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Disgruntled Pilgrims

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Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#1
I love this forum. We share and give, can savour the memories, read or see photographs of things we may have missed on our Camino. I read an article by a disgruntled pilgrim, which received some mixed reviews and responses. From my experience, any Camino can bring out the best and worst in me :):mad:, but the chance to learn and grow comes from both. If you find someone has major issues, is having difficulties, or perhaps you have them, during the adventure or upon arrival in Santiago, don't forget that you or they have the chance to share their experience in a group or alone in the Chapel for Prayer and Reflection, where we receive our Credentials. I, and I know others, have benefitted from being able to talk to others in confidence with objective and sympathetic listeners. If you are projecting frustration or even anger, sadness or despair, at the end of your Camino, it could be the symptom of something much deeper that has been awoken or stirred by your Pilgrimage. Its what its all about ;) Love, Light & Nature, Keith.
 

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Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#2
There is a terrible temptation to let off steam immediately and publicly when angry or frustrated - perhaps in the hope of finding support and justification from others who have had a similar experience. I know that I have done so in the past. I also know that I have regretted it very soon afterwards when in a better frame of mind and more able to understand the situation I was in.
 

Purky

The Dutch guy
Camino(s) past & future
Breathe properly.
Stay curious.
And walk a camino.
#3
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
 

always me

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese(2018)
#4
Walking from Porto to Santiago was extraordinary! Silence is always so beautiful. And meeting other pilgrims was a joy!
I waited for the compostela for 2hours in line, and that was so good, because there was sharing, meeting, laughing,and a sense of togetherness.

I will return to walk the CF....no doubt❤️
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#5
@Purky, very well said!
And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
Or that you have a bit more work to do. ;)
We change slowly, most of us, so it is only the rare and fortunate few who get through things in one camino.
The places where we are most disgruntled are the places where there is simply more waking up to do.
It takes time and patience. And since our culture gets less and less good at patience, we get less and less good at that too.
 

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falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#6
being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met
The number one killer of a "fun" pilgrimage! One of the hardest things to do is to walk/cycle without expectations. However, they make dealing with emotions much harder. When my walk begins to become a grind, I remind myself, Bill Bryson style, that the activity is optional. I can quit any time I want.

So far, I have not!;)
 

tillyjones

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2015
VDLP May 2017
del Norte Sept 2018
#8
Perhaps I dont know the meaning of disgruntled. I was going to say it's the human experience to get disgruntled and just part of the ride.

For example, I know me, and I will get disgruntled when people are noisy, if I haven't been able to enjoy the personal space I need, when my feet hurt, when I'm lost, etc. Trying my best to be prepared and to thwart these things is the challenge but when they do happen try to go with the flow or rectify then as best as able.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#9
@Purky, very well said!

Or that you have a bit more work to do. ;)
We change slowly, most of us, so it is only the rare and fortunate few who get through things in one camino.
The places where we are most disgruntled are the places where there is simply more waking up to do.
It takes time and patience. And since our culture gets less and less good at patience, we get less and less good at that too.
My thoughts exactly. One Camino is likely not to be enough, is only the start. thank you.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#10
being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage
I agree with the main point of your reply. However, imperfect people do get disgruntled. The process of trying to overcome disgruntlement, and reduce its frequency, does have a place on a pilgrimage.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#11
I agree with the main point of your reply. However, imperfect people do get disgruntled. The process of trying to overcome disgruntlement, and reduce its frequency, does have a place on a pilgrimage.
What comes first - to 'overcome' or 'understand' the cause? I've found that understanding the root cause of any problem - anger, discomfort, depression, or such like then leads to being able to acknowledge it and deal with it and then overcoming it through that awareness. My Caminos and visits to the Chapel for quiet and private talks helped me enormously - and it took more than one Camino for me to realise what and how I have to deal with my distructive emotions.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013-Frances SJP-Finisterre, 2015 Camino Le Puy-Santiago, 2017 Portugues Lisbon-Santiago 2018 Norte
#12
@Purky, very well said!

