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Life Throws Curveballs

14 Oct

…..but that doesn’t mean you have to cower.

My Camino hasn’t gone as planned. That was hard to come to terms with. However, the Camino takes and the Camino gives. I’ve finally welcomed the changes with open arms, and it has been a godsend.

Am I still a bit unhappy? Sure. Like 8%. The other 92% is having a fantastic time. Remember, it’s all about the journey. Sure, the destination is nice, but the journey is the bulk of the adventure. Don’t let blinders keep you from seeing life happen.

Why this post? I’m sitting in a café in O Mesón do Vento. It’s raining and 49F outside. I’m pretty much soaked, and the café con leche hits the spot. My left leg has started hurting again, and I’m weighing pros and cons on the next choice (mainly how much more soaked do I want to be).

To quote Grace and Favour: “…..but she was happy!” And I realized, I am. It’s taken over a year to get back to this point, and I know the time it took was necessary. Was I impatient? Very much so. Did I realize the time needed prior? Of course not.

Life’s not perfect. Don’t try and force it to be. Let it run its course, adjust where you can, and everything will work out in the end, even if it’s not the way you expected or initially wanted.

Life will throw you curveballs. Question is: will you catch them, or will you cower?

xox

Jess

Camino Inglés, Day 1: Ferrol to Neda

10 Oct

Stats:

Starting Point: Hotel Silva (previously walked from hotel to starting point on Monday)

Ending Point: Pensión Residencia Maragota

Steps: 20,271

Miles: 8.86

Overall thought: beautiful country, but why was this on my bucket list again?

Seriously though, I thought I was going to die at the 7mi point. Out of water, no fountains, I was overheated and dehydrated. The only place to sit was on the ground, but if I did that there was no guarantee I would stand up again.

I never quit.

I never called for a taxi, or caught a bus.

I made it to Neda.

Then I slept for an enternity. Woke ul at 1930 and contemplated dinner, since all I had eaten was a few strawberries, some nuts, and a cliff bar. Said nope, rolled over, and went back to sleep.

I hope Day 2 is a bit more smooth. And I still need to find a poncho, or a bin liner, or something, because rain is still in the forecast for the next few days.

Anywho, here’s some photos from Day 1.

xox

Jess

And so it begins

Well, if it’s THAT easy to get home…..lol

Pilgrim arrow! Pilgrim arrow!

When the tide is out……

No clue, but they’re cool looking. Reminded me of Harry Potter, tbh.

A hot pink house!

The church after a hideous hour of walking uphill

Its cemetary.

Goats!!

Donkey!!

Which way do I go? Which way do I go? (I went left)

100km to go!!

Neda

Trenhotel: Madrid a Ferrol

8 Oct

Mainly a photo post, as I climbed aboard, was shown my compartment, showered and passed out. Tidbits may or may not be dispersed throughout.

Not bad. And he put the top bunk up for me. Mine folded up too, if you wanted to sit on stools.

My compartment key

Toiletries kit that was included

Glow in the dark emergency signs

When I woke up (and I slept hard), I got dressed and went to the cafeteria car for a couple of cafes con leche, and a croissant.

After that I repacked, enjoyed watching towns roll by, and relaxed. Not a bad way to travel. I’ll make sure my flight is a bit closer to train departure though.

Next post: Museo Naval Ferrol

xox

Jess

Travel to Madrid, part deux

8 Oct

This probably shouldn’t even be a post on it’s own, but you can’t have a part 1 without at least a part 2, right?

Our flight to Madrid was uneventful. I had hoped for more sleep, but managed almost 3hrs between the dinner and breakfast services, which isn’t bad considering the flight was only 6hrs. I swear, going to Newark threw everything off for me. I’m used to 10hr international flights, so having it split into 2 30%/70% ones threw a wrench in my routine. Life, right?

I did end up with no one next to me, praise be! Lol. Extra room for my rowmate and myself!

As far as the rest goes, here’s a few fotos and then I’m signing off. Love y’all!

Can you tell I’m half dead to the world lololol

And so begins flight numero dos!

Because Mia loves them (yuck!)

Almost there!

