It’s a good place when all you have is hope and not expectations. Danny Boyle
As a cynic that strives to have hope, generally I tend to agree with Mr. Boyle. My expectations in life are very cynical but at the same time, it is difficult to be happy when there is an absence of hope. In regards to my upcoming Camino (nine more days!!), I’ve been keeping tabs on the Camino forum on issues such as trail conditions and weather – as such, while it makes me happy to have hope for sun, grass, and chirpy birds, I’m packing with the expectation of rain, mud, and cow poop.
Other things that currently are battling it out in my brain are:
Money: I hope to spend a maximum of 1200 euros (30 euros a day x 40 days; this covers food, lodgings, and miscellaneous things such as minor sightseeing activities). I expect to spend closer to 1500 euros. Knowing myself, stinky and snoring pilgrims will take its toll and as an introvert, there is no way I can survive hostel living for 40 days straight. Therefore, some nights will be spent blissfully alone in a casa rural or a hotel.
Trail conditions: I hope to have more than ¾ of the trail be dirt and/or grass. I expect that, due to the joys of modernization, there will be more pavement than I’d like. But I guess pavement is much better than the expected mud and swimming pool sized puddles.
Weather: Sun! Please? After the crappy winter we’ve had, I hope to see lots of sun. But considering the time of year that I’m going, I am expecting lots of rain and even possible snow. I just hope that if that expectation comes through, I get some lovely foggy photos. I like fog….just not when I’m on a mountain…
Scenery: I hope to see lots of ancient architecture, beautiful landscapes, flowers, photogenic people and animals silhouetted against the skies. Actually, here is where my hopes and expectations are actually married. Though the photogenic people and animals will sing and poop on the trail so I’ll have to watch out for that.
Sanity: I’m not exactly sure what to hope for or to expect regarding this one. I’ve read the life-changing stories and I’ve read the horror stories. So this can really go either way. I am just begging the universe to not send any singing pilgrims my way and to keep the chainsaw snorers to a minimum.
Random: I hope and expect that the people watching will be fun, that I will make one friend, the photo opportunities will be fantastic and my camera will do justice to what I see, and that I’ll get fit despite my dodgy knee. I also hope that I stay safe and that I won’t come back home a statistic (from being flashed by someone…seriously – apparently it happens).