Or that you have a bit more work to do. ;)
We change slowly, most of us, so it is only the rare and fortunate few who get through things in one camino.
The places where we are most disgruntled are the places where there is simply more waking up to do.
It takes time and patience. And since our culture gets less and less good at patience, we get less and less good at that too.
Man are you right!! I am preparing for Camino 4 .
After more tha 3,500K of walking all around France, Portugal and Spain I know I will never really “get it or get me together” but maybe just maybe I will be able to carry the peace, love and remembrance of how incredible many people are. If you just listen and connect, for a little longer than I did on the Camino before. You are so right change is sooo hard. But as we say the Camino starts when you get home. I am just trying to make the home Camino last a little longer every time!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#13
What comes first - to 'overcome' or 'understand' the cause?
IME, it is seeing something clearly and understanding the does the overcoming. Once I can see things as they really are, the overcoming happens by itself.
it's the human experience to get disgruntled and just part of the ride.
Yes. And yet it's not an inevitable part of experience. If there is a tendency or habit of being disgruntled, then that can be purified and replaced by its opposite. Contentment is the best thing in the world, and a lot happier place to live from.
imperfect people do get disgruntled. The process of trying to overcome disgruntlement, and reduce its frequency, does have a place on a pilgrimage.
I would say it's almost the whole point, at least for me. I so appreciate caminos for bringing deeper tendencies into the open - the deeply hidden destructive emotions. It's very good at that. And being grumpy is always a road sign that says "Hey, look over here! There's something deeper cooking." And then I see something that is blocking simple contentment - usually it has to do with mememe. I can be astonishingly good at whining.;)

Edit (we must have posted at the same time @It56ny):
I am just trying to make the home Camino last a little longer every time!
Brilliant. I love it. Now that is an inspiration!
 
Camino(s) past & future
March 2018
#14
I came away from my Camino with the idea that I wanted to embrace the carrying of my “burden” and refused to put my backpack down until I got my compostella, which meant wearing it - happily - in line for hours.

That being said It serves to purpose to censor the feelings or experiences of others. False positivity doesn’t lead to anything honest or valuable.

Some of my most negative thoughts of others took place on the Camino and my friends - with whom I shared honest moments - confessed to the same. No one magically changes just because they got to the end and I’ll play devils advocate and say that if you think “the end” is the main thing, you’re also not getting it because the Camino teachies nothing of not that life’s about the journey, and the end is just one moment along a much larger process.
 

Johnlewis47

West of England Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances in 2019 is my plan. I’ve had a tough 4 years with personal issues & need guidance
#15
Perhaps I dont know the meaning of disgruntled. I was going to say it's the human experience to get disgruntled and just part of the ride.

For example, I know me, and I will get disgruntled when people are noisy, if I haven't been able to enjoy the personal space I need, when my feet hurt, when I'm lost, etc. Trying my best to be prepared and to thwart these things is the challenge but when they do happen try to go with the flow or rectify then as best as able.
Think I’m with @tillyjones on this one, disgruntlement is part of the challenge, helping us understand that perfection isn’t permanent, nothing is, and the more we strive for perfection, the more of a distopia with live in the more dissatisfied/disgruntled we become. I have learnt the meaning of this the hard way as some of you may have read in other posts, however this by no means, means that I have personally overcome this challenge. I still struggle to accept that perfection is the dark side, leads to anger and disgruntlement it does. Patience and acceptance is the serenity to overcoming the things that are imperfect and out of my control.

Wish I could practice what I preach, still believe in this I do
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 will be Camino #14.
#16
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility). And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
I normally don’t do this but I disagree with you on most points here.
First of all, I know of no rule book that says a pilgrimage should be painful.
Second, being disgruntled can be part of a process that may help you learn something about yourself, and I consider that to be a successful pilgrimage.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#17
My original post was with regards to disgruntled pilgrims and a post I read. Its been a pleasure and an inspiration reading through all of your replies. Thank you. It occures to me that we shouldn't lose sight of all of the good emotions and actions that we experience and inspire along the Way - some of which may surprise us, that we have that something special inside us to give and share - I've often lost sight of that, too. It really is a ying-yang thing, the ups-and-downs on Camino, emotionally, physically and spiritually. I am grateful for the good people I have met, how they helped me in many ways, perhaps even without realising it themselves. My faith in humanity and myself has often been rekindled by fellow pilgrims or the actions of those who help us along the Way. I've leaned as much from the good as the bad. Most difficult of all is one of the things the big man himself says - not to judge others, a virtue I have to work especially hard on.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF-Fisterre-Muxia March 2017
Slovakia Camino Kosiče-Levoča Oct 2017
El Norte March 1 2018
#18
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
Thank you. Serenity is inversely proportional to expectations.
 
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago de Compestela in May(2016)
#19
i think we all know who we are talking about. I would like to make two observations. In the UK we have a Monopolies Commission. But why is there only one?
How many times have I seen that sign that beseeches the Lord to give me patience. “and I want it NOW!”
 
