Letting Go


There is a lot of talk about “mindfulness” these days- the idea of living in the present moment in a non-judgemental way- just being open and accepting to every new experience as it comes along. I have been trying to practice this idea as I walk, as each day brings new experiences that in turn offer choices about how I can react. Last night I indulged in the luxury of my own room and got a late start. At times, I ended up amongst tour groups of pilgrims that all start and stop and move at the same pace. While each person walks their own Camino in their own way, I missed the quiet and solitude that I’ve grown accustomed to over the past week. At times I felt like a lemming, simply following behind a group of chittering others, all heading for an unknown and as yet, unseen destination. I felt sorry for the poor older woman who was serving at the wayside cafe when one of said tour groups descended upon her en masse. I had arrived just moments before and had ordered my bogadillo (ham and cheese baguette) and Coca Cola. It took quite some time for her to serve everyone and she bypassed me with my sandwich in her flustered state. One does learn patience at these times. I made sure I tipped her well for her efforts and took my sandwich outdoors to make room for the others. Just as I was exiting with my long awaited lunch, a man passed me in the doorway, and as luck would have it, at that very moment, sneezed directly onto my lunch! I had to laugh- and I ate it anyway. I figure with every hostel I sleep in and every public restroom- what’s a little germs amongst pilgrims? If only letting go of other things- like the expectations we have of others or how people should treat each other, could be as easy to let go of. I’m still working on those things. There are a few things I hope to symbolically “let go” of when I reach the ocean at Finisterra. Perhaps that is why we pilgrims are all making our way there- driven by some unseen force for some unknown purpose- like lemmings. (P.S. It has been proven to be a myth that lemmings throw themselves off cliffs and die- they are instinctively drawn to migrate towards water- Personally, I’m not planning any cliff diving- rest assured! )

2 thoughts on “Letting Go

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