Wild Pilgrim: My Walking Shoes And I Have History


My walking shoes and I. We have a lot of history…..

I travelled around the world 12 years ago and the plan was to begin by trekking the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal.

On the day we bought our walking shoes, I had my eye on a very sleek-looking yet flimsy pair and point-blank refused to c,onsider these shoes. I’d yet to embrace my wild side. I cared too much about how I would look.

My travel buddy and I got into a full on argument in the shop until he said “Sam, I will roll my eyes when you ram your 70 litre rucksack with crap you won’t even need. I’ll even bite my tongue when you start complaining that your rucksack is just too heavy. I’ll won’t even get annoyed when we have to spend a day arranging to send half of your stuff back. I will even overlook your straighteners if you are silly enough to bring them.

But if you think we are walking for 21 days, through a mountain range, over the highest pass in the world at 18,000 feet, in those flimsy shoes, then we are cancelling the trip right now” Steam was coming out of his ears!

So I relented and bought these shoes and it was the best travel decision I’ve ever made. I trekked through the Annapurna mountain range without a single blister while other trekkers had blisters the size of an egg yolk.

These shoes took me along the Great Wall of China, up mountains in India, New Zealand, France and Spain. I wore them for my first sky dive, I ran away from a tsunami wave on the Andaman Islands in them. I have more memories than I can remember! These shoes have taken me places my friends.  My walking shoes and I have history.

So when time came to get ready for the Camino de Santiago, I pulled out my old friends. They are a little battered and bruised. They have been through the washing machine a few time but they are still going strong. I trust no other shoes to get me through 300 miles of walking in 28 days.

My legs might ache, my shoulders might struggle under the weight of my rucksack, my face will no doubt burn and chaff in the hot spanish sun. I might have days when I feel I can’t mentally carry on. But my feet, my friends, my feet will be just fine….

(c) Samantha Wilson 2017.  All Rights Reserved.