Camino(s) past & future
Del Norte from Irun to Santander, Primitivo from Oviedo to Frances to Santiago September 2016
#20
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
A bit preachy
 
Camino(s) past & future
I plan on walking the Camino April 2018.
#21
One of my objectives in walking the CF was to stop or minimise judging others. However, it is a lot more difficult than I expected and I found a lot of people were judging me. Walking the Camino has become very romanticised and people's expectations are unrealistic. There are people walking for many reasons and therefore you cannot expect all to behave the same and kindly way.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Santiago - twice
Via Francigena - Canterbury to Rome (2017)
Rome to Jerusalem (2017)
#22
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
This is an interesting view. However for me the magic of those moments when we speak our truth to one another on our pilgrimage - with respect and with love- have been some of the greatest gifts I have been given by fellow pilgrims. Expressing how we feel and owning it takes many of us to a different level. Each Camino is individual and unique and the journey within ourselves is one of the greatest pilgrimages we can experience. I love the idea of being able to take that which has risen up on the way to discuss with someone to complete the pilgrimage and not isolate myself with angst at home.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015); February/March (2019)
#23
I suppose disgruntlement comes from unmet expectations of one sort or another. One expectation that I have sensed reading between the lines of other threads on this website (not this thread) is that the Camino is like a tour experience. Another is that the Camino is a bucket list item to be checked off. Closely related to the last is that the Camino is strictly a personal achievement to be accomplished, with the proof being the almighty Compostela. I think if someone approaches the Camino from such a perspective there is a good likelihood they will be disappointed, in the “is that all there is” vein.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April 2017
Porto to Santiago October 2017
Santiago to Muxia /Finesterre Nov 2017
#24
Have really taken in all ths comments mentioned on this thread , very interesting.
What is it about doing the camino ? Having done the CF and Porto to SDC (Im a bicigrino) But anyways my point is after a few weeks after returning the magic wears off and you feel the need to go back and do another to enjoy the experience again , Im planning the via de la plata at the end of the year , maybe there is no end to wanting to return to do another camino once you have been bitten.
Buen camino
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#27
I found a lot of people were judging me.
Did they say something? I have only met two pilgrims who were proselytising, which carried the implication that I should want to be saved by their brand of Christianity. Everyone else who spoke of motivations, faith, and religion was talking solely about themselves. I can bear the burden of knowing two pilgrims out of tens of thousands judged me (though there may have been others who were doing so in their mind, but I am not a mind reader).

There may be judgement about my walking pace, my use of trekking poles, my food selection, my hat, my choice of equipment, or my snoring, but is any of that worth feeling badly about myself? Even a dog may judge me if food is not presented at the expected hour. We can work that out!:)
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2015) Camino Frances/Muxia/Fisterre (2017) Caminho Portuguese/Fisterre
(2019) Camino del Norte
#29
When I walked a few years ago, I felt judged because I would walk by folks (or they by me) and smile and, sometimes, they would not smile back. I had to laugh at myself when I realized that ALL of that was in my head. I have no idea whether or not people are judging me. And if they make it clear that they are, I have no need to guess at why. That was one of my most profound learnings on that Camino.
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#31
I love this forum. We share and give, can savour the memories, read or see photographs of things we may have missed on our Camino. I read an article by a disgruntled pilgrim, which received some mixed reviews and responses. From my experience, any Camino can bring out the best and worst in me :):mad:, but the chance to learn and grow comes from both. If you find someone has major issues, is having difficulties, or perhaps you have them, during the adventure or upon arrival in Santiago, don't forget that you or they have the chance to share their experience in a group or alone in the Chapel for Prayer and Reflection, where we receive our Credentials. I, and I know others, have benefitted from being able to talk to others in confidence with objective and sympathetic listeners. If you are projecting frustration or even anger, sadness or despair, at the end of your Camino, it could be the symptom of something much deeper that has been awoken or stirred by your Pilgrimage. Its what its all about ;) Love, Light & Nature, Keith.
I have completed my first Camino 2 weeks ago and the only burning issues Which remain have little to do with the long queue to collect the compestela!
My observation is that there is a sizeable majority of pilgrims that are very budget conscience and it is therefore incomprensible that the municipal albergues that they depend on seem to equate cheap lodgings as a quid pro quo for less dignity granted to the pilgrims. I refer to the systemic removal of all kitchen utensils down to cutlery and plates in the kitchens which prevent pilgrims the means to cook a simple pasta or rice dish after a long day’s walk! The removal of shower doors also furthers the feeling of indignity being offered. This is particularly prevalent in the province of Xunta starting with O’ceberio, which is a comparitively new building, and others leading up to Santiago with the exception of Monte Gozo.
Is this a simple case of corruption of the local Hospitaleras by the local restaurants? Should the Camino route be redrawn to exclude these locations?
 

Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#32
@Damienw Just for clarification - there is no "province of Xunta". O Cebreiro is the first village within the province of Galicia on the Camino Frances. The Xunta is the Galician provincial government. Unlike other parts of the Camino Frances where public albergues are mostly provided by local town councils those in Galicia are largely built and operated centrally by the Xunta. The great majority of these have no cooking equipment now. I am fairly sure this is a matter of official policy rather than the result of corruption or collusion at a local level. While I agree that this is an unfortunate and undesirable situation I hardly think that it constitutes an attack on the "dignity" of pilgrims.
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#33
@Damienw Just for clarification - there is no "province of Xunta". O Cebreiro is the first village within the province of Galicia on the Camino Frances. The Xunta is the Galician provincial government. Unlike other parts of the Camino Frances where public albergues are mostly provided by local town councils those in Galicia are largely built and operated centrally by the Xunta. The great majority of these have no cooking equipment now. I am fairly sure this is a matter of official policy rather than the result of corruption or collusion at a local level. While I agree that this is an unfortunate and undesirable situation I hardly think that it constitutes an attack on the "dignity" of pilgrims.
@Damienw Just for clarification - there is no "province of Xunta". O Cebreiro is the first village within the province of Galicia on the Camino Frances. The Xunta is the Galician provincial government. Unlike other parts of the Camino Frances where public albergues are mostly provided by local town councils those in Galicia are largely built and operated centrally by the Xunta. The great majority of these have no cooking equipment now. I am fairly sure this is a matter of official policy rather than the result of corruption or collusion at a local level. While I agree that this is an unfortunate and undesirable situation I hardly think that it constitutes an attack on the "dignity" of pilgrims.
Oh come on !! The smirks on the faces of the hosting hospitaleras when asked about the cooking facilities beggars belief that there is something not quite right ! This is worst than anything John Cleese of Fawlty Towers would do ! Martin Sheen as a Galician native and apologist would be quite ashamed of this policy! Personally, IMHO, if O’ Cebriero was publically shamed by a redrawing of the route to exclude it the policy would be changed!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#34
Welcome to the forum, @Damienw . I hope you otherwise enjoyed your camino in spite of those indignities.

The smirks on the faces of the hosting hospitaleras
More likely a wry expression.

if O’ Cebriero was publically shamed by a redrawing of the route
and they should built new well-equipped 5-Euro albergues on the new route.
 
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
#36
Reroute the camino to bypass O'Cebriero? Really? Pilgrims stop in O'Cebriero because of the ancient monastery and the unique architecture, not because they expect to find pots and pans. ;):D
but but but Bala I can't do without my Le Creuset grillpan...;) ...ok will leave now.. . This is not the Non Serious thread after all...
 

MikeyC

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF - September 2016
CF - April May 2017
Shikoku - October 2017
Kumano Kodo - October 2017
#37
I was taught by a courteous hospitalero that a pilgrim accepts with gratitude what is offered. If it exceeds expectations be thankful. If it falls short perhaps our expectations were set too high.
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#38
People walk the Camino for different reasons! Not everyone is a pilgrim!? “Disgruntled” covers a range of emotions. Each person is entitled to them as they are! Behavior is something else! If a person is disgruntled, I.e., dissapointed, angry, and simply expressing their feelings..so be it! No need for conversion. Who decides that someone else should not have expectations on the journey? We all have them!
 

Peregrinopaul

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP(2012) Madrid(2014)Frances(2015) VdlP(2016)
VdlP(2017)Sanabres (2018) Frances reverse(2018)
#39
The number one killer of a "fun" pilgrimage! One of the hardest things to do is to walk/cycle without expectations. However, they make dealing with emotions much harder. When my walk begins to become a grind, I remind myself, Bill Bryson style, that the activity is optional. I can quit any time I want.

So far, I have not!;)
You’re absolutely right falcon. It is the expectations we have to fight, because truth be told, in my experience of past caminos, it has always been a totally fulfilling experience, and, dare I say, enjoyable. I’m on Camino right now, on my bike, from Madrid. I cut across to the VdlP Sanabres and the last six days have been a form of Purgatory. I was so cold and miserable in A GUDIÑA, I decided I couldn’t take any more of the atrocious weather and started looking at train timetables. But next morning I carried on, through another drenching, willing to recognise that I was on a pilgrimage not a holiday. I’m a couple of days out from Santiago and I’m sure the Pilgrim Mass will move me.
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#40
Thanks for all the comments.

