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How To Keep The Camino With You After Leaving It

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2), Chemin du Puy, Portuguese, Via de la Plata
#1
Sitting in Fisterra on the 61st day of My Camino. Enjoying the quiet and appreciating the chance to rest my weary body for the first time in 31 days since St. Jean Pied-de-Port. Awoke to a beautiful sunrise over the Atlantic feeling the same sense of awe that the ancient pilgrims must of felt when they reached “the end of the world”.

In the 60 days walking 1630 kilometers from Le Puy I have learned to appreciate the most simple things; a bed with real cotton sheets and a cover sheet and or a towel being luxurious. A smile from a stranger, a “Buen Camino”, a cup of hot tea after an hour or two of walking in the early morning. Starting out in the early morning when the stars were still out especially when the Milky Way was in sight. The dark sky fading into deep blue, fiery red and orange and then the warm bright yellow of the sun. A cold drink after a 30k + walk on a hot day. A hearty 3 course peregrino meal at night with vino tinto. A bed that doesn't squeak and snorers that are not so loud they can be heard over one’s earplugs. An unexpected hug.

What I will miss most of all is the camaraderie. The way peregrinos skip small talk and get almost immediately into your essence of being. At night the sharing of our aches and pains, the stories of our families, travels, and our past and future Caminos.The fun and laughter shared over our nightly meals. Seeing an “old” Camino friend 10K from Santiago after losing them 900K back in France.

As the Camino is winding down and many friends have left for home or about to we struggle with how to keep our Camino’s going. The hardest part of The Camino is leaving it for those of us who have fallen in love with it. I know I will be back but I choose to keep it with me. Along the 1630 kilometers I started with a single stone and have been placing it on crosses and cairns a few times each day. I leave one stone and take another thus transferring my positive thoughts across the length of the Camino. My ritual is to say my prayers and it started with people with Addiction problems and people with Sjogren’s Syndrome and other anti autoimmune diseases and my family. However as you walk the Camino you hear inspiring stories. If you have been reading my blog you will understand that my prayers keep expanding to people with MS, cancer, Crohn’s, parents that have lost a child, children that lose a parent, AIDS. This is causing me to become more compassionate, more humble and helping me to ignore my ego.

So, I am at the End of the World in Finisterre and was planning to throw the last stone into the sea after my final prayer. No. I will keep the stone and each day I am away from The Camino I will place my stone at an appropriate place and say my ever expanding prayers. And I will pick up a new stone and in this way I will never leave The Camino. This is MY Camino.

From my blog:
www.thesenioradventurer.com
 

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
#3
Last edited:

marbuck

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Condom to Pamplona April 2016.
Le Puy to Condom France - April-May 2015.
Roncesvalles to Santiago April - May 2014
Finisterre to Muxia May 2014
#4
The Camino never leaves you, three years after our first Camino I still lurk on here each night. Going back next April.
 

xin loi

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Walked May 14, 2014 from St Jean France

starting to walk again August 25, 2016 --SJPDP to Finisterre
#5
How to keep the Camino? Just smell your backpacks shoulder straps! Finished 10 days ago and after washing my pack in soapy water and letting it hang outside in the rain for 5 days, it still stinks of the 29.8 pounds of sweat and lard I lost on the hike.

Going to remind me of the Camino for a long time.
 

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Camino(s) past & future
Aug-Sept(2016) SJPDP-Finisterre, July-Aug(2017) SJPDP-Muxia-Finisterre, July-Aug(2018) El Norte
#6
Sitting in Fisterra on the 61st day of My Camino. Enjoying the quiet and appreciating the chance to rest my weary body for the first time in 31 days since St. Jean Pied-de-Port. Awoke to a beautiful sunrise over the Atlantic feeling the same sense of awe that the ancient pilgrims must of felt when they reached “the end of the world”.

In the 60 days walking 1630 kilometers from Le Puy I have learned to appreciate the most simple things; a bed with real cotton sheets and a cover sheet and or a towel being luxurious. A smile from a stranger, a “Buen Camino”, a cup of hot tea after an hour or two of walking in the early morning. Starting out in the early morning when the stars were still out especially when the Milky Way was in sight. The dark sky fading into deep blue, fiery red and orange and then the warm bright yellow of the sun. A cold drink after a 30k + walk on a hot day. A hearty 3 course peregrino meal at night with vino tinto. A bed that doesn't squeak and snorers that are not so loud they can be heard over one’s earplugs. An unexpected hug.

What I will miss most of all is the camaraderie. The way peregrinos skip small talk and get almost immediately into your essence of being. At night the sharing of our aches and pains, the stories of our families, travels, and our past and future Caminos.The fun and laughter shared over our nightly meals. Seeing an “old” Camino friend 10K from Santiago after losing them 900K back in France.

