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Camino Podcast Episode 31 - John & Rebekah

Dave

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
First: Camino Francés 2002; most recent: Norte/Primitivo 2019
Hi everyone,

Well, it has been a very long time, but I'm happy to share that I have just posted a new episode of the Camino Podcast, featuring interviews with John Brierley and Rebekah Scott. Here's the blurb:

The Camino de Santiago has a powerful gravitational pull. It draws many back for multiple pilgrimages; in some cases, it reorganizes individuals' lives. That is certainly the case for the two people featured in this episode. John Brierley first walked the Camino three decades ago. In that first pilgrimage, he quickly realized he would become a guidebook writer, and indeed, he has become the most read English-language author in that realm (see caminoguides.com for more). Rebekah Scott, meanwhile, moved to Moratinos, Spain--a small town in the meseta on the Camino Francés--many years ago. She is deeply involved in many pilgrimage-related initiatives, many of them bundled beneath her Peaceable Projects organization (see peaceableprojects.org). Both share stories from their lives on the Camino, along with previews of their upcoming work.

I have around 10-12 episodes in development for the moment, before I head back out to continue my trans-US walk. Hope to be churning them out quite regularly over the next couple of months!

https://soundcloud.com/user-939742370%2Fepisode-31-john-rebekah
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'CP, Frances,Norte,Salv/prim;Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, Vdlp 2019>Táb/ Prt Levante 2020
Wow 😮
Loved your podcast Dave. I listened to it in one go!!

John Brierley and Rebekah Scott are both so inspirational.. and I felt immersed in their journey.
I feel fortunate to have discovered the camino and then through this forum; have access to read and hear from so many caring people.

Good luck with your own guide updates Dave. (I used your Norte guide in 2014)

Buen camino
Annie
 

Dave

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
First: Camino Francés 2002; most recent: Norte/Primitivo 2019
Wow 😮
Loved your podcast Dave. I listened to it in one go!!

John Brierley and Rebekah Scott are both so inspirational.. and I felt immersed in their journey.
I feel fortunate to have discovered the camino and then through this forum; have access to read and hear from so many caring people.

Good luck with your own guide updates Dave. (I used your Norte guide in 2014)

Buen camino
Annie
Thank you, Annie--I really appreciate it!

I won't say I can die in peace now, but I am much more at ease with the new edition in existence, as it's leaps and bounds better than our first attempt.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF14(21?)
Aussie Camino15
WHW15
CP16
CdelN Fin/Muxia18
GGW StCuthWay HadrWall CotswoldWay19
Thanks very much Dave for your excellent podcast. Great to hear John Brierley, who was one of our original inspirations to walk the Camino and with whose philosophy of the Camino we completely identify.
It was inspirational to hear Rebekah, whose energy and concern for the Camino has allowed many to contribute to its continuation.
Thanks to you also for your Norte guide which we used in 2018 and had a wonderful experience.
Buen Camino
Anne & Pat
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
NO, he is serious. Dave told me he is planning to walk across the continental US. I believe the details are somewhere on his podcast website. In a PM exchange, he told me that he will be walking from late February through August.

As Dave lives in Portland, Oregon, on the US West Coast, one imagines he will walk from west to the east, with the sun in his face. But, I do not know this for a fact. I also do not know his purpose or theme. I not know if this is solo, with others, etc. All I know is that he is planning to do this.

You know, and not to stir up a hornet's nest.. but if Dave posted his planned route here in the forum, members of this Forum might be able to show him some "Camino magic" and provide overnight lodging or other logistical assistance, as needed. Having a safety net is a good thing.

Dave will be covering some 2,500 miles, or more than 4,000 kilometers. He will face challenges that we pilgrims do not face on Camino in Europe. Some of the terrain is huge, flat and VERY sparsely populated.

Also, America is a relatively young country - only about 243 years old to be exact. It does not have a tradition of pilgrimage or long distance hiking, other than the popular through hiking routes (PCT. AT, CDT, etc.), generally running north to south, or vice versa.

There is no American Camino as such. There is a nascent missionary trail in California linking the old Spanish missions from San Diego in the south to San Jose (?) in the North. But, this is a very recent development and there is no established "Camino infrastructure" as such.

There are no albergues or hostals every 15 - 30 kilometers along the route. Dave will likely have to resort to covert tenting camping in some remote places, or staying in chain hotels - none of which are cheap. But, I hope we can help minimize this to some degree.

Over here, people who walk from town-to-town along secondary or tertiary roads (off established trails) are looked at oddly. It is just the culture. Not good or bad, better or worse. It is just different. In some places, the local sheriff or police may even regard the hiker as an itinerant / hobo, which in some jurisdictions is actually a misdemeanor... just sayin...

Nominally, someone on Camino in Europe covers perhaps 1,000 km per month. But Dave is allowing himself more time. I think this is a smart move. Perhaps he has family and friends along the way to visit, and who can provide some support.

