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I would have done someting different than the Camino.

Shaman

New Member
I JUST GOT BACK. I STARTED IN SARRIA. I DID IT TO MEET NEW INTERESTING PEOPLE FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD. IN GENERAL I FOUND PRETTY PROVINCIAL MINDED PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE BECAUSE IT WAS THE "COOL" THING TO DO AFTER THAT HOLLYWOOD MOVIE IN WHICH THE MAIN CHARACTER WENT THROUGH SOME KIND OF PERSONAL TRANSFORMATION AFTER DOING THE CAMINO THAT HIS DEAD SON INTENDED TO DO BUT DIED IN THE PROCESS.

I SAW PEOPLE THAT SHOULD NOT HAVE CONTINUED, WITH FAIRLY SEVERE INJURIES TO THEIR FEET OR LEGS, OR PEOPLE WHO BECAUSE OF THEIR PHYSICAL CONSTITUTION AND/OR AGE SHOULD NOT BE EXERTING THEMSELVES TO THAT DEGREE AND THAT COULD BRING INJURIES DURING THE PROCESS OR IN THE FUTURE FOR THEM. IT IS BASICALLY A WALKING TILL YOU ARE ABOUT TO DROP EXPERIENCE,(I WAS NEVER SO TIRED, BUT MOST PEOPLE I MET WERE). WITHOUT MUCH CONVERSATION OR INTERACTION OF ANY DEPTH; WITH MOSTLY PEOPLE IN A HURRY WITH WHAT SEEMED HAVING NO TIME OR COURTESY TO WAIT FOR YOU IF YOU HAD TO TIE A SHOELACE.

MATCHU PICCU, THE LAND TRIP BETWEEN KATMANDHU AND LASSA, NEPAL, BALI, OR JUST TRAVELING THROUGH SOUTHEAST ASIA ARE FAR MORE EXCITING AND INTERACTING PRODUCING THAN THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO, ESPECIALLY WITH THEIR FRIENDLY NATIVES, RATHER THAN WALKING, EATING WASHING YOUR CLOTHES, AND EATING FAIRLY UNHEALTHY FOOD WHICH IS THE REALITY OF DOING THE CAMINO. AND ALL OF THIS NOT CHEAP BY ANY MEANS BY USA STANDARDS.

THE YELLOW ARROWS THAT POINT TO THE CAMINO ARE NOT SO EASY TO READ SOMETIMES, AND SOMETIMES YOU HAVE TO FIND BY INSTINCT WERE THE PATH IS. IN LATE OCTOBER AND EARLY NOVEMBER IT CAN BE FREEZING AND FOGGY IN THE EARLY MORNING. THEN IT WARMS UP IN THE EARLY AFTERNOON.TO MAKE THINGS WORSE SPAIN IS IN THE MIDST OF A SOCIAL UPHEAVAL WERE TRANSPORTATION AND GENERAL STRIKES ARE QUITE COMMON.

DON'T BE DECEIVED BY PEOPLE THAT HAVE A PSYCHOPATHOLOGICAL MOTIVATION TO SUFFER OR STILL HAVE A PRIMITIVE ATTITUDE ABOUT ORGANIZED CATHOLICISM. DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH AND WHO KNOWS? IT MIGHT STILL BE FOR YOU. FOR ME IT IS NOT.

THERE MIGHT BE FANATICS OUT THERE THAT WILL BE UP IN ARMS ABOUT WHAT I SAID. SORRY I LIVE IN A COUNTRY WHERE WE CAN SPEAK OUR MINDS. MY MOTIVATION IS TO PREVENT OTHER HUMAN BEINGS TO FIND THEMSELVES IN A SITUATION OF SAYING TO THEMSELVES:" THIS IS NOT NEARLY WHAT I EXPECTED. I COULD BE DOING SOMETHING A LOT MORE INTERESTING AND PERSONALLY FULFILLING THAN THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO"

RESPECTFULLY
SHAMAN.
 
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Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Year of past OR future Camino
Many, various, and continuing.
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

Dear "Shaman," You should have done something different than the camino.
I wish you had.