I greatly enjoyed my first Camino but I have had some time to reflect on this issue and say that the disappointment of the faces of the youngsters and those on a budget merits some consideration!

I would finally say that this present Galician policy ill befits the Province as a worthy custodian of the Way!

I believe Jesus faced a similar situation with the moneylenders in the Temple!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#41
Who decides that someone else should not have expectations on the journey? We all have them!
Not I, anyway. I just pointed out that by having specific expectations, one creates a situation where disappointment is more likely. Sometimes it is good to set goals and specific targets/expectations, but in other cases it is not.

I believe Jesus faced a similar situation with the moneylenders in the Temple!
Gosh, you have me quite puzzled.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Pomplano to Santiago (March 29-May 6 2018)
#42
The number one killer of a "fun" pilgrimage! One of the hardest things to do is to walk/cycle without expectations. However, they make dealing with emotions much harder. When my walk begins to become a grind, I remind myself, Bill Bryson style, that the activity is optional. I can quit any time I want.

So far, I have not!;)
Right?!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) portugues(2013)San Salvador (2017)
#43
I love this forum. We share and give, can savour the memories, read or see photographs of things we may have missed on our Camino. So said Keith. I agree.
 

Rondimc

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Future (2017)
#44
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
Excellent comment. We should all try to be "gruntled" pilgrims!
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#45
Not I, anyway. I just pointed out that by having specific expectations, one creates a situation where disappointment is more likely. Sometimes it is good to set goals and specific targets/expectations, but in other cases it is not.


Gosh, you have me quite puzzled.
The Camino is primarily a pilgrimage following in the footsteps of a follower of Jesus! It is a puzzle indeed that the forum members seem to forget this! The Dominicans at Rabanal are inspirational in reminding us of this !!
 

Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#46
@Damienw I share your irritation and frustration at the lack of cooking equipment in the Galician Xunta's albergues. It is an inconvenience. But there is an enormous leap from that to your suggestion that local hospitaleras have been corrupted by local businesses and are therefore comparable to the moneychangers in the temple. We also clearly have a very different understanding of the meaning of "dignity". My own self-worth and the value I assign to others is unlikely to be seriously dented by my inability to cook spaghetti bolognese on any given day. I do not immediately assume that the failure of an albergue to provide me with one particular facility is motivated by greed or contempt for me and my fellow pilgrims, or that such a facility is essential to the definition of an albergue. If you truly feel that boycotting the Xunta albergues and bypassing O Cebreiro is a proportionate and appropriate response to the situation you discovered then you are of course free to do so. Personally I will try to find less dramatic solutions to my occasional frustrations.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#47
I have completed my first Camino 2 weeks ago and the only burning issues Which remain have little to do with the long queue to collect the compestela!
My observation is that there is a sizeable majority of pilgrims that are very budget conscience and it is therefore incomprensible that the municipal albergues that they depend on seem to equate cheap lodgings as a quid pro quo for less dignity granted to the pilgrims. I refer to the systemic removal of all kitchen utensils down to cutlery and plates in the kitchens which prevent pilgrims the means to cook a simple pasta or rice dish after a long day’s walk! The removal of shower doors also furthers the feeling of indignity being offered. This is particularly prevalent in the province of Xunta starting with O’ceberio, which is a comparitively new building, and others leading up to Santiago with the exception of Monte Gozo.
Is this a simple case of corruption of the local Hospitaleras by the local restaurants? Should the Camino route be redrawn to exclude these locations?
Holla DamienW! I hope your camino is bringing you what you want and need, and a lot of the unexpected too :) I know what you mean about fascilities at municipal alberques seeming and often being sub-standard to those in private hostals or alberques. I and many others have experienced this for ourselves. Its obviously a source of disdain for you, as for a lot of pilgrims. From the alberques I experienced, I seldom book private unless I really have to. I'm throwing these points out for discussion, have dipped-into your comments for some points, but I do not necessarily believe or hold to every point or perspective. Pilgrims will hopefully contribute and comment based upon their experiences:
  • There are a lot of excellent municipal alberques, accomodating the needs of pilgrims overnighting.
  • There are both private and M. Alb. that it is good to leave behind as we set off in the morning.
  • The limitation/withdrawal/omission of key facilities at some M.Alb. seem to be/could be due to the influence of local businesses wishing to prosper and cash-in on the pilgrims staying in their town/village. These tend to be more common in small locations, away from supermarkets and shops but with a concentration of cafes, pubs and restaurants.
  • It is logical and right that private alberques provide far better and more private accomodation to those who can afford it and can book in advance.
  • Municipal Alberques are more often bed bug infested (?)
  • You never find bed bugs in private accomodation (?)
  • There is a level of 'snobery' on Camino, between those who go private over those who municipal.
  • Municipal Alberques should aspire to equal if not better the fascilities of private accomodation.
  • Its right to have such a broad spectrum of choice for overnighting.
  • Muncipal alberques bring us 'down to Earth' and closer as a pilgrim community, show aspects of human nature and de-toxify us from our comfortable, consumerist existance.
  • All Pilgrims have the right to a high standard and equal level of accomodation (?)
The Confraternity of Sant James have two Alberques which hold to the philosophy and tradition of The Pilgrim Way and Camino in Spain - perhaps the municipal authorities should aspire not just to their standards, but also to their expectations and philosophy?
Even if the topic is a source of disdain, even anger or sadness, does it matter anyway? It happens all around us, everywhere, no matter where we are, advertising telling us what we need and how poor we must be and laking in worthwhile experiences if we don't have or can buy their products. Businesses want your money, pamper to the wealthy or comfortably well off, whilst everyone else makes-do. What is 'high-standard'? If we want that, where will it end?
What really matters on Camino? I'm not sure that the quality of my overnight accomodation is the most important issue for me, nor if it must be equal to everyone elses. I've fond memories of some pretty bad alberques - there were not many, but they were more 'fun' and enlightening than the private ones, and bring us down to Earth, are great 'equalers' whether you're a CEO or otherwise. And I've met Pilgrims who complained bitterly about their private accomodation, too. I wish you well DamienW, Buen Camino.
 
