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CF surprises?

Ahhhs

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago, May 2015
Porto to Santiago, April 2016
Muxia-Finisterre-Santiago, April 2016
Camino Del Norte, April 2017
I stopped at a small, trailside bar for yet another cafe con leche and the use of their servicios. As I was preparing to leave the owner rushed out explaining something in Spanish that I didn't quite get. Turns out she wanted us to wait until the fresh, warm, churros were finished cooking so she could give us all some. That was a surprise. ;)
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
How challenging (but wonderful) it can be to walk day after day;
How it is very much a meditative practice, what has come from that, and how deep it goes;
How much resonance there is with this particular pilgrimage, and with its history.
And how the 'camino feeling' can pop up from time to time, no matter where I go.

I was only going to walk once.
How quickly that idea fell away once I had walked once.
 

J.Patrick

Member
Camino(s) past & future
From Porto, Portugal, through Tui, Spain, in 2015.
Northern route in August/September 2017
After paring life down to the essentials on the Camino, and finding how deeply satisfied I was with so little, I was completely surprised by the gratitude I came home with for the joyous excess of my life. I've floated on that gratitude for 2 years now...reveling in the overwhelming excess of home, co-workers, parishioners, the beauty of where I live...I've really been overwhelmed.
 

HeidiL

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2004-), Portugués, Madrid, 4/5 Plata, 1/8 Levante, 1/8 Lana, Augusta, hospitalera Grado.
How much the world changes on the Camino. I still sometimes take a break at work and consider this:

There are only two important things in the world - putting one foot in front of the other (metaphorically or not) - and what's for lunch?
 

Ahhhs

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago, May 2015
Porto to Santiago, April 2016
Muxia-Finisterre-Santiago, April 2016
Camino Del Norte, April 2017
There was the MUD on the Portuguese last year ...
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013 Camino Frances SJPP / 2014 Camino Portugues / 2015 Camino Ingles / 2015 Hospitalero Training
2016 (fall) Camino Sanabre / Hospitalero?
There are no standards, only surprises...... Ultreya...... Willy/Utah/USA
 
Camino(s) past & future
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
This was a nasty surprise: getting a bill from the health clincs. I knew hospitalization would cost but I thought walk-in clinics were free. They are not. That isn't the nasty part, the bills were reasonable, but being able to pay them was nasty. Fairly easy to pay if you live in the EU but US banking regulations and bank costs make it difficult and expensive. They don't accept credit cards. To avoid this problem be sure to pay them in cash before leaving the clinic. You probably won't need more than 100 or 150 euros.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
This was a nasty surprise: getting a bill from the health clincs. I knew hospitalization would cost but I though walk-in clinics were free. They are not. That isn't the nasty part, the bills were reasonable, but being able to pay them was nasty. Fairly easy to pay if you live in the EU but US banking regulations and bank costs make it difficult and expensive. They don't accept credit cards. To avoid this problem be sure to pay them in cash before leaving the clinic. You probably won't need more than 100 or 150 euros.
Thanks. That's good to know!
 

cher99840

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
There were many nice surprises that don't have to be prepared for. The only unpleasant surprise that I remember was how vastly more difficult walking day after day after day was. It not only took a toll on feet and body, but stamina as well. I had the impression that I could start slow and build up, but I started slow, seemed to tear down for about 10 days and THEN began to build up. That was my experience and it might not happen that way for other people.
 

Charlotte Helbig

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés Sept. 2017
Camino Portugués May-June 2019
I stopped at a small, trailside bar for yet another cafe con leche and the use of their servicios. As I was preparing to leave the owner rushed out explaining something in Spanish that I didn't quite get. Turns out she wanted us to wait until the fresh, warm, churros were finished cooking so she could give us all some. That was a surprise. ;)
Fresh churros!! Where was that? Will have to make sure to stop.
 

Davey Boyd

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Again, soon as possible!
Running out of water a few times on the route from Geneva because where the guide book said there was water there was not, until I finally found out all French cemeteries have a fresh water tap!

Biggest surprise I could not plan for was when I was walking back from Santiago to France last Winter. I was in the middle of nowhere and there was nobody about. Soon a pilgrim came towards me in the distance, plodding on to Santiago. As we were about to pass I was just about to say Buen Camino and stopped dead in my tracks, so did he. It was an old friend I haven't seen in 20 years!
 

BonitaHolland

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Starting 3rd Sep 2016
I was surprised that my feet swelled and stayed that way.... my tried and tested Boots became tight and uncomfortable after weeks of walking. I now know that I needed boots at least a size bigger if not more. My next walk will involve my 'I'm going for a very long walk' boots rather than the boots I use on weekends. There's at least 1.5 sizes difference.
 

