Almost two years have passed since Theresa and I returned from walking Camino Ingles and volunteering as greeters at the albuergue in Ribadiso. We had planned to return to Spain in September 2020. And like many others, our plans were hijacked by the Coronavirus Pandemic.
We waited patiently for travel to Spain (and everywhere else) to resume. I guess that’s a lie because we were not patient at all. In fact, when we gave up hope of returning to Spain in a timely manner we decided to do a domestic Camino. During the fall and winter months we spent many evenings plotting a trip to New Mexico. It wouldn’t exactly be like a Camino in Spain, but there would be lots of hikes in beautiful nature and visits to many mystical, spiritual and Native American sites. We were surprised when we discovered that New Mexico was closed too due to high levels of COVID.
Now what? We decided to make a plan to go somewhere in the fall of 2021. Our 1st choice would be Spain, 2nd choice New Mexico and if neither of those two became available, the default would be to do a Minnesota road trip. It was looking like Minnesota would be the likely winner. But magically in July, Europe opened its doors to the United States. I was still a bit apprehensive about traveling to Spain. Then we found a round trip airfare for $505 and that was the deal maker.
Walking the Maseta: We decided to take it easy this time. On our first trek across Spain in 2017 (the 500 mile one) we skipped a small segment called The Maseta. We weren’t alone. Many consider it to be hot, flat and boring. There are long views of big skies, flocks of sheep and rolling fields of grain. Being slow walkers, we needed to cut it so we would arrive in Santiago to meet my husband David. We’ve always wondered what we missed and now it’s time to find out. In addition, we want to walk the last two days of Camino Ingles, which Theresa missed in 2019 due to an ankle injury. After completing those two goals, we have seven days to explore Spain — Bilbao? San Sebastián? Barcelona? You’ll find out when we get there.
Travel in a Covid World: Tomorrow I’ll write about the new normal and how global travel has changed in a short two years and what’s required to leave and re-enter the country.