Just why you feel compelled to come to this forum and complain about your unmet expectations is a bit mysterious, but what the heck... you live in a fabulous free country, so we all are entitled to your opinion. (And why you feel compelled to write in capital letters is another thing...doing so online is the same as shouting in peoples´ faces. Please turn off your caps lock key.)

The Camino de Santiago is not for everybody.
It obviously was not for you.
I hope your next venture into spiritual tourism is better able to meet your demands.

Respectfully
Reb.
 

SabineP

Camino = Gratitude + Compassion.
Year of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

Please Shaman, leave out those caps. They are hurting my eyes.
And, Shaman, to me you are a narrowminded person but then again I'm one of those " PEOPLE THAT HAVE A PSYCHOPATHOLOGICAL MOTIVATION TO SUFFER OR STILL HAVE A PRIMITIVE ATTITUDE ABOUT ORGANIZED CATHOLICISM ". Reading that really made me laugh ( had a bad day today so your reality check balances everything out ).
Fine that you live in a country where you can speak your mind, luckily I live in such a country too... :D
And oh yes, I wish you all the luck in your search to something more fullfilling than the Camino. And also obviously finding more nutricious food than you had on the Camino. :roll: :roll: :roll:
 

alansykes

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Except the Francés
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

I'm sorry to hear you didn't enjoy your camino. But, as you say, the freedom to speak one's mind is important everywhere, and nobody in this forum would deny your right to your opinions.

I haven't met anybody who did the camino because it was "cool", and people have been doing it for centuries before the Hollywood film (which I've not seen, but nobody else I know of has ever suggested it was the hugely influential success you suggest: in fact I was under the impression it was a bit of a flop). I've also not met anybody who did it for the masochistic reasons you imply - any extreme exertion will probably involve some pain, but I'd certainly be on the first AVE home if the pain outweighed the pleasure (and I'm delighted to say that new patent socks and a slightly slower first week's walk have meant that I've not had any blisters at all - yet, touch wood).

I also don't think the many social problems Spain is facing are a reason for staying away - if anything, the Spaniards I've spoken to since starting on the Via de la Plata last week have been even more friendly, mildly inquisitive and courteous than on previous visits.

Many of us have wonderful experiences on the camino, gaining physical and/or spiritual strength, meeting like-minded (and enjoyably un-like-minded) people or just enjoying a long walk in beautiful surroundings. It's a pity you clearly didn't.
 

annakappa

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
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.
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

Well you didn't go very far, did you?
Sarria to Santiago doesn't really give you much time to get the feel of the Pilgrimage.
Also in November, there aren't so many Pilgrims walking the Camino.
As for age???? Well some of us over 70 manage much, but much better than people 20 or 30 years younger than us! It's simply a question of knowing what your body can take and training for that.
Anyway this was obviously the wrong experience for you. I guess you saw the movie The Way and that's what sent you out to give it a try!
Good luck on your future adventures, from someone who has lived in 8 far spread countries, has learnt each time the local language so as to be able to "interact", so I guess I have some experience of interesting places to visit, but has now gone back to do the Camino 5 times. The Camino just doesn't compare with an "adventure holiday". Anne
 
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Deleted member 3000

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Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

At my age, I am delighted to be cool! It is the first time since the Vietnam War...
 

tyrrek

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPP-SdC (4-5/2011), Ferrol-SdC (9/2011), Pamplona-SdC (3-4/2012), Camino Finisterre (10/2012), Ourense-SdC (5/2014)
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

I quite enjoyed it, all in all. Buen Camino! :D
 

lovingkindness

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
Re: I WOULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING DIFFERENT THAN THE CAMINO.

Dear Shaman,
You are distressed and, for the moment, furious. I am wondering if the length of time spent on the Camino and the distance covered was just a little too short for you to accomplish the things which you hoped to achieve. I say that in Peace. Saria to Santiago d C is only about a hundred kms. I have found over the years that when hiking a long distance trail, whether a scenic route or a pilgrimage, it takes much longer than a week to settle into the walk, calm down from the frenzy of departure, and inwardly detach myself from the people and things left at home. I am essentially a jangled mess and irritated by myself and anybody else out there that I might encounter. By the second and third week into a walk I am more able to appreciate the people I meet along the way. I am calmer inwardly and have a clearer sense of the spiritual journey ahead. By the fourth week every one along the way seems like a long lost relative. That is how it is for me, and perhaps some others.

