The weather forecast was simply disastrous when we set out for the last route of the Walk in Saint–Jean–aux-Bois on the hiking trail GR12. And indeed the pouring rain in the afternoon urged us to call the rescue teams. Christel and her husband Jan had their van parked nearby and Jo, the husband of Katlijn who walked with me, was stand by with their mobile home. The second day started with some light rain but then sky cleared and we didn’t have a drop of rain for the rest of the 4 following days. Meanwhile worried messages came in from Holland and Belgium: it rained so much they were virtually flooded. The weather plays an important role in such an undertaking as walking the year round. It’s easy to imagine the difference between walking in the early autumn woods that are illuminated with golden sunrays instead of bucketing rain.
Nico Beentjes in his own personal style showed up somewhere on our way. On Saturday a few homeopaths from Belgium arrived and in the evening another eight from Holland. Christel handed flags with the logo to everyone and took care for all arrangements. Thanks to her seamless organization of catering and hotel bookings the whole trip was pleasant and carefree for all.
When we looked at the map, It was a surprise to be so close to the capital and still walk along fields, narrow paths alongside allotments and in and out the woods. Helen Cockbill and her friend Joy arrived on day three from the UK. It was great to see Helen whom I met in Tanzania where we were both working in Jeremy Sherr’s project: we had a wonderful time there but haven’t seen each other since. Next day the group increased again with two cars full of Belgian delegates.
It was striking how all the participants got into a mood of enthusiasm and connection, a phenomenon I’ve mentioned before during the Walk. Walking seemed to be easy for most, even if the distances and hours turned out to have been estimated too optimisitcally. And as it wasn’t easy in the suburbs of Paris to find good meeting places, get through the traffic with the van, find a decent place to eat, it was
after midnight before Jan and Christel got everybody safe and well to their hotel.
The morning of the 15th I opened my hotel window at the 7th floor and looked over Paris waking up under a pinkish sky. I took a deep breath and thanked for this year of walking, healing and linking. Full of gratitude I looked back on a year without any problem or setback. The gods, the angels and the guides al walked along and rejoiced with every symbolic footstep I made on this mission.
The time had come to end the Walk. With the last participants who were waited for in the metro station La Vilette we walked through Paris, making a stop at the Notre Dame and at Hahnemann’s house and then heading for the cemetery Père Lachaise. There my beloved Paul was waiting for me: he came all the way to be present at the celebration and to take me home with him afterwards. (and keep me there for a while).
Being a homeopath one can’t be but in awe at the tomb and the statue of our founding father. Hahnemann spent the last years of his life in Paris where he had a popular practice, which his wife Melanie continued after he died. She was the first professional (female) lay homeopath and a very successful one.
Most homeopaths nowadays are women: we should consider proclaiming her our example and model.
With a little speech I officially declared the Walk for Homeopathy closed then and there and offered the flag to Hahnemann: with seven tight knots I hung it around his head. A representative of each country (Wim Serneels for Belgium, Helen for the UK, Ronit Aboutboul for Israel, Lous Wijnkoop for the Netherlands) spoke a wish for homeopathy, and then we put the eternal flame (brought all the way from Alonissos) and flowers on the tomb. Stephen Gordon surprised everybody with his swinging song “Sam, the Man”, (fantastic lyrics too): all videoed and soon on Youtube!
And as this day was not only meant to close and end but at the same time welcome the new we all had a glass of champagne to celebrate my birthday. The ceremony continued in the nearby hall with the name ‘The Next Step’ (talking of synchronicity!). First we watched the video ‘The best of The Walk’ (https://www.facebook.com/WalkForHomeopathy?hc_location=timeline); then we showed the check with the donations for Laurel Chiten’s movie ‘Just One Drop’. This 1750 euro brings the total amount of all the money given to charities on 9650 euro and we keep the donations on the blog open until the end of the month, hoping to reach 10.000 euro.
To symbolize the new a little bag of calendula seeds from my garden was handed to all participants and it came with a story. When I was in Israel last month of May staying at Mihal Yakir’s place we were having a good time making wild plans. One of them is to give joint seminars because we feel we complement each other and can together already express the 7th column in our teachings. At a certain moment Mihal thought I should learn how to talk with trees. Once at home and not quite knowing how to start, I presumed talking to flowers would do as well. My whole garden is spotted with Calendula: they escaped from the flower beds and are now between the herbs and vegetables and in every corner. So I sat down and told the Calendula: ‘the audience is listening’. And this is what they said: The sunny, colorful, abundant Calendula, in Dutch named ‘gold flower’, has the vitality of a child. It restores all tissues, revitalizes, rejuvenates, rejoices. It’s like a spring cleaning after which all looks brighter, fresher and shinier. You can’t miss it is tea, in the bath, as a cream, or a tincture. The bland taste and smell doesn’t impose themselves but adapt to all because it suits all. It heals physical and psychological pain; where ever there is a wound, where it burns, scalds, cuts, stings, sticks, wherever one is damaged, hit, bitten, violated, torn or hurt in any other way; It takes care, sooths and regenerates. It is the universal healer.
Waaw, I thought, that’s not bad for a start! If all plants will talk to me like this!
It thus seemed a good idea to give everybody some seeds, because seeds are the symbol of hope and new beginning. Nowadays collecting your own seeds even became a subversive act of agri-activism. We all have to collect, protect and interchange our own seeds if we are to survive and keep our freedom on planet earth. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, here’s a good start : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3d9k23UyQQ .
So, I hope that everybody will sow the calendula seeds in gardens, between stones, in pots and fallow land, in city and in villages. It will grow and shine everywhere.
For the ‘next step’ in homeopathy: keep following the blog. We’ll keep you posted in the coming weeks.
We closed the Walk with the following idea: “If reality is not made of little parts but of stories and all the participants became part of the Walk then the ‘Walk for Homeopathy’ has become part of reality.