Hey, this historic stroll is only 484-miles from France to Spain. I think I can do it in 30 days. However, without a dollar to my name… could I make it?

If you’re thinking, “I could never do that!” This story is for you! I am now 67, from the US retired and live in Thailand doing some volunteer work at an orphanage. Not too long ago I said, “You would have to be insane to take on a challenge like that.” How this “crazy thought” turned into a reality was when I was in bed here in Thailand and decided to watch a movie on Netflix, and a suggestion came up to watch the movie “The Way” with Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez. I awoke the next morning and said, “I can do that!” The decision was made. So I chose the date of June 1st 2013 to take my first step.


Oh, I know what you’re saying it’s too late to save this poor boy. If I do this, (and I think I will) it will be extremely difficult for me! The reason being I have a real problem asking someone for help. Like getting lost and stopping a gas station and asking someone “how can I get to….” I would rather ride around for an hour and try to find my destination on my own. Maybe it’s a “man” thing or is it an insult on my ego?



So I ask myself “Do I have the courage and strength to ask someone “Do you have any leftover food, I’m hungry? I don’t know!

For thousands of years, people have made this pilgrimage with no money. However, they made it! I still believe people are willing to help another when in need. The question is “That was then… this is now!” Have the people of the world changed these principles of life. This is the answer that I want to know!

I meet two girls last night from France. They did this with zero dollars in their pocket. They are the ones who gave me this idea. Even on my modest income from S.S. I have enough money to cover my expenses. However, do I have the courage to put my ego aside and ask a stranger if they have any food to spare? This would be my challenge! Could I humble myself enough to ask for help? I have a difficult time just asking someone to go to the store and pick up some bread for me, even when I give them the money. On the other hand, I never have any reservations to help another person in need!

I don’t know if I could do this option with no money? However, maybe I should…. And learn a new lesson about life, not sure what it would be?

When you think about it, people have been doing this walk for thousands of years. Without a penny to their name and they survived, years ago people believed in helping one another and expected nothing in return. My question is… would they do the same today? By me doing this, I may get the answer? Well, it’s something I’m considering.

“Why do this” is always the first question I am asked? I am not a religious person. However, do consider myself as spiritual. The only answer I can give is everyone starts out with distinct expiation of what the experience may bring. Nevertheless, everyone one has done the walk ends up with something different from what they expected. One thing everyone agrees on is his or her life was never the same after the walk. This is the mystery that intrigues me to do the walk.

Everyone is invited to join us on the way. Some people may decide to just do the last 100 miles; that’s OK. I will have a map where I plan on being every night. I plan to do this in 30 days that’s 16 miles a day. I think that works out to about six hours of walking per day. The whole idea is to have fun and keep our stress level at zero! Well maybe 10%. I bet that’s much lower than what it is today for most people?

Now for you people who are in rest homes, wheelchairs or just can’t make it, don’t worry! I’m still going to take you along with my daily report with photos as I’m walking via Facebook named “Jim’s Camino de Santiago.” Just click the link and make us one of your “close friends” to join this adventure. Remember this is a “WE” thing you are all a part of this journey.
 I watched a movie the other night, and they mentioned the old saying…”Life is all about the journey not the destination.” However, they added, “The journey is the destination.” I like that! Peace and stuff…JIM

A few blocks from where I live in Chiang Rai, I have joined the swim club to get into shape for my walk. It’s on the river and is a beautiful resort called “The Legend” I made it underwater from one end to the other and back another 10 feet! It is a beginning.


  1. faye52 says:

    Hi Jim, it’s Charlene here. I just got done reading your blog and if anyone could do this without money, YOU CAN! Once people meet you and and start talking to you they will give you anything you want. You are such an inspiration to so many, myself included, and I am praying for you everyday that your journey be the exactly what it supposed to be. I would love to join you and maybe that will happen, but right now just reading about it gives me a lot of inspiration. Thank you for being my friend and I am so glad that I walked into that room with John that day in Mexico and met you for the first time. My life has never been the same. Best to you, your friend Charlene

  2. rick baldwin says:

    You been watching them Monks in the saffrons robes too much.

  3. Rich says:

    Oh! What the hell I’ve been part of carazier thinks you have done so take lots of shoes along and go for it. Not much danger doing this. Gool Luck. Rich

    • Hay Richard, you got me started on all this stuff! You taught me to take a challenge or fear and grab it by the horns and do it. That was over 40 years ago, and I’m still doing it. You showed me the lesson is not the success or failure it’s the trying!

  4. Larry Ornett says:

    Jim, anyone that can in-case himself in an ice block for a good cause can ask someone for food. Good luck Larry Ornett

  5. Amy Flanery says:

    Hi Jim, I was hoping to talk to you about your plans for the Walk for a feature story … what’s the best way to do that from La Salle, IL?? Facebook chat?

    • Hi Amy, I heard it’s hot back home. It’s been beautiful here in Thailand. I will be back in L.P. for Christmas. I will send you some info on your email. I do have a U.S. La Salle phone number that you can call me on. It is a local call for you. Keep in mind I am 12 hours later than you; I’m in your future! It rings on my computer. A good time to call me is 10-11 am your time that’s 10-11 pm my time any day would be fine. 815-200-4004 Jim Will be emailing you more soon.

  6. Amy Flanery says:

    I should leave my contact info: ntonline@newstrib.com or Amy Flanery on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/amy.flanery.7?ref=tn_tnmn

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