I recognise some of the scenes you paint –people hiking in overdrive, others walking to their physical detriment, and some unaware of the needs of those that share the same space. It is shocking. It happens. But these people are not you. Learn from them. You don’t have to be the same.

You wrote, ‘I did it to meet new interesting people from all over the world’. And, indeed, that is what happened, even if at this very minute you don’t think so: everyone you met along the way was a stranger, they were internationals, and, by the look of things, given the emotional way in which you write, they captured your interest, if somewhat negatively. For the short time you were on the Camino you were stimulated but not in the way you hoped.

I wish you well and Peace.
Regards,
Lovingkindness
 

julie

Active Member
Shaman, I'm sorry that your experience was so much different from mine. My Camino was such an intense introspective learning experience that I'm still reaping the rewards seven years later (mind you, I have topped up with several pilgrimages in the intervening years).

Contrary to you, one of my joys was the great depth of interaction with some of my fellow pilgrims. It seemed as if people were walking with open hearts and bonds were formed very quickly. The conversations that ensued were of far greater depth than many I have with people I know extremely well in my regular life.

Maybe I'm deluding myself but, as far as I'm aware, I don't have a "psychopathological motivaton to suffer" and didn't witness anyone who would fit this category. However, I did witness many acts of kindness to strangers in need be it of minor first aid or of something to eat.

The value we place on all our experiences comes down to personal opinion. The Camino, like everything else we do, is not for everyone. What works for me is to approach experiences, especially something like a pilgrimage, without expectations.

The Camino changes shape with you so every time you go, it is different because you are different and you have different things to learn. Despite your negative feelings about it, you learnt things about yourself even if they happened to be clarification of what you don't like.

Often the things that we are most negative about are the things that need some reflection. What is your reaction trying to teach you?
 
Everyone takes up the challenge of the Camino for many different and all sorts of reasons for themselves or others or what ever, but the soul of the Camino and the basis of the Camino is there for every individual to receive their own experience whether it be good or bad or ambivalent. I would have thought if someone is preparing, walking, riding or the such or has completed one or many of the Camino, their thoughts should not be hardened to the point where they blog criticism of others purpose, success or failure. Don't throw the first stone, be placid of thought, each to their own. Live and let live! This comment in itself is. I realise full well, but I had to put pen to paper as too often I read blogs that I find derogatory to a fellow human being whom has received a different experience. It is upsetting not only to those one slanders but also to other readers. Let go of irritations
 
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Well said Shaman, for the innocent or naive I feel you put it together well. With all of life it is not always as we expect it to be. Thanks be that we are not all alike or experience in a similar manner thanks also we are individuals. We are walking through another countries back yards, we are looking, photographing, eating, sleeping etc, imagine if we had people a continual stream walking through our back yards? Would we be up to visitors day in and out? I think it is right to be able to have the freedom of speech and say what you think as it is just giving another perspective to these walks and enabling those who are indecisive to be able to see different views. I hope you have happiness in your journeys wherever they are as to each they have their own criteria, life is often one big pilgrimage.
 

renegadepilgrim

Veteran Pilgrim and Traveler
Year of past OR future Camino
2010: Camino Frances, 2011: Santo Domingo de la Calzada (Hospitalera), 2012: Camino Portuguese from Porto, 2015: Camino Norte
Sounds like you and Francis Tapon are two peas in a pod! :)

Can one of the mods change the all CAPS? My eyes hurt looking at that!
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
In many ways the last 100 km is the worst part. It is crowded. New pilgrims are dealing with physical issues that are long past for the "old timers." It is touristy to an extent that earlier parts are not. Everyone (almost) is focused on Santiago and not "in the moment." Groups formed earlier are breaking up as some dash ahead to meet planes, or simply get the walk finished. Tempers can be getting short. The xunta albergues in Galicia are pretty basic, including very unprivate showers. The weather can be quite rainy. Etc., etc., etc.

