The French Way: Trekking the 40-Day El Camino de Santiago
There has been a 1000 % increase in the number of pilgrims walking the Camino over the past 20 years. Stressed out people are fast turning to walking in the slow lane.
This is Lorraine Thomson’s epic story of her solo 800km trek from St Pied de Port in France, over the relentless Pyrenees, across Spain and to the ancient burial place of St James – Santiago de Compostela. There is drama, challenge and exaltation throughout the 40-days traversing varying terrain, altitudes and weather conditions. There is disruption due to unforeseen circumstances and a return to complete the ordeal, which made the challenge all the more fulfilling. For every step she took, she was hoping more than anything this would be one step towards her much-loved youngest son Jacob, overcoming his life-threatening metastatic osteosarcoma.
The journey was physical, mental, historic, religious, geographical, spiritual and social – all uniquely combined. This is a one of a kind adventure story that demonstrates what time away from city life can do for your inner self and for setting life strategies.
Lorraine Thomson, a former magazine publisher and editor, lives in Auckland and now works as an independent director, an ArcAngel investor and member of Global Women (New Zealand’s most influential women leaders). From 1 October she joins the board of Te Araroa – New Zealand’s Trail - where she will be using her experience trekking the El Camino to raising the profile of New Zealand’s lesser known 3,000 km trail from Cape Reinga in the North to Bluff in the South.
While walking the El Camino, Lorraine made the decision to study for an MBA and is now part way through this University of Auckland master’s degree. Lorraine has run four marathons, trekked from one side of England to the other along Hadrian’s Wall and cycled both the 160km Round Lake Taupo event and the 300km Alps to Ocean trail.