Goodbye plane that hit the worst turbulence ever

Madrid Airport, groovy all day.

Random shuttle shot as we head to Terminal 4 aka the airport metro station

Til next time,

Xox

Jess

Travel Day to Madrid, part 1.

6 Oct

Word of the Day: Fatigued

Got up before my alarm went off at 0230. Got to the Parking Spot 30min before my reservation. Only had to wait behind 1 person at TSA. Timing was on my side.

Then I get to Newark only to find out my layover went from 6hrs to 8hrs. Le sigh. But hey, it can only be worse. Like the woman handling an overseas flight by herself with 4 kids? She earned those 2 beers she had at lunch. The woman with the screaming kid? She earned the 10min nap in her chair once her child fell asleep. The older couple being pushed in wheelchairs? Well, idk what they are traveling to or from, but kudos to them for not letting any health issues stop them. So yes, having to wait an additional 2hrs? No biggie.

But here I am, sitting at my gate, charging my phone, and writing in my Adventure Book. As busy as this airport usually is, I’m happy I’m here during non-peak time. It’ll be interesting to people watch once like 1600 rolls around.

(Oh, and my knees are still sore from being crammed into the back of the chair in front of me.)

Stay tuned for part two, coming your way sometime tomorrow, along with my “First Day in Madrid” recap.

xox

Jess

It’s 4a on a Saturday. Even on my schedule I should be asleep. At DFW.

Obligatory “shoes and airport carpet” foto.

Awkward bathroom selfie at Newark

Night before I begin my Pilgrimage

5 Oct

Okay, so technically it’s 8 hours before I begin.

And I’m still not packed 😄

Life has thrown some curve balls at me this week. On top of work being chaotic because of the sort opening (and my need to have everything as perfect as possible), my banking info was stolen, AND this afternoon I came home to my aircon leaking into the guest bathroom.

I mean, seriously?? Is this a pre-Camino test? If I can handle this week, then walking 74mi will be a breeze! *knock on wood*

So let’s see. Packing wise, I’m doing okay; just slow going……….

45min later, have a packing list via fotos:

Necessities (journal, pilgrim credencial, shell, and waist wallet)

Electricals (I eliminated the usb reading light after this foto)

First aid items, diaper pins to pin stuff to backpack, carabiners, and S-hooks.

Toiletries, meds, and tissues.

Clothing: 2 sports bras, 2prs Darn Tough wool socks, 3 tank tops, 2 kimonos/shawls, and 1 scarf.

Hard to tell, but long sleeve zipup workout hoodie, 2prs of leggings, and the two drysacks.

Hairbrush, guidebook, two towels, silk liner and silk pillowcase (bedbugs be damned!), and the chilly mini neck towel.

A most excellent guidebook!!

All packed up and ready to go! (Oh, need to write my last name on my boots. One of the carabiners will be used to keep the shoes together to avoid them being mistaken for someone elses)

Closeup of patches and shell. (Also, 32oz waterbottle in side pocket)

What cracks me up the most is that, even with all that I’m carrying, this pack is still lighter than my work backpack lol.

Will update tomorrow night sometime, or else Sunday morning after I arrive in Spain.

Much love everyone!

xox

Jess

6 days! (and no order to the thoughts in this post)

30 Sep

I leave for Spain in less than a week! I’m ridiculously excited, even if I am exhausted from this work project. You can always sleep when you’re dead, right?

Ever feel like you’re too prepared for a trip? I’ve been going through mental checklists the last few days: accommodations? passport? euros? clothing? backpack? blister kit? extra bandaids? both pairs of wool socks? I know I have everything ready, but my anxiety kicks in, so I just deal with it. Though, I do need to decide on what kind of waist wallet to wear. I could use a money pack to go around my neck, but the thought of walking with it like that already makes my neck react. It also doesn’t help that the weather is going to be a mix of partly cloudy and rain (that reminds me, need to buy a poncho now). It may come down to how I feel the night before I leave and just choose the waist wallet based on that night’s mood lol.