On the other hand accommodations are varied and quite frequent. The scenery is spectacular. New food offerings appear (pulpo and orujo come to mind). Santiago is getting nearer. Etc., etc., etc.

Each pilgrim gets to choose the good or the bad. The choice can be a major indicator of the success of the camino. Were I personally to choose the bad, I would definitely view the pilgrimage as a waste of time. I am fortunate because that never has happened. If it does, I won't be back.

See you in April!
 

William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
renegadepilgrim said:
Can one of the mods change the all CAPS? My eyes hurt looking at that!

I'd rather not (though I did break it up into paragraphs), I think it shows the character of the poster and us mods have had a bit of criticism lately for being too heavy handed.
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
William Marques said:
...us mods have had a bit of criticism lately for being too heavy handed.

Not from the vast majority of forum members who really appreciate the time and effort Ivar and the moderator team put into ensuring that the rules are applied equally to everyone and that the forum is keep free of spam and generally very good humoured.

Thank you.

John
 
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renegadepilgrim

Veteran Pilgrim and Traveler
Year of past OR future Camino
2010: Camino Frances, 2011: Santo Domingo de la Calzada (Hospitalera), 2012: Camino Portuguese from Porto, 2015: Camino Norte
William Marques said:
renegadepilgrim said:
Can one of the mods change the all CAPS? My eyes hurt looking at that!

I'd rather not (though I did break it up into paragraphs), I think it shows the character of the poster and us mods have had a bit of criticism lately for being too heavy handed.

If you focused more on the mean-spirited posts and less on "other" stuff, you'd get less criticism. IMHO.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Shaman:

Thank you for sharing your experience. The Camino, in my opinion, is not for everyone.

On the other hand, I believe it has something for everyone. As you reflect in the coming days, I believe you will discover what the Camino had for you.

Many Pilgrims come with a predetermined outcome in mind. The Camino is not there to meet our expectations but, in my opinion, it provides us an environment to take an introspective look at ourselves. I always feel the words of a great Philosopher (Mick Jagger) fit the Camino. "You don't always get what you want but you find sometimes you get what you need" (Not an exact quote).

I am in the process of planning another Spring Camino and looking forward to the journey.

Ultreya,
Joe
 

newfydog

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Pamplona-Santiago, Le Puy- Santiago, Prague- LePuy, Menton- Toulouse, Menton- Rome, Canterbury- Lausanne, Chemin Stevenson, Voie de Vezelay
Shaman said:
IN GENERAL I FOUND PRETTY PROVINCIAL MINDED PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE BECAUSE IT WAS THE "COOL" THING TO DO AFTER THAT HOLLYWOOD MOVIE .

So what % of the pilgrims are Americans? The movie bumped them up from 2% to about 3%. And they are the most common Anglophones out there. Did you try to interact with other people or just seek out your own kind?

Shaman said:
MATCHU PICCU, THE LAND TRIP BETWEEN KATMANDHU AND LASSA, NEPAL, BALI, OR JUST TRAVELING THROUGH SOUTHEAST ASIA ARE FAR MORE EXCITING AND INTERACTING PRODUCING THAN THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO, SHAMAN.


Well, in Nepal also you need to do a hard walk to really interact. And Bali, geez, the beach resort tourist scene dominates so much of the island. I speak Indonesian and still have to work to experience the true Bali.

Shaman said:
MY MOTIVATION IS TO PREVENT OTHER HUMAN BEINGS TO FIND THEMSELVES IN A SITUATION OF SAYING TO THEMSELVES:" THIS IS NOT NEARLY WHAT I EXPECTED.
SHAMAN.