As the Camino is winding down and many friends have left for home or about to we struggle with how to keep our Camino’s going. The hardest part of The Camino is leaving it for those of us who have fallen in love with it. I know I will be back but I choose to keep it with me. Along the 1630 kilometers I started with a single stone and have been placing it on crosses and cairns a few times each day. I leave one stone and take another thus transferring my positive thoughts across the length of the Camino. My ritual is to say my prayers and it started with people with Addiction problems and people with Sjogren’s Syndrome and other anti autoimmune diseases and my family. However as you walk the Camino you hear inspiring stories. If you have been reading my blog you will understand that my prayers keep expanding to people with MS, cancer, Crohn’s, parents that have lost a child, children that lose a parent, AIDS. This is causing me to become more compassionate, more humble and helping me to ignore my ego.

So, I am at the End of the World in Finisterre and was planning to throw the last stone into the sea after my final prayer. No. I will keep the stone and each day I am away from The Camino I will place my stone at an appropriate place and say my ever expanding prayers. And I will pick up a new stone and in this way I will never leave The Camino. This is MY Camino.

From my blog:
www.thesenioradventurer.com
And Kevin, don't forget the tinto de verano - or is it verona? :p:p:p
Your friend, Terri
 

xin loi

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Walked May 14, 2014 from St Jean France

starting to walk again August 25, 2016 --SJPDP to Finisterre
#7
Kevin from Chi-town and Terri from southern Oregon? Saw you in Finisterre Sept 25 along with other spots along the trail--Al from Pennsylvania.

Kevin--recall the woman with me at Finisterre? She sat with you while I went back to retrieve my walking stick. Story about her-----While walking out of Santiago I found a shell lying along the path so put it in my pocket. Couple hours later I met this woman and walked with her. After a while I noticed she did not have a shell on her pack and I asked why . She replied that a friend who is a 'Mystic" told her to NOT buy a shell as someone who would help her with her problems would meet her on the Camino and give her a shell. Reached in my pocket for the shell and gave it to her. We then walked together for 3 days to :"The end of the Earth". Going to help her get family back to their home.
 

Yellowfriend

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Porto- Santiago / Fisterra- Muxia sept 2016
SJPP- Santiago may 2017planninh
#8
Sitting in Fisterra on the 61st day of My Camino. Enjoying the quiet and appreciating the chance to rest my weary body for the first time in 31 days since St. Jean Pied-de-Port. Awoke to a beautiful sunrise over the Atlantic feeling the same sense of awe that the ancient pilgrims must of felt when they reached “the end of the world”.

In the 60 days walking 1630 kilometers from Le Puy I have learned to appreciate the most simple things; a bed with real cotton sheets and a cover sheet and or a towel being luxurious. A smile from a stranger, a “Buen Camino”, a cup of hot tea after an hour or two of walking in the early morning. Starting out in the early morning when the stars were still out especially when the Milky Way was in sight. The dark sky fading into deep blue, fiery red and orange and then the warm bright yellow of the sun. A cold drink after a 30k + walk on a hot day. A hearty 3 course peregrino meal at night with vino tinto. A bed that doesn't squeak and snorers that are not so loud they can be heard over one’s earplugs. An unexpected hug.

What I will miss most of all is the camaraderie. The way peregrinos skip small talk and get almost immediately into your essence of being. At night the sharing of our aches and pains, the stories of our families, travels, and our past and future Caminos.The fun and laughter shared over our nightly meals. Seeing an “old” Camino friend 10K from Santiago after losing them 900K back in France.

As the Camino is winding down and many friends have left for home or about to we struggle with how to keep our Camino’s going. The hardest part of The Camino is leaving it for those of us who have fallen in love with it. I know I will be back but I choose to keep it with me. Along the 1630 kilometers I started with a single stone and have been placing it on crosses and cairns a few times each day. I leave one stone and take another thus transferring my positive thoughts across the length of the Camino. My ritual is to say my prayers and it started with people with Addiction problems and people with Sjogren’s Syndrome and other anti autoimmune diseases and my family. However as you walk the Camino you hear inspiring stories. If you have been reading my blog you will understand that my prayers keep expanding to people with MS, cancer, Crohn’s, parents that have lost a child, children that lose a parent, AIDS. This is causing me to become more compassionate, more humble and helping me to ignore my ego.

So, I am at the End of the World in Finisterre and was planning to throw the last stone into the sea after my final prayer. No. I will keep the stone and each day I am away from The Camino I will place my stone at an appropriate place and say my ever expanding prayers. And I will pick up a new stone and in this way I will never leave The Camino. This is MY Camino.

From my blog:
www.thesenioradventurer.com
Thank you for sharing these thoughts.....I just came home from the Camino Portugues,and I try to keep the Camino spirit with me, I miss it so much. So your words are so good to read, Thank you!
 

Yellowfriend

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Porto- Santiago / Fisterra- Muxia sept 2016
SJPP- Santiago may 2017planninh
#9
J

Jas Asyiken

Guest
#10
Thanks for sharing Kevin. Very nice and touching blog you have there too. I was moved to tears on many of your expressions.

