A basic principle of the pilgrimage is that it begins wherever you leave home. I left home early this morning and drove to Virginia in order to be here with my children for the final arrangements for the Celebration of Life for Jean. I have with me a few items for the Jean Table that will sit empty but will have on it a few things that will remind many who attend of Jean.
Selecting the items was bittersweet and will be aimed at the audience we expect to see at Ft Belvoir on Sunday. She was very proud of her service as an Arlington Lady for the U.S. Army. I also will place at the table her award for being the Volunteer of the year at Ft Richardson, AK 1986 and a plaque for the parade of homes. She was known for her decoration skills and our 23 homes were often praised as beautifully decorated – something that was not easy when you are dealing with Army quarters. There will be many more items that will bring back memories and smiles to the faces of those who knew and loved her.
I will depart for Porto on 31 Aug and not arrive until late on the 1st of Sep after a long lay over in Geneva. I am hoping that it is restful as I will begin the walk from Porto early on 3 Sep. Packing for this trip was extremely complicated as I had to pack for the celebration of life, a week of waiting to fly to Porto, the backpack for the Camino, and pack a suitcase to go on the Adriatic cruise from Barcelona starting on 18 Sep. It took me the better part of a week to sort it all out and I am sure that I forgot something. Bottom line is I have plane tickets, a passport, and a credit card. Off I go.