The trip is what you make of it, and you failed to make much of your short Camino. Rather than trying to save others from the same fate, you might try to do better on your own trips.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Shaman,
I had done three Caminos when I managed to persuade my husband to join my friend and me in Sarria to walk the last 114km. I really wanted him to experience it and learn what it was that made me work hard to save my pennies so that I could leave him at home and wak again!
He joined us in Sarria and although he sort of enjoyed the walk he said he could never do that for 5 or 6 weeks. I told him that I couldn't either!
The first week is the hardest - getting used to a different country, different food, language, people, albergues etc.
The 2nd week is when your pack starts to feel like a part of you and you are getting used to getting up at dawn and walking all day.
The 3rd week is when you really start to relax into the rythym of the Camino, meeting the same people, enjoying the camaraderie of familiar faces.
By the 4th week I am in the Zen-zone and nothing fazes me.
By the time I get to Sarria I am so chilled out that I am often astonished by the crowds of noisy new pilgrims and their shiny shoes, spotless clothes, anxious expressions - and untanned arms and legs!
Walking onto Fistera is like the curve on a serif letter - it is the full stop on the story of your camino.
Walking just the first week over and over again would be like Groundhog Day!
 

unadara

Active Member
I enjoy walking, anywhere.
I enjoy meeting other people, and like to walk alone.
I did not know how I would feel on the "camino pilgrimage". There are so many factors that can influence the environment/experience. I will be back in Spain for a 4th time next year (I hope). I think some of the more helpful posts on this forum are those that highlight the "things" we do on Camino that we wouldn't do/tolerate in a million years at home.
I will not hesitate to recommend to friends/foes! to read the posts, books, research and set off walking with an open heart. The people I walked with were talkative, quiet, young, old/er, multi nationalities, (I could have stuck with the Irish though!)
interesting, boring, joyful, sad, tired, energetic...pilgrims.
 
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Kialoa3

Active Member
We have all had disappointing experiences, but that is not to say those experiences were of no consequence simply because they did not live up to a set of preconceived expectations. I have found that our journey without is what helps us to better understand and guide our journey within. People, weather, accommodation, food, lodging whatever you experience in the physical world is bound to disappoint in some way, at some time. As we chafe at these low points we sometimes fail to recognize the opportunity for growth that they offer. The transitory nature of all physical experiences serves up a bewildering menu of exhilaration and disappointment, confusion and clarity, joy and unhappiness. All things change and touch all people differently. Yet, I believe all these things are consequential perhaps even essential waypoints on our life's journey. I have found that by broadening (perhaps tempering is a better word) my reaction to the stimulation of the physical moment I am able to catch (and I must admit this is by no means a perfected practice) a furtive glimpse of the ancient treasure map that leads us, hopefully, to our peace. The choices we make provide (or not) the illumination to see the path we are challenged to find and follow. Our journey through the physical world can be filled with wonders yet sadly (and too frequently) be absent of peace. I wonder why too often we conjure a life defined by action, experience, intensity, and ceaseless movement, and claim that putative sufficiency, as a real need, and a victory. Even when facing the dimming of the day, when the path is hardest to follow we stubbornly, and perhaps fearfully, choose the known darkness over the truth bathed in the light of the path to our peace. Curious.
 

Caminobd

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Walked Camino Francis, Saint Jean to Santiago, 2012 & Pamplona to Santiago 2014
Honestly, having walked the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago, I can say that there were times that I could have totally identified with the capitally, low mood of this post. Some days were a slog, I got tired of bocadillos, being driven off the path by fast moving bicyclists shouting "buen camino" and yes, washing clothes nightly.

However, daily, I get moments where I remember the acres of sunflowers, the vibrant colours of the butterflies, the kindness and hospitality of some of the Spanish, the coffee, the wine, the pilgrim meals, a bed at the end of a day of walking. My favorite day started after day upon day of walking across the meseta and expecting another day of the same terrain, only to cross an amazing midieval bridge that spans an ancient jousting field. And then joy of joys finding a wonderful bar at the end of the bridge, sitting in it, gazing out over the field, drinking coffee and watching the opening ceremonies for the London Olympics on the shop tele until the Canadians brought the flag into the arena. Then, a climb over a hill, on the top of which a volunteer had set up refreshment by donatio, followed by an awesome view on the way down.

As far as injuries were concerned, they seemed to me to be more caused by too much pack weight, pushing the walking past what the body could cope with rather than age. I have been a runner for years, am in my mid fifties and find now that the aches don't heal as fast and it is a sign to slow down, run a little, walk a little but not stop, more pay attention.

Oh, and thank you Mods, I love this forum (hope this is short for moderater).

Kelly
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Memories play tricks on us!