Last edited:

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#48
@Damienw I share your irritation and frustration at the lack of cooking equipment in the Galician Xunta's albergues. It is an inconvenience. But there is an enormous leap from that to your suggestion that local hospitaleras have been corrupted by local businesses and are therefore comparable to the moneychangers in the temple. We also clearly have a very different understanding of the meaning of "dignity". My own self-worth and the value I assign to others is unlikely to be seriously dented by my inability to cook spaghetti bolognese on any given day. I do not immediately assume that the failure of an albergue to provide me with one particular facility is motivated by greed or contempt for me and my fellow pilgrims, or that such a facility is essential to the definition of an albergue. If you truly feel that boycotting the Xunta albergues and bypassing O Cebreiro is a proportionate and appropriate response to the situation you discovered then you are of course free to do so. Personally I will try to find less dramatic solutions to my occasional frustrations.

I may have suggested a perhaps a radical and provocative solution but what would you suggest ??
 
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
#49
I may have suggested a perhaps a radical and provocative solution but what would you suggest ??
If on a strict budget and when there are no cooking utensils available in the Xunta albergues I saw lots of pilgrims eating cold cuts / meats and tinned goodies.
One can eat a balanced meal even without using a stove and pots and pans.
I know I had to do it that way during my student days.
 

Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#50
I may have suggested a perhaps a radical and provocative solution but what would you suggest ??
In that sort of situation I simply eat cold food. I have walked the Camino Frances three times. Much of my walking these days is on pilgrimage routes with a far more basic infrastructure than the Camino Frances. I do not assume that cooking facilities will be available or that they are a basic human right. I believe that part of the pilgrimage experience is reducing one's demands to a minimum and taking pleasure and satisfaction in the simplicity that goes with that. Cooking facilities are a benefit I enjoy when they are available. But they are not essential or mine by right.
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#52
If on a strict budget and when there are no cooking utensils available in the Xunta albergues I saw lots of pilgrims eating cold cuts / meats and tinned goodies.
One can eat a balanced meal even without using a stove and pots and pans.
I know I had to do it that way during my student days.
Holla DamienW! I hope your camino is bringing you what you want and need, and a lot of the unexpected too :) I know what you mean about fascilities at municipal alberques seeming and often being sub-standard to those in private hostals or alberques. I and many others have experienced this for ourselves. Its obviously a source of disdain for you, as for a lot of pilgrims. From the alberques I experienced, I seldom book private unless I really have to. I'm throwing these points out for discussion, have dipped-into your comments for some points, but I do not necessarily believe or hold to every point or perspective. Pilgrims will hopefully contribute and comment based upon their experiences:
  • There are a lot of excellent municipal alberques, accomodating the needs of pilgrims overnighting.
  • There are both private and M. Alb. that it is good to leave behind as we set off in the morning.
  • The limitation/withdrawal/omission of key facilities at some M.Alb. seem to be/could be due to the influence of local businesses wishing to prosper and cash-in on the pilgrims staying in their town/village. These tend to be more common in small locations, away from supermarkets and shops but with a concentration of cafes, pubs and restaurants.
  • It is logical and right that private alberques provide far better and more private accomodation to those who can afford it and can book in advance.
  • Municipal Alberques are more often bed bug infested (?)
  • You never find bed bugs in private accomodation (?)
  • There is a level of 'snobery' on Camino, between those who go private over those who municipal.
  • Municipal Alberques should aspire to equal if not better the fascilities of private accomodation.
  • Its right to have such a broad spectrum of choice for overnighting.
