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Challenges or dreams?

November 14, 2008

I have been squeezing my brain for a week in order to find a challenge or challenges I could talk about. I don’t really know if they are true challenges or they are just dreams I want to come true. A challenge implies a difficulty to achieve it and difficulty depends on each person. I am pretty sure that these dreams require an effort, consequently I have classed them as challenges.

The first challenge to face that I have in mind is to cycle The Way of St. James from Saint Jean Pied de Port on the French side of the Pyrenees to Santiago de Compostela next June. As most of you know, it is a pilgrimage route about 800 km usually done for religious or spiritual reasons. However that is not my case, I only want to do it for fun, for cultural motivation and to test if I am capable of cycling during 10 or 12 days despite my not having practised cycling in my whole life. In fact, I have already begun to prepare for it and I have just taken the first step: I have bought a bicycle.

The second challenge, and the most difficult one to achieve for me, is to spend some time abroad. I have always regretted not going abroad while I was studying and now it keeps being a burning ambition. Actually, I don’t mind where to go, but probably I would choose an English speaking country so I could kill to birds with one stone. My idea is to ask for an unpaid leave at work, between half a year and one year, move abroad, try to find a job, related with my knowledge (computers) or not, and of course take this opportunity to travel around. I have not set a deadline yet, but I would like not to wait too much for rising to this challenge.

Now that this essay is ending I have just realized that I can find a difference between challenges and dreams. A dream is something you wish whereas a challenge can be something you wish to face or not, for instance, to face a critical illness could be a daunting challenge. In conclusion, I am going to relabel my challenges as dreams.

Jose Luis Betí

PS: I couldn’t write the post yesterday because my kind neighbour, who is unaware of sharing his internet connection, might have switch off the wireless router. It could be a good challenge to crack protected wireless networks. I’ll think about it.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. janea08 permalink
    November 20, 2008 1:13 am

    I have never done “El Camino”, but people use to say that it is a lovely experience. If you finally make your dreams come true, you will write a post in EOI English Advance from somewhere abroad next year. I am pretty sure that most of us will be checking the blog time to time.

  2. jejim permalink
    November 20, 2008 3:59 pm

    Last summer I walked over the St James’ Way. In the morning, we took a taxi from Santiago and went to the Monte do Gozo. From there we walked patiently the 4 km that separated us from the city: we stopped many times;
    we had coffee while one of us was having his hair cut; we had “vermut”; we had lunch; we had a little nap, and then, in the evening, we finished our journey. It was very funny, but I envied people who were walking properly the way: although they looked tired, they also looked as if they had picked up a lot of good —and not so good— experiences along the road.

    By the way, did you know there is a St James’ route that departs from València? In fact, València’s harbour was an important center for medieval pilgrimage: there were pilgrims who departed from here to Rome and to Jerusalem, and pilgrims from the Mediterranean countries who set off to Santiago.

  3. Jose Luis permalink
    November 20, 2008 8:02 pm

    Yes, I knew there is a route that departs from Valencia, in fact the first stage goes from Valencia till Algemesí, where the main church is called “Sant Jaume” that is “Saint James” and you can ask for spending the night in a kind of pilgrim hostel. More information about the east way to Santiago:

  4. almanusa permalink
    November 23, 2008 8:29 pm

    You have two very interesting challenges. My brother did de St. James Way last summer, but he only walked a hundred kilometres. He started walking from Ocebreiro, and he only took five days walking, more or less twenty kilometres every day. Your other challenge is mine, as well. I always have wanted to live in an English country, mainly to improve my English, because I think this is more important for many reassons, but I couldn´t for different reassons. So, I try to travel when I have some days and …… money, nowadays our main problem, I think. Last summer, I was in Croacia, a very interesting country to visit, and it is a cheap travel. I recommend you to visit it. If you want, here you have a web about Croacia:

  5. teresalcai permalink
    November 25, 2008 11:04 am

    Concerning “El camino de Santiago”, I did it last summer with some of my friends. I also tried to do it by bicycle but I was uncapable. I couldn`t finish it because of I did not have enough time. But, a lot of people suggest me trying again. They say that it is a thilling experience.
    Neither I did it due to religious reason, I did it because it is an interesting and cultural esperience. In addition, it is “next our house”. It is a fun way to konw more about our culture.

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