So here is the issue: Can we can help Dave fill in the gaps? What about a thread called "Dave's Big Walk...?" We can use it for him to keep us advised on his progress. We can us Private Conversations to make specific arrangements.

If Dave happens to plan to be walking 10 - 20 miles from where you live (off route), give him a shower, bed and meals overnight, then return him to where you met him so he can continue. THAT is the Camino spirit! I suspect we will all be using Google Maps a lot... Hope he has a cellular signal...

Most of my many European friends have NO IDEA how huge the American continent is. Most maps do not do it justice. The one state of Texas is approximately the size of Spain, and is so large that it has separate climatic and geographic zones, just like Spain. As we drive along from coast to coast, it takes a solid four-long driving days, we cross US states every few hours. In Europe, you cross from one country to another in the same time. It truly is very big.

Only when one gets east of the Mississippi River does the terrain start to resemble what we are used to seeing with undulating hills and valleys. Generally, the west coast has a coastal plain until the foothills of the Rocky Mountains intervene. This in turn leads to the Rockies proper and what we call the Continental Divide. This is like the Pyrenees on steroids. Once over these tall mountains, one gradually reaches the Plains States.

The Plains States, parts of Colorado, the Dakotas, Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma, etc. resemble the steppes of western Russian and eastern Poland. In some cases, there is a whole lot of nothing out there.

It is not uncommon for gas stations to be hundreds of miles between one another in some western states. I use this fact to point out that obtaining even snacks and safe water is more difficult. Use Google Earth or a printed map, and mind the distance scale.

If you think the Meseta is daunting, multiply those distances between settled places by a factor of 50 and you can better understand what I al talking about here.

Dave does NOT know I am raising this issue. He may reject it out of hand. I totally support his prerogative, whatever way it goes. But it could result in a huge accumulation of interviews for future podcasts... Just sayin...

This is all just me thinking out loud... I cannot help doing so... You KNOW how OCD I can be at times.

After all, he is part of our family...
 

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)
You know, and not to stir up a hornet's nest.. but if Dave posted his planned route here in the forum, members of this Forum might be able to show him some "Camino magic" and provide overnight lodging or other logistical assistance, as needed. Having a safety net is a good thing.
What a great idea! I enthusiatically second Laurie's motion.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I am the incarnation of the old saw that, if you give a chimpanzee a typewriter, he will eventually write the great American novel...

or

even a blind squirrel occasionally finds an acorn...
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
Also, America is a relatively young country - only about 243 years old to be exact. It does not have a tradition of pilgrimage or long distance hiking, other than the popular through hiking routes (PCT. AT, CDT, etc.), generally running north to south, or vice versa.
If you want a truly grand east-west trail across the North American continent you need to go north of the border: (https://thegreattrail.ca/explore-the-map/). It wasn't that long ago that I was reading about a woman who had completed walking the 21,500 km trek (https://www.theloop.ca/first-woman-walk-21500-km-trans-canada-trail-came-back-stunning-photos/).

That said, my presumption was that Dave was hiking it as a through hike like one of the other more famous cross-country hikes (PCT, AT, CDT, etc.) rather than trying to do it like a Camino. And from his own post on the subject, it seems that, rather than trying to blaze his own trail across the continent, he is combining to existing hiking routes (probably inlcuded in you "etc."): the American Discovery Trail (ADT) and the Oregon Trail (OT).

From the videos I've seen of people walking the PCT, AT, and CDT, there seems to be something of a tradition/system of "trail angels" on these routes to help hikers get through. They may be more prevalent on the more popular trails than on the less-hiked ones. I'm sure any "angelic" assistance on the ADT and OT would be helpful to Dave.
 
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Dave

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
First: Camino Francés 2002; most recent: Norte/Primitivo 2019
In this episode, @Rebekah Scott and I talked about her upcoming memoir, A Furnace Full of God. It's been out for about a week now and I just read it today, cover to cover.

Most books and stories derive their dramatic intensity from climactic plot turns or heightened rhetorical twists. By contrast, Furnace captures the grandiosity of the mundane. Whether the stories involve seeking out chickens or fertilizer, walking through the fields with dogs, or attending to the needs of passing pilgrims, Rebekah narrates them in a manner that taps into their authentic core. The book is unflinchingly honest and bare. While that imbues the mundane with potency, it also makes truly consequential moments into emotional gut-punches.

There are a million books involving the Camino out there, but I think you'll find reading this to be a moving experience.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2016 CF;
Hospitalera, Zamora 2017, Hospitalera Grañón 2018, Hospitalera Estella 2019
Hi Dave,
Listened to the podcast at the gym then came home and ordered the book. It will be delivered on Kindle tomorrow. Great day for the gift of reading. Thanks again for starting up your podcasts.
Janet
 


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