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Friday, 29 April 2016

One day to go

Tomorrow, we fly with Singapore Airlines from Sydney.  Today is day one of the holiday, intended to be spent at home but instead alone with my sick grandkids.  It's been a warm autumn day with a top of 18 degrees Celsius in Canberra.  Staring out the kitchen window on this sun-drenched, cloudless day reminds me of how it so often is at 30,000 feet in the sky, staring out the aircraft window, soaking up the sun's rays in the warm solitude of the window seat, pretending to be alone.  And so, I sit about, drinking coffee and dreaming of far off places that, for us, are not so far off.

On 8 May, we will arrive in Porto in Portugal.  We begin walking the Camino only a few days later.

The famous scallop - a common symbol on the Camino

Getting very near the time

It's now getting very near the time when we head off on yet another journey.  On Saturday 7 May, 2016, we jet off on a nine-week jaunt to Europe.  

Our first port of call will be Porto, where we meet up with two Canberra friends.  Together, we will walk the Camino, starting in Baiona, and, over the following week, traversing the varying coastal terrain on foot northward to our destination - Santiago de Compostela!  For the first 10 days or so, we will be on the Iberian Peninsula.  We then fly to Hamburg, where we collect two German cousins.  For the following two and a half weeks, the four of us will drive through Germany and Poland, visiting icons like Dresden and tragic epicentres such as Auschwitz.  In the south-west of Poland, we will stay in a 13th century castle, while visiting another that is connected to our family history.  After we farewell our cousins back in Hamburg, Jean and I will spend a few days in Copenhagen, a few more in London, and then three weeks in Wales.  During that time, our Canberra friends will join us, and we'll visit Scotland briefly.   It should be a great blog, so come with us.

Why is this blog called "To The Camino and Beyond"?  It follows earlier, similar sounding blog titles. "To The Caribbean With Love" traced our movements around the UK and Finland, culminating in a cruise of eight islands in the Caribbean. The previous blog, written in the US in 2014, was called "To 'Vegas With Love", when our trip there culminated in the black jack and roulette tables of the city of vice.  Our earlier blog was "To Ephesus With Love", which documented a lengthy trek across Europe, taking in 15 countries, the Mediterranean, and the ancient world.  Our blogs take their names from earlier, famous productions such as "To Rome With Love" and "To Moscow With Love".  Thus, a precedent has long since been set!

Getting near the time to our departure...