My Emerald Ring


Spring in the Great Smoky Mountains

It is a busy week here in my neck of the woods.   The semester is winding up and Alexandra just has a couple of days at home before we leave on our big adventure.   Caroline has back-to-back tests in Mechanics and Thermodynamics. Spring is here so Hamilton has added “lawn-boy” back to his work description.  I’m on a round of luncheons and dinners with friends to celebrate my 50th birthday and the cosmos has added a solar eclipse into the mix.

For the last few years I thought it might be fun to get an emerald for my 50th birthday.  It wasn’t a big wish but a nice way to commemorate a special birthday and a new phase of my life.  I would look at emeralds on the internet and when I passed by jewelry store displays.    Sometime last year I completely forgot about it.   I’m not sure when the idea went to the bottom of my wish list but the last thing in the world on my list somehow made it to the top.   Now my emerald ring is a green backpack.  I didn’t plan this trek to Spain to coincide with a big birthday and solar eclipse that had to do with Alexandra’s school schedule but I’m sure it isn’t an accident.

So instead of showing you my ring I’m going to give you an equipment list for my forty days and forty nights on the Camino:

1 ultra-light backpack, 1 hostel sleeping bag

2 pairs hiking pants, 1 pair shorts

2 quick-dry tee shirts, 1 long sleeve shirt

1 rain suit, 1 fleece jacket

Underwear and silk long johns

3 pairs wool socks, 3 liner socks

Hiking shoes, hiking sandals

Mini-toiletries, first aid kit

1 guide book, 1 Spanish phrase book, 1 history guide book

Smartphone, iPod nano, Kindle

Sunglasses, reading glasses, hat

Bandanas, small towel

Spork, knife, pen, notepad

Passport, Camino Credentials

Yep,  that’s all I get, that’s all I can carry.   Add water and some snacks and that is about 17 pounds.  I’m sure it will feel like 50 at the end of the day.     So, the moral of the story this week is:   If you put your hand up and tell the Universe “take me”, you better prepare to change your wish list.



We want to come too.   We don’t weigh that much.




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