The amazing medieval bridge that spans an ancient jousting field with a wonderful bar at the end of the bridge is a fair way beyond the meseta in Hospital de Orbigo, about 30km past Leon and 15km from Astorga.
When I first walked there in 2002 the annual festival of Passo Honroso was full swing and we thought we were hallucinating when we saw knights in armour on horseback jousting in the fields and ladies in long dresses and high pointed hats daning amongst the colourful tents!

It has been said many times that the Camino is like life itself. With ups and downs, good days and not so good days, nice people and not so nice people, but there are equisite moments, places and people that make it all worth while.
 

ffp13

Addicted pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
Completed Caminos: 2009 SJPP, 2011 Roncessvalle , 2012 Pamploma, 2013 Roncessvalle, 2013 Porto, 2014 Burgos, 2014 Porto

Future: Roncessvalle
sillydoll said:
When I first walked there in 2002 the annual festival of Passo Honroso was full swing and we thought we were hallucinating when we saw knights in armour on horseback jousting in the fields and ladies in long dresses and high pointed hats daning amongst the colourful tents!

places and people that make it all worth while.

I was about 1 week too soon for that festival, but given that next years start is a little later maybe I will be there at the right time? Do you know what date it is for 2013, never mind I now have the festival name and can google it.

I also remember arriving in a large town during their medieval festival, it was frustrating the church dorms windows were facing the street, sounded like a great street party almost all night and we had a 10 pm curfew:(
 

ffp13

Addicted pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
Completed Caminos: 2009 SJPP, 2011 Roncessvalle , 2012 Pamploma, 2013 Roncessvalle, 2013 Porto, 2014 Burgos, 2014 Porto

Future: Roncessvalle
Passo honrosso is on the first weekend of June , damn it will be early 1&2 June , I don't think I can walk that fast:(
 
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sillydoll

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Take a bus there - spend a day or two and then get a bus back to where you left off! But, book your accommodation ahead of time. Even 10 years ago there were no beds to be had in the village and we ended up paying to sleep on the floor of a house that was being renovated. It had a bathroom and electricity so we were OK.
 

Al the optimist

Veteran Member
I for one am far from perfect, so no criticism intended of any post above. Just to say that I greatly appreciate the vision that created this forum , Ivan, the moderators, the other contributors (especially the more experienced ones) for informing me before my first Caminos and for continuing to help me plan for the future as well as giving me pleasure every day with their on line companionship.
Buen Caminos
allan
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
With planning and a proper, slow pace, you can hit both the chicken festival in Santo Domingo and the jousting in Hospital del Orbigo. Top it off with a queimada from "Hercule" in the albergue at Santibanez del Valdeiglesias.
 

Terrri

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May/June 2013
September/October 2016
September/October 2019
Wow! You get out of things what you put in to them and it appears that you didn't put much effort into your research. You could have avoided all your complaints by doing more research and then possibly you would have chosen a more suitable destination for yourself. If you don't like to research then I don't see how you can complain about an experience that didn't meet your expectations. I believe your comment says more about you than the camino. I hope you enjoy your next trip much better.
 

Grease

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Future plan 2014
Psychopathic Catholics?! :shock:
Hey, nowhere else in any of my researching for my 2013 Camino trip has it been mentioned that there were Psychopathic Catholics on the Camino! I was really bummed that I will probably end up only going from Burgos to SdC… Well if I have to wear a wreath of garlic cloves for the whole trip I’m glad I’m starting in Borgos and not in France… :lol:
Thanks for the heads up Shaman!

I am admittedly one of those people whom upon watching the Way were inspired to do the Camino… Only I have no preconceived notions of anything beyond meeting some interesting people with some possible breaks of solitude…

Regards,
Mike G
 
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capecorps

Member
Hi Shaman,

In retrospect, perhaps it was presumptuous of me to expect a welcoming band, the popping of champagne bottles, congenial fellow pilgrims or at the very least, to be handed a good cigar on my first or even second day.

No…..

I had to wait a while for the band to tune up, the champagne to chill and a few kindred souls to assemble.

And I’ll tell yah, once started, the band never stopped playing, the superb wine flowed and good fellowship was the order of the day for the next forty days.

