch
with people I haven’t been in touch with in years.
To me, it’s a way to connect.
Since I won’t be bringing a laptop,
I’m not sure how much I’ll be able to post
while I’m walking the Camino de Santiago.
But I will be bringing my iPhone,
so I figure this will be the best way to keep up with me,
as I’ll easily be able to post some quick updates
and photos and what not.
If you want to follow along,
you can do so by liking it right here.
Lastly, do any of you watch Dexter?
And if you do, what did you think of the finale?
Anyone else terribly disappointed and underwhelmed?
Dude, between that and Breaking Bad,
Sunday night was rough.
So…. a few weeks ago I was in my friend Lindsey’s wedding.
It. was. awesome.
Kevin was a groomsmen, which made it extra awesome, because it was the first (and probably only) time that we’ve ever been in a wedding together. We had a blast.
The ceremony was at city hall, and the reception was at a beautiful boutique hotel right downtown. It was elegant and classy and fancy and we had a so much fun that I don’t remember most of it.
But that is not what this post is about.
This post is about hair.
Bridesmaid hair in particular.
My bridesmaid hair, at Lindsey’s wedding.
I’m very lucky that I’ve been blessed with a lot of awesome friends who for some reason have loved me enough to give me the honor of being in their weddings. And often as a bridesmaid, you and the other ladies decide to splurge and get your hair and makeup done.
However, committing to this is always somewhat of a gamble, because while a lot of hair and makeup stylists are amazing, a lot of them are… not. But you decide to take your chances, and show up armed with a lot of photos of what you want, and hope for the best.
And this usually works out. You usually end up looking great!
But sometimes the opposite happens.
Case in point: Lindsey’s wedding.
The woman that Lindsey had hired was fantastic.
Her assistant, who did my hair, was not quite so fantastic.
When it was my turn I took out my photo and told her that I wanted loose curls pinned back.
I showed her this picture:
She looked at it and says “oh, super easy!” and got to work. 45 minutes later, and she was done!
She slowly walked me to a mirror to show me her masterpiece….
(Keep in mind, the photo above is what I asked for)
And this is what I got:
Needless to say, I was not exactly thrilled with the look, but because I am a total coward when it comes to confrontation and telling someone I’m unhappy with something, I said nothing. I just kind of mumbled an “ohhhhhh…..” and then ran upstairs where the other girls were.
As expected, they burst into laughter and proceeded to tell me that there was no way I could go out in public with my hair looking like that.
Long story short, I took out my hair, brushed it out completely, curled it all over again, and had my friend Gretchen help me pull it into a side ponytail.
It goes without saying that it looked infinitely better:
The hair ladies watched as we did this, but said nothing. No offers to help. No apologies. No questions. Nada. It was awkward.
When the time came to pay, the assistant who had worked on my hair had already left. I asked the main hairstylist (it was her company) how much I owed, and I told her that as she knew, both the bride and I were very unhappy with my hair so we took it out and I redid it myself. She laughed and said “ohhhhohohoho” (she was French, that is my impersonation of a french giggle) and then proceeded to tell me I owed the full amount.
I was not happy.
So a few days later, I went to yelp and shared this disdain with the internet.
And what do you know… suddenly I get an email from the main hairstylist apologizing profusely and offering to refund me in the hopes that I amend or delete my yelp review.
I told her that if she refunded me I would happily change my yelp review.
She refunded me.
I deleted my review.
Happiness all around!
But this got me thinking…. this woman had all five star reviews until mine.
And once she refunded me, I deleted my review, and she was back up to her 100% five star rating.
So was my bad experience just a fluke? Or are most people essentially “paying off” their bad reviews in order to keep their reviews positive?
Man, the power of yelp.
Social media is crazy.
Have you ever been asked to change or delete a review?
And more importantly, have you ever had hair as bad as mine?!?