  • Muncipal alberques bring us 'down to Earth' and closer as a pilgrim community, show aspects of human nature and de-toxify us from our comfortable, consumerist existance.
  • All Pilgrims have the right to a high standard and equal level of accomodation (?)
The Confraternity of Sant James have two Alberques which hold to the philosophy and tradition of The Pilgrim Way and Camino in Spain - perhaps the municipal authorities should aspire not just to their standards, but also to their expectations and philosophy?
Even if the topic is a source of disdain, even anger or sadness, does it matter anyway? It happens all around us, everywhere, no matter where we are, advertising telling us what we need and how poor we must be and laking in worthwhile experiences if we don't have or can buy their products. Businesses want your money, pamper to the wealthy or comfortably well off, whilst everyone else makes-do.
Gosh ! It’s bugging me that wanting to help those pilgrims less fortunate than myself should bring such a reaction. Anyone who makes the climb up to O’ Cebreiro on cold and rainy day to be greeted by a street full of tempting restaurants and then find that what has been a very extensively renovated kitchen has been deliberately prevented from being used by those pilgrims on a restricted budget as a matter of policy
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francé 2005; 2016
Inglés June 2017
del Salvador Sep 2018
Primitivo Oct 2018
#53
Gosh ! It’s bugging me that wanting to help those pilgrims less fortunate than myself should bring such a reaction. Anyone who makes the climb up to O’ Cebreiro on cold and rainy day to be greeted by a street full of tempting restaurants and then find that what has been a very extensively renovated kitchen has been deliberately prevented from being used by those pilgrims on a restricted budget as a matter of policy
That's why this forum is so good - lots of good chat and some fun too, great advice. A place to vent your spleen - sometimes. You'll get supoort and help too. How's it going, Damien? Where are you. I love those O'Cebreiro sections. Keith
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#54
That's why this forum is so good - lots of good chat and some fun too, great advice. A place to vent your spleen - sometimes. You'll get supoort and help too. How's it going, Damien? Where are you. I love those O'Cebreiro sections. Keith
The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino! In O’ Cebreiro where is the shop amongst a street full of restaurants, to buy the cold cuts? Who is going to pack and carry a mess kit from SJdPdp just for use on the last stretch!! Thank heavens for the Hospitaleros of Monte Gozo who allowed the kitchens to used to their full potential !! On a personal note I am recently retired and living in France!
 
Camino(s) past & future
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
#56
The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino! In O’ Cebreiro where is the shop amongst a street full of restaurants, to buy the cold cuts? Who is going to pack and carry a mess kit from SJdPdp just for use on the last stretch!! Thank heavens for the Hospitaleros of Monte Gozo who allowed the kitchens to used to their full potential !! On a personal note I am recently retired and living in France!
You are not the only one .:rolleyes:
 
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
#57
The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino! In O’ Cebreiro where is the shop amongst a street full of restaurants, to buy the cold cuts? Who is going to pack and carry a mess kit from SJdPdp just for use on the last stretch!! Thank heavens for the Hospitaleros of Monte Gozo who allowed the kitchens to used to their full potential !! On a personal note I am recently retired and living in France!
Buy a small pot or pan in many of the Ferreterias and / or Bazar Chinos before reaching Galicia. To be found in almost every village.
This is my last say on this.
 

Bradypus

Antediluvian
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
#59
In O’ Cebreiro where is the shop amongst a street full of restaurants, to buy the cold cuts?
It is not on the street full of restaurants. It is perhaps 50 metres away from the main street. Perhaps it would have been more helpful and productive to seek out and make use of the things that are available than to focus so much of your time and energy on the one thing which is not?
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#60
DamianW Quote....”The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino!”

