Growing up in the flat plains of the Midwest, the theme of my dreams was traveling to warm and interesting places. I had no idea those dreams would lead me to the mountains of Panamá, or now, to the Camino de Santiago.
“Where do you think you will be in 5 years? 10 years?” While I understood that the question had more to do with a variety of goals, I dreaded that question because I instantly felt landlocked. Ray and I spent hours talking about living elsewhere, but without some exploration, I could not narrow down the specifics. It was easier for me to answer what I wouldn’t be doing in 5 years than what I would be doing.
It was Ray’s idea to visit Panamá for the first time in May 2013. He booked us on a Panama Relocation Tour, but I did not take him seriously about moving outside of the U.S. Before the tour ended, we fell in love with the country, the weather, and the idea of living in the eternal Spring of the mountains and less than 2-hours to gorgeous beaches.
It was my idea to walk the Camino. Our ex-pat friends are some of the most well-traveled, interesting people we’ve ever known. When Bill and Gina mentioned their Camino, they might as well have been speaking a foreign language. The idea of walking across Spain was instantly appealing to me. Ray did not take me seriously at all; partly because I have asthma and an old neck injury, but mainly because I’m not a hiker, I loathe sweating, and I’m very fond of electricity and indoor plumbing. I had to beg him a few times to train with me, and as he got excited, he began talking about our second Camino before we’d started our first.
Wendy: Wife, mother, child of God, retired teacher, bookkeeper, story-teller…adventurer
Ray: Husband, father, man of God, entrepreneur, constant doer, risk-taker…explorer