We only have less than two months before the end of semester and I am pre-occupied with my preparation for my Sabbatical - and especially for my running/walking pilgrimage to the Camino de Santiago de Compostela. It is an 800 km trek which starts at St. John Pied de Port, a village South of France at the base of the Pyrennees mountains, across the northern part of Spain and finishing at the western city of the Santiago de Compostela, where the tomb of St. James the Apostle is believed to be located. The Camino de Santiago is one of the three major pilgrimage center of Christianity (besides Jerusalem and Rome). For more than a thousand years, pilgrims have gone to Santiago de Compostela, mostly on foot. It usually takes 30-35 days to walk on the Camino Frances. I plan to do it in 21-24 days (combining walking and running). I will start my pilgrimage on July 12, after my summer course in Rome (Ecumenical & Interreligious Dialogue). I will be carrying a 15-lb backpack including an ultra-light tent, so that I can sleep under the stars.
My physical preparation is underway. I run-walk for 6-8 hours once a week, and 2-3 hours thrice a week. After Easter, I will run-walk across Mindanao (from Iligan to Davao, 400 km). I still have one month of running/walking up and down the mountain of Busay during my one-month hermitage before I leave for Rome in June.
Here are some of the books I have been reading as part of my preparation.