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Care to go on the Camino de Santiago ?

November 20, 2009

I just finished reading I’m Off, Then; losing and finding myself on the Camino de Santiago by Hape Kerkeling and I too am ready to venture down the Camino de Santiago but not sure if I would survive the arduous 500 mile pilgrimage. Looking at the 20 percent increase of pilgrims since the 2006 publication of this book; Kerkeling has had this inspiring influence on many.  I have seen the Pyrenees Mountains in Spain while traveling in comfort by train along the northern coast of Spain but never ventured out on a hike in them. It is hard to fathom the pilgrimage to the Spanish shrine of St. James that the author took by foot from Saint-Jean Pied de Port to Santiago de Compestela in 6 weeks carrying a 25 pound backpack all the way. Hape is one of Germany’s most famous comedians and he shares his tale in a very appealing journal style. The description of fellow pilgrims, both the weird and the wonderful, and the description of the sites to see, some planned and others unexpected were very entertaining. I loved how he ended each day’s entry with a little nugget of knowledge gained along the way. I couldn’t help but imagine what nuggets would follow my own entry if I were to follow his path. My favorite day was on July 3, 2001 when Hape Kerkeling met God. I wanted more detail, deeper insights but he was not forth coming. I’m just glad he made this discovery, better late than never.

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