I still have people asking me why I’m doing this. Then, when they hear “pilgrimage”, they get *that* look on their face, and I shut down, because I’m not trying to get in a religious chat with anyone. I’m doing this for me. I need a spiritual retreat; a time for my soul to heal. It also doesn’t hurt that both the Camino AND Spain are on my bucket list, so 2-3 birds with one stone.

Spinning the wheels for a moment, as I was sitting at my altar at home a couple of nights ago, I did let my mind wander to how I’m really feeling towards the start of my Camino. Am I nervous? Of course. Nervous and anxious to about the 3rd level. Scared though? Nope. I’m excited, and can’t wait to have this adventure. Fear doesn’t control me, and I won’t live with any more regrets (still regret not doing one thing in Mexico, but c’est la vie). I kept my must-see list to a minimum this trip: the Camino, the “end of the world” in Fisterra, and then in Madrid, the National Archaeology Museum and the Temple of Debod. There is a lot more I would love to see in Spain, but that will have to wait until my next trip.

That’s it for this rambling mess of a post 🙂 I leave you with two quotes that speak volumes for/about me:

 

xox,
Jess

Life always throws curveballs

31 Mar

Thankfully this curveball was a good one. Nee, not good, great! I had given up on ever owning anything on my own, thanks to my inability to manage money and my credit in my 20s (live and learn), but the desire to have my own piece of this earth was always in the back of my mind. You know how it is, that little “well *maybe* I’ll be able to…..one day.”

Ladies and gentlemen, that one day finally came!

I now own my very own piece of Texas. It’s desert. It’s going to be offgrid. And I love it. Try and take it from me, and I will throat punch you.

It was 110% unexpected. I hadn’t been back to West Texas since my Geography field school at University, but I always did love it down there (and seriously, it continuously amazes me how vastly different regions of this state can be). I’m grateful to Moeder for finding the property listing, and to my parents for being willing to drive down there with me. Never underestimate the knowledge your parents have, even if they do frustrate you sometimes. (Love you both!!)

I want to drive straight back down there, put fencing up and start building the house, but a) come on Jess, you don’t really know how to do either of those things, and b) you’re now on a 5yr plan to move down there (or you have to win the lottery first), so patience padawan.

I’ll end this with my favourite photo I took at the ghost town down there. See y’all with the next post!

Adventure is calling my name…

6 Jan

2018 is the beginning of a new time for me. As I have been inching closer and closer to 40 each year, I would think about all the things I still want to do in my life, and add them to my bucket list. Well, what’s the point of making a list if you aren’t going to complete some/most/all of the items on it?? Time to start ticking those boxes and living life!

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 11

11 Apr

Favorite “Behind The Scene” Photo

 

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The Ninth Doctor, Christopher Eccleston, is my Doctor and I love seeing photos of happy times on the set. I wish he would’ve enjoyed the working environment enough to stay a few more seasons, but I’m happy with what I’ve got and these behind-the-scene gems are fantastic <3.
Have a great Friday y’all!
xox
jess

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 10

10 Apr

Favorite Pop Culture Reference within the show

 
I’m drawing a blank, so I’m just going to leave this right here 😉

dtstrek

 

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 9

9 Apr

Favorite Harry Potter/Doctor Who Actor

Mark Williams

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Mark-Williams-Arthur-WeasleyHARRY-POTTER-AND-THE-DEATHLY-HALLOWS-4

 

Really was a no brainer for me, but I love Mark Williams, so I may be biased 🙂

xox
jess

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 8

8 Apr

Favorite Director

 

 No brainer: Graeme Harper!!

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GraemeHarper

harper3

 

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 7

7 Apr

Favorite Children In Need Special

 

Time Crash: 2007

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xox
jess 

 

#TheFavoritesofDoctorWho April Photo Challenge – Day 6

6 Apr

Favorite Heartbreaking Scene

 

Rose haters turn to the right. Donna Noble lovers, turn left (and I’m so, so sorry!).
(This will be in vid form, so….yeah)
 
 
 
 
and let’s not forget this sub-plot:

s4_09_ps_01

 

xox
jess

 

p.s. Today’s challenge KILLED my emotions, thx 😛

 
 
 
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