Really?? There are a couple of small supermarkets to purchase food in Valcarce? We often buy food there for the evening meal.

We usually stay in private albergues, often without the ability to cook. We do not mind and actually save money and assure ourselves of getting sufficient vitamins. We eat many an evening meal in our room. great salads...fruit, greens, oranges, Lemons, kiwi, tomatoes,olives, multi colored peppers,nuts, bread, Jabon! We also buy the small olive oil and vinegar packets which are available in many supermarkets. What we also carry are titanium cups and a small apparatus to boil water. Plan ahead.
 
Last edited:

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#61
DamianW Quote....”The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino!”

Really?? There are a couple of small supermarkets to purchase food in Valcarce? We often buy food there for the evening meal.

We usually stay in private albergues, often without the ability to cook. We do not mind and actually save money and assure ourselves of getting sufficient vitamins. We eat many an evening meal in our room. great salads...fruit, greens, oranges, tomatoes,olives, nuts. We also buy the small olive oil and vinegar packets which are available in many supermarkets. What we carry are titanium cups and a small apparatus to boil water.
You are not the only one .:rolleyes:
Then take pride in your accomplishment and
 

Purky

The Dutch guy
Camino(s) past & future
Breathe properly.
Stay curious.
And walk a camino.
#62
I normally don't do this, because I firmly believe in freedom of personal experience (and responsibility) and I tend to avoid conflict in any shape or form. But I want to play the devil's advocate here (and hope I don't become too preachy), and boldly state that being disgruntled has no place on a pilgrimage. If someone feels disgruntled as an end result, he or she simply didn't get it.
Because a pilgrimage is not a holiday or a cheap vacation. It is supposed to hurt, that is what happens if you have to do away with expectations and suspend judgement while stripping down your life and luggage to only the essentials. Frustration, anger, sadness or despair, those are different beasts altogether and with some luck, hard walking and grace you will hopefully get past those during your camino. Or the next.
But being disgruntled means that expectations weren't met, that you remain displeased about challenges you didn't deal with well or that you are disappointed with the way things turned out. All the things, in short, that might have driven you to undertake a pilgrimage in the first place. And if the result of walking that camino is still feeling disgruntled, you might want to face the possibility that a pilgrimage just isn't your cup of tea.
Something irked me about my own earlier post. I still stand behind the message I tried to get across, but I have to agree it is a bit preachy and not very nuanced. It bothered me, to be honest. So I decided to come at it from another angle and give it another try, for my own benefit. My issue with disgruntlement, no matter how human it is to feel it, might just be a semantic matter. Because the feeling of disgruntlement for me is very closely linked with a sense of entitlement.
And that just doesn't work for me in conjunction with a camino. In my experience walking the camino in a way mimicked the relationship between a student and a teacher. I walked as a student and had to 'answer' everything the camino threw at me or put before me. And as a typical student I also had to deal with all my internal goodies like frustration, anger, sadness or despair when I didn't come up with the right solution for that particular day/moment quick enough or at all.
But disgruntlement was never an option for me. That feeling, if it was continuous, would somehow violate the relationship to the point where walking the camino/a pilgrimage would in fact be pointless. It would just become a very long walk, without all the highs and lows that come with discovery and growth. I signed up for the camino willingly and by doing so had to accept some discomfort and disappointment beforehand. Like a contract, or a letter of intent, but without a guaranteed outcome.
There is vulnerability in being a student: you have to be open, receptive and willing to learn (and sometimes fail). Entitlement will get in the way of that attitude and while disgruntlement is acceptable as a fleeting feeling, in my opinion it is useless and very counterproductive for longer periods of time. There is no grace in it.
 

Damienw

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2018
#63
You can bring pot and pans with you on your next Camino .
Soundly preached but if I falter on the first day over the mountain would you share my burden ??

You can bring pot and pans with you on your next Camino .
DamianW Quote....”The more this thread is going on the more I wonder if I am the only one who has actually completed the Camino!”

Really?? There are a couple of small supermarkets to purchase food in Valcarce? We often buy food there for the evening meal.

We usually stay in private albergues, often without the ability to cook. We do not mind and actually save money and assure ourselves of getting sufficient vitamins. We eat many an evening meal in our room. great salads...fruit, greens, oranges, Leon’s kiwi,tomatoes,olives, nuts. Jason, bread. We also buy the small olive oil and vinegar packets which are available in many supermarkets. What we carry are titanium cups and a small apparatus to boil water.
Stay on point, my criticism is of Xunta in Galicia !!
 
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