Mike Savage

So many friends to meet . . . so little time
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés,Inglés
Muxia/Finisterre
Português Coastal
Português Central
Sanabrés
In the Basque country of Navarra greeting the locals in Spanish didn't get the expected result. I should have learned some phrases in Euskara.

I learned a few greetings and responses in Basque and had many wonderful experiences because of it. I highly recommend learning and using a few common greetings. Absolutely wonderful people.
 

ShaLaw

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Sept./Oct. 2015. Future Camino Portuguese in 2022.
I was always surprised by, and have a new-found respect for, my feet and body, at how one nights' rest is all that's needed to refresh and replenish you enough to keep you going the next day, no matter how weary you were the night before (obviously, injuries excluded!)
 
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Mike Savage

So many friends to meet . . . so little time
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés,Inglés
Muxia/Finisterre
Português Coastal
Português Central
Sanabrés
Wow! That scenery would surprise me too. Well done.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances: September - October 2016
Porto > Santiago - April 2018
Move to Astorga (2019)
I encourage you not to be anxious about your surprises. They are waiting for you, they will bring tears, smiles, laughing out loud, hugging everyone in arms reach or deciding to walk alone for a day. In my experience each one taught me a life lesson or two including the meaning of love, joy and how many steps I can walk with energy left to enjoy the evening. Each day's surprises gave me something to meditate on the following day. I've been home 4 months and one came to mind just an hour ago while I was in the supermarket.
Of course, that is me. You might have even more enjoyment on your walk down the Way.
Buen Camino!
 

FLEUR

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2012 - 2016
Voie de Paris / Tours Aulnay to Saintes 2017
Camino del Baztan 2018
is it oil seed rape?
 

ShaLaw

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Sept./Oct. 2015. Future Camino Portuguese in 2022.
One day my fiancé and I actually ran out of money! As ridiculous as that sounds, we thought we could get by until we reached our next village but alas, there was no bank machine there. We had enough for our beds and a meal but that was it! Nothing to buy breakfast the next day. The next morning, luckily, we found out that the other albergue in town took credit cards, so since it was in Galicia and we were going to buy ponchos eventually anyway, we bought them there, along with our breakfast. It's funny, though, how small your world becomes when you are walking. In retrospect, we could have easily taken a 5-10 minute cab ride back to the last ATM but we didn't even think to do that. So....after that, I always had an 'emergency' 100 euros tucked away in my card wallet, so it wouldn't happen again.

Buen Camino!
 
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mspath

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Good idea to have emergency funds tucked away.

Whatever your budget and whichever card(s) you carry always have a stash of emergency cash. It need not be much say 4 × 20 and 2 × 5 euro notes. This stash might be very useful when an intense storm knocks all power out and no ATM works or during a long holiday weekend when the machines are 'milked dry'.

As always it helps to be prepared.
Also keep some euro bills in small denominations; breaking a 50 euro bill in a remote village can be impossible! However, gas stations will often make change even if you don't buy gas!
 
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Gail Larson

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spring 2017
I have rarely used an ATM. Don't they charge you for each withdrawal? Can you just carry a wad of euros for the whole time and use a Visa card when possible?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
I have rarely used an ATM. Don't they charge you for each withdrawal? Can you just carry a wad of euros for the whole time and use a Visa card when possible?
Sure. Carry a thousand euros with you and use the credit card when you can. Practice at home. Carry a thousand in cash with you for a month and only use an American Express credit card. ;)

Edit: Sorry. Let me be more helpful. The camino runs mostly on cash. Most establishments will not accept credit cards. For more help on ATMs use this link to a search I've done on this forum: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/search/5884884/?q=ATM&o=date&c[node]=12
 
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C

Camino Chris

Guest
And how the 'camino feeling' can pop up from time to time, no matter where I go.
I was only going to walk once.
How quickly that idea fell away once I had walked once.
So true, for me, too, and almost everyone on this forum!
 

Gail Larson

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spring 2017
Sure. Carry a thousand euros with you and use the credit card when you can. Practice at home. Carry a thousand in cash with you for a month and only use an American Express credit card. ;)

Edit: Sorry. Let me be more helpful. The camino runs mostly on cash. Most establishments will not accept credit cards. For more help on ATMs use this link to a search I've done on this forum: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/search/5884884/?q=ATM&o=date&c[node]=12
I couldn't reach this link My bank said its a Ten dollar fee every time I use my card in an ATM. That's kind of expensive. Whenever I travel in Europe I Always carry cash. Maybe I am too trusting.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I couldn't reach this link My bank said its a Ten dollar fee every time I use my card in an ATM. That's kind of expensive. Whenever I travel in Europe I Always carry cash. Maybe I am too trusting.
Sounds like you need a new bank!
I don't know where you live, but I'm in the US and I have an account with Charles Schwab that I use for traveling that refunds me all ATM fees.
 

