Love On The Camino
Walking long days can push you to your edge.
So when you’re walking long days with other people, sometimes everyone’s edges bump up against one another.
But more often, what comes out is something beautiful.
Someone will have a blister, and someone else will have exactly what they need.
Or someone runs out of snacks, and someone else offers an extra tangerine.
Often it’s in the small things that you see love on the Camino:
Slowing your pace just enough that the person next to you won’t fall behind.
Carrying your roommate’s suitcase down to the lobby.
Grabbing an extra coffee or an extra cold drink.
A host offering to find a restaurant in town where 12 people can sit together.
Someone listening to someone else tell about losing someone they love.
Someone making someone laugh when they are too tired to keep going.
On the Camino, there is love to be found every day if you are awake to it.
And I suppose that is true everywhere in the world.
But on the Camino, I am paying better attention. I am watching for it. And I think maybe I am more ready to give love as well.
Ted and Stephanie, who you might remember as the owners of an extra suitcase, arrived on the Camino after they had been traveling together all over Europe. They were sightseeing, but they were also still working remotely, so they would start their work day in the afternoon.
I expected that they might be tired of traveling and juggling work. I thought they might even be a little tired of each other when we all met up in Porto.
But they were not. Far from it.
They literally held hands every day while we walked the Camino. Not all day, but at multiple times throughout the day. It was absolutely precious.
They were good-natured and genuinely happy to be together. And seemingly happy to be with all of us as well.
They showed up with love on the Camino.
And this has been a theme all year…folks showing up with hearts open and ready for the walk and for the new friends they are going to make along the way.
It’s been fun to watch.
Since I often pray that I can meet everything and everyone in my path with love, I have enjoyed learning from others this year about how to do just that.