Never did get my good cigar. Maybe this coming Spring.

Perhaps Sarria to Santiago was too short for the Camino to get its act together for you.
 

ffp13

Addicted pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
Completed Caminos: 2009 SJPP, 2011 Roncessvalle , 2012 Pamploma, 2013 Roncessvalle, 2013 Porto, 2014 Burgos, 2014 Porto

Future: Roncessvalle
Hi,

I totally understand why someone may not enjoy the Camino experience especially starting from Sarria.

I walked my 3rd Camino earlier this year, and because I had unlimited time I made the bad choice to be more casual, that was great for the body and it worked well until around Sarria.

At the start of the Camino people are friendlier and more open to meeting and interacting with strangers, because I had a slower more casual pace and generally walked shorter daily distances most people that I clicked with ended up passing me never to be seen again. But that was ok there were new people each day.

From around Sarria most long distance Camino walkers had formed groups that were resistant to outsiders joining in. And generally it also became a race to get a bed, most of the 100 km walkers were Spanish family groups that rarely mingled with others, ( my fault for not learning Spanish)

When I arrived at Santiago the feeling was flat compared to previous years, I stood in front of the cathedral amongst hundreds of pilgrims, I watched many happy reunions, but it was strange and disappointing not to have anyone that I knew to share the experience with.

If that last 100km was the only Camino experience that I had I would probably feel the same.

PS

Two days later I was in the square when an elderly gentleman gestured to me that we had met near pamplonana, I was sure that I had not, then he said to me that I was walking with an Austrian man with bad blisters, he was right but that was 1 year earlier and he had to stop due to injury, and returned again this year to complete his Camino. I was now happy because I had finally had someone in Santiago to share my experience with.
 

Debinq

Active Member
ah, I think I understand now Sham, one of the reasons you were so disappointed was because there were no "friendly natives" to wash yr clothes for you?
lamentably
Debinq (bwana) 8)
 

kiwiDavid

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2012 - SJPP-Finisterre
Start in St Jean man - from Sarria is not the real deal - get a bit of Meseta in yuh.
Like - you know - 'I'm WALKING here'. kiwiDave
ps:lay off the peyote - it'll make you forget you've got your CAPS on !
 

nellpilgrim

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SDC-Fisterra 08/Camino Frances SJPP to SDC 09/Nuremburg-SDC 11- ongoing
Hi Shaman,
I was so curious about your experience that I read the 17 other posts you made on the forum before starting your journey. In them, amongst other practical enquires which appear were answered to your satisfaction, you enquired what would be a good start point for a 3wk camino and were advised to consider Astorga. So obviously something happened to shorten your available time to a week? That situation can be difficult to manage as the expectations of a longer camino are hard to drop and one (me!) can tend to 'overload' the shorter camino with fairly predictable results. Of course length of journey does not necessarily equate with a better camino experience though I've found my tendency to try and 'manage' does decrease the longer I walk for, and as my expectations shrink the more joyful the overall experience becomes.
Perhaps your background as a therapist proved an unexpected challenge? Maybe you identified and responded to the physical condition of others in a professional manner- and wanting 'to make it better' for them led you to make a professional judgement of them for their 'foolishness' in persevering?
Engaging in a non judgmental way with someone like this and finding out what, for example, sustains a very ordinary, unfit, overweight, middle aged woman to consider (pre The Way!), start and complete such a journey might be revealing. A Camino comprising of such little epiphanies can, if let, build into something so much greater than the sum of it's parts. But I guess accepting such ordinary 'Camino magic' is nearly as bad as having a "Primitive attitude about organised Catholicism" :shock: (and no I'm not going to ask you to 'unpack' that one for me :wink:)
 
