On the road to Calzadilla de la Cueza, in the middle of a very warm day, I met Bastien from Setes and Quentin from Montpellier, two French guys who were making a documentary about the Camino : "Retour sur le Chemin de vos Rêves".
Their question to the pilgrims was very simple: "What is your message to the world?"
Well, it's a nice challenge to answer an interview in the middle of the Meseta, and I did my best to answer without any preparation.
Hello, I'm Sylvie from Belgium.
As you can see with this sign that I am holding, I am offering free hugs on the Camino.
I started my way on July 4 in Santiago and, for three weeks, I have met and hugged a large number of pilgrims from all over the world.
But why are you doing this?
After arriving in Santiago last summer, it was clear to me that I would not walk to Santiago anymore.
During the winter, the word "Peace" came to me many many times. I am lucky to speak five different languages and I love the Camino Frances.
So, in early-June, I decided to start a peace march on the Camino, walking back in order to meet as many pilgrims as possible.
"Free hugs" are well-known in Anglo-Saxon countries. It is easier for me to propose a free hug rather than giving peace of Christ to everyone. But in fact, it is exactly the same thing.
Do you have a message for the people who will watch this documentary?
Yes, of course! My message is simple: hug each other! Show tenderness to your family, your friends, but also to the people you meet. We are all brothers and sisters on this earth. And many people, even among the pilgrims on the Camino, need true love signs and tenderness.