Gail Larson

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spring 2017
Well they've been pretty good to us the last 40 years. We are in a small town in North east Washington. But I will certainly look into another option for the Camino. We do have a Charles Schwab account too. That's a good idea.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Various since 1478
is it oil seed rape?
It is rapeseed and I think it is used for fuel.
I was told it was rapeseed/canola, used for making canola oil. Hmmm.

It is a field of Rapeseed flowers, cultivated for around the last 4,000 years in India, the last 2,000 years in China and Japan and used as fuel in lamps among other things since, in Europe for at least the last 900 years. Widely used as a lubricant in steam engines, the steam age in general and more recently used in the production of Biodiesel.

Canada developed 'Canola' in the 70's as a more edible less bitter tasting version, the use of the name spread and is now the preferred name in the the US/Australia for the oil and the plant/flower, presumably because people were more comfortable with Canola than Rapeseed, which comes from the Latin Rapum meaning 'turnip'.
 

grayland

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Yes
Well they've been pretty good to us the last 40 years. We are in a small town in North east Washington. But I will certainly look into another option for the Camino. We do have a Charles Schwab account too. That's a good idea.

If you have a Schwab account now it is very easy to open a banking as well.
No fees and they refund any fee charged by the dispensing bank.

I have had an account for several years and it is never a concern or problem of any kind.
Carry large sums of cash on the Camino is a very bad idea.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017-18)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
What, if any, Camino surprises have you experienced that you could have prepared for?
I live at approximately the same latitude as Miami, Florida. The Camino is much closer to the latitude of Boston, Massachusetts. (We call places like that "snowdigger country.") We didn't realize that, and in 2014 we were prepared for the kinds of "spring" weather we get in southern Texas. So my takeaway lesson is, be aware of the latitude and the usual seasonality in comparison to where you normally live. (Thank God for Caminoteca in Pamplona, where I got a warm and much loved pink fleece pullover. It was much needed, too.)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017-18)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
How challenging (but wonderful) it can be to walk day after day;
How it is very much a meditative practice, what has come from that, and how deep it goes;
How much resonance there is with this particular pilgrimage, and with its history.
And how the 'camino feeling' can pop up from time to time, no matter where I go.

I was only going to walk once.
How quickly that idea fell away once I had walked once.
Oh, yes.
 

Lilja

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
August 29th - October 1st 2016
For me it was running out of cash a couple of times and the next ATM being maybe some 2 stages away. They're not big on credit cards on the way (I actually never used my credit card at all). So I'd say take care to check out on your app or in a guide book where the next ATM is going to be and prepare to always have enough cash on you. Thankfully I made some loyal friends along the way who were better at preparing than I was and bailed me out :D
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2017), Primitivo (2019)
I don't like to prepare for surprises, because, well, I like being surprised!! :)
I like your attitude. A little serendipity is good for the soul! Here is something I am wondering- with all the recent rain and warm weather, it is hard to imagine the route napoleon not being open on April 6 (my start day). But, this is my first time.... Sooo looking forward to my journey
 

AbbyDee

Court Jester
Camino(s) past & future
In celebration of the 35th anniversary of my 25th year, I will begin my Camino in September 2017
It is rapeseed and I think it is used for fuel.

Just an added note, in these politically correct times (at least in Canada) the term "rapeseed" seems to have fallen out of fashion in favour of the term "canola". It is an oil seed with both culinary and industrial uses.
 

AbbyDee

Court Jester
Camino(s) past & future
In celebration of the 35th anniversary of my 25th year, I will begin my Camino in September 2017
I couldn't reach this link My bank said its a Ten dollar fee every time I use my card in an ATM. That's kind of expensive. Whenever I travel in Europe I Always carry cash. Maybe I am too trusting.

Egad, are those standard banking fees where you live? If not, I'd be looking for a better deal.
 

nycwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Ourense to Santiago (2019), CF: (2014, 2004, 2002, 2001). On to Fisterra, (2002, 4, 14).
I caught a cold in Roncesvalles, 2001. It was August and my first camino. I'd read about the heat and heat and dressed accordingly. I didn't think about altitude so, I froze that first night; cold lasted until westward side of Castrojeriz. I felt a wee sorry for other peregrinos who had to hear my incessant coughing until I feel asleep.
 

JulieandPeter

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances Spring 2015
Frances Fall 2017
Le Puy to SJPDP Fall 2018
Frances Fall2019
Frances Summer 2020
oz.JPG
Just an added note, in these politically correct times (at least in Canada) the term "rapeseed" seems to have fallen out of fashion in favour of the term "canola". It is an oil seed with both culinary and industrial uses.
A couple of more photos of these beautiful flowers along the Camino.IMG_8718.JPG
 

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