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georgia jugs

New Member
We are going on our first cruise in January. I have researched the cruise line, checked the videos on You Tube, learned all about the Bahamas. I know everything about the trip except one thing - will I like cruising? It is not for everybody, will it be for me? I might find people I don't like, places that are not like they appeared in the pictures, food that is not as good as everyone said it would be. Not everything goes as planned or wished for. The bottom line for a cruise or a Camino is 'attitude'. How do I handle the experiences, the good ones and the bad ones? I need only to worry about my wife and myself. Other things can be distractions and can get in the way if you let them. Walk the Camino for yourself, be open to others, but don't let others get you down and ruin your experience.
Anybody could have a bad Camino. Maybe it is important to remember that it is not for everyone, no matter how much you want it to be. What we need is a National Lampoon's Camino Vacation, starring the Griswalds. Then we could see what could go wrong on a Camino.
Now, if the ship doesn't sink.......
 

lizlane

Small Town Girl, Small Town World
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2019
Live and learn. Maybe the psychopathic Catholics and other suffering travelers were onto something. Like the high road. Or the road less traveled. Maybe the people you met along the way were just plain grateful to be there. :!:

For me, the first video I watched online about the Camino after I saw "The Way" was entitled "Not a bed of roses..." It was the first to pop up on my Google search. How you could miss it in your research is beyond me unless you weren't paying attention!

The video is very realistic about the physical dangers, the inability of some to complete it due to lack of proper research, full of warnings about racing through. For me, gears clicked in to place in my soul. My spirit got an immediate tune up from it and has not been the same since. So do I need to go to Spain to have a spiritual experience? Most definitely not. I know how to have them right in my own backyard. Since I have them now, it's likely I will have them there!

There is beauty in suffering and I will be one of those who be grateful for blisters or any other infirmities because it would mean I got them by BEING THERE!
 

Pieces

Veteran Member
for some people the experience may be greater than the pain

for others the continuing in spite of pain might be part of what they need to experience

pain and suffering is a fundamental part of life if one was to stop once things get painful one might never get anywhere...
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
This is a thread that may interest new pilgrims. For some the pilgrimage is the wrong outing!

Shaman has not visited the Forum since November, so addressing him directly will not be productive.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Via de la Plata 2010, Camino de Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo 2013, Olvidado, Invierno 2014
:lol: :lol: :lol:
Thank you for bumping this thread.
The thread start is wonderful. In caps!
I can't stop laughing.
 
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Daxzentzu

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
FRANCES (2018) in planning
If I had been blessed with more time when i was younger then I would have taken the way of St James much earlier.

But thats my journey!

Also the concept of 'doing' the camino doesn't work for me - I see comments, sometimes using that expression and it has always made me uncomfortable.

After reflection - it feels, for me, more like 'being the camino' than 'doing the camino'.

So in my mind there is no good or bad camino.

Just the camino

Dax
 

Terrri

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May/June 2013
September/October 2016
September/October 2019
My daughter and I walked the camino but had to return early due to my having foot issues caused by improper foot wear.

I walked just over 200km and my daughter almost walked 300km but since we started in St Jean and not Sarria we missed all the over crowding that is usually associated with starting in Sarria. I realized that if we had started in Sarria we would have also gone on to finestere. We didn't get a compostella but that was never our goal. We ran into a huge variety of people that I am sure are the same variety every where but we choose who to ignore and who to associate with based on our needs and what we wanted out of this journey.

I have no regrets as we entered in to this with open eyes and open minds.
 

Olivares

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May 1997 (Leon to Santiago); Sections Camino Frances: May 2011, May 2012, May 2013, October 2013, June-July 2014 (Sahagun to Santiago).
I know Shaman is gone, but here is what I would say to him:

I am very glad you posted your views. I love to learned about different points of view.
Most of what you posted is nowhere near my personal experience, but some of it it was. I love the Camino de Santiago regardless of who speaks to me, what meal is placed in front of me, and how many people run by me. MY Camino is not about that nor about them.

Go to Katmandu and have a blessed experience. Keep it real. :wink:
 

Kimmy

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF summer-06, SJPP to Burgos Sept-13, Burgos to Astorga Sept-14 (Astorga to Santiago de Compostela sept 15)
Shaman is obviously not on the forum anymore, but I just want to say that I can so understand how one can have a bad camino when starting from Sarria. It must be a strange feeling to see all the people who started weeks or even months ago who think the camino turned into a circus and just want to race the last bit. And most old timers formed into groups, maybe not so willing to let new people in. Also focus for the old timers would by this time be Santiago and get away from all newbies. And then there would