600km Walking Pilgrimage through Spain

Written by Denise Chng Lisan & published on September 2 2008

From the moment I discovered an ancient pilgrimage path in Spain in June last year, the attraction of walking hundreds of kilometres towards an assured destination grew on me daily. My eagerness to go on a month-long journey on foot across the steep slopes, lush valleys and forests of the Pyrenees, and through countless small towns and villages, was part of a subconscious quest to find depth and meaning in my life. At the age of 33, I was approaching – prematurely, perhaps – what seemed to be a mid-life crisis.

Straits Times Life! Article,Denise Chng Lisan,Camino de Santiago,Camino Frances

Letter from Quebec: Preserving Heritage

Written by Denise Chng Lisan & published on November 8 2008

'TRAVEL is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living,' wrote Miriam Beard. Life in Quebec is now my teacher, pointing out my knowledge gaps and honing my ideas of living - be it language, culture, life-skills, or the environment.

Denise Chng Lisan


Posted by Denise CHNG Lisan On Saturday, September 08, 2007
Preparing for this journey is a lesson in itself for me. I have to carry what I need on my back, and can't afford to have what I want. Deciding what is a need and what is a want is difficult. I could sit and think for days if I need that iPod, or that pair of pants. Every single item is a burden to carry and I must limit what I carry to less than 8kg, including water.

The most important thing is that I invested in a pair of Montrail hiking boots which I love, an excellent lightweight backpack and a pair of zippable pants. They are worthy investments as I will have to depend on them for the entire journey.

Here's what I'm carrying:
  • Sleeping bag
  • 3 pairs of pants; 3 shirts; 3 sets of undergarments
  • 2 pairs of thick socks
  • 2 pairs of light socks
  • 1 hat & 1 sarong
  • lightweight mini toiletries and towel
  • 1 pair of Birkenstocks for walking
  • first aid pouch
  • phone, camera & ipod (yes to store my gigs of pix!)
  • annoying chargers for phone, camera and ipod (which weigh a ton!)
  • 2 Guide books
  • Diary, pens and colors
  • mini torch, compass and lots of blister pads!

As I just came from a week of work conference in London, I am leaving my work suits and luggage at our Brand Finance office in Paris this weekend. So grateful we have an office in Paris.

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