When I completed my first Camino on the Frances about a month ago, I broke down at the KM0.00 in Finesterra. I said to myself, that's it, stick a fork in me..I'm done then go watch the emotional sunset to end the quest. Somehow after a week's rest in Santiago then Barcelona, I realized it's never done. We don't get to leave the Camino fully (maybe physically but never body mind and spirit). It's like life...once you are birth, the only "way" is to live it all the way to death. Even then, most likely it's just the body that dies and rot away but in spirit, we're probably not far off. We just defy the gravity of the physical body. In the same way, I'm seeing and still learning about the Camino. Once you are in it, you're in it for good. It's been more than a month after the Camino and believe it or not, I've not gone home!! I've changed to different forms of travels but the journey continues - whether we call it a "Camino" or not, it goes on. So it doesn't really matter if I stay or come off the "way", I am still on "The Way". The only thing that scares me and sometimes gets to me is the change of atmosphere between the Camino and all else other. Like the weather. It was warm and nice (easy to dry my hand wash laundries every evenings) to now the cooler Autuum. There are now more clouds and I miss the blazing sun too. But nothing has really changed with me, on or off the Camino. How I woke up and tried my best each day to stay focused on being happy and grateful on the Camino, I try the same thing now off the Camino. In many ways it is more challenging as the pilgrim spirit becomes more diluted outside the Camino environment that's because we are all still walking but with diversified purposes. But in essence, we are all walking - the same direction time motions us forward and towards the same destination - whether we see it as that or not, we are walking each other home.

I'm now in Portugal and I have been contemplating the Portugese route since last night and I know for a fact that it's only a dilemma because I see the superficial differences being on the Camino route and out. In essence, there's no difference other than a preference. The Camino is really what we wake up to each morning - we term our journey differently - pilgrim or traveller. Does it really matter? But the consolation is, we have a choice how we walk it each day and where we want to walk it.

Have an awesome journey ahead...Buen Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2), Chemin du Puy, Portuguese, Via de la Plata
#12
Thank you for sharing these thoughts.....I just came home from the Camino Portugues,and I try to keep the Camino spirit with me, I miss it so much. So your words are so good to read, Thank you!
Thank you for your reply. We might of passed each other. After Muxia I walked from Santiago to Porto arriving on 6 Oct.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2), Chemin du Puy, Portuguese, Via de la Plata
#13
Thanks for sharing Kevin. Very nice and touching blog you have there too. I was moved to tears on many of your expressions.

When I completed my first Camino on the Frances about a month ago, I broke down at the KM0.00 in Finesterra. I said to myself, that's it, stick a fork in me..I'm done then go watch the emotional sunset to end the quest. Somehow after a week's rest in Santiago then Barcelona, I realized it's never done. We don't get to leave the Camino fully (maybe physically but never body mind and spirit). It's like life...once you are birth, the only "way" is to live it all the way to death. Even then, most likely it's just the body that dies and rot away but in spirit, we're probably not far off. We just defy the gravity of the physical body. In the same way, I'm seeing and still learning about the Camino. Once you are in it, you're in it for good. It's been more than a month after the Camino and believe it or not, I've not gone home!! I've changed to different forms of travels but the journey continues - whether we call it a "Camino" or not, it goes on. So it doesn't really matter if I stay or come off the "way", I am still on "The Way". The only thing that scares me and sometimes gets to me is the change of atmosphere between the Camino and all else other. Like the weather. It was warm and nice (easy to dry my hand wash laundries every evenings) to now the cooler Autuum. There are now more clouds and I miss the blazing sun too. But nothing has really changed with me, on or off the Camino. How I woke up and tried my best each day to stay focused on being happy and grateful on the Camino, I try the same thing now off the Camino. In many ways it is more challenging as the pilgrim spirit becomes more diluted outside the Camino environment that's because we are all still walking but with diversified purposes. But in essence, we are all walking - the same direction time motions us forward and towards the same destination - whether we see it as that or not, we are walking each other home.

I'm now in Portugal and I have been contemplating the Portugese route since last night and I know for a fact that it's only a dilemma because I see the superficial differences being on the Camino route and out. In essence, there's no difference other than a preference. The Camino is really what we wake up to each morning - we term our journey differently - pilgrim or traveller. Does it really matter? But the consolation is, we have a choice how we walk it each day and where we want to walk it.

Have an awesome journey ahead...Buen Camino!
Thank you for your words. After Muxia I walked from Santiago to Porto. The Portuguese Way was very nice. As you say it is simply a beautiful experience to be on The Camino.
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Part frances jun 07/rest frances may- jun 2008/Frances sept-oct 2009/ Sanabres Oct 2010/Frances sept-oct 2011/Aragones Sept-Oct 2012. Hospitalero Sept 2010, Amiga in Pilgrim's Office Oct 2013. Part Primitivo Oct 2013. Portugues from Porto June 2015.
#15
What an inspiring post, Kevin! No, have no fear, the Camino will never leave you!
 

winewalker

Go and do...because Life won't wait.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Camino Portugues 2014, Via Francigena Lucca to Rome 2016, Camino Frances, Way of St.
#16
Loved your blog, Kevin, and it was a pleasure meeting you on the Camino, even if only for one day. A great trick you played on my brother-in-law, pretending to be his old high school buddy! You are an inspiring writer and I'll be following your blog. Keep drinking that vino tinto, my friend, "the fuel of the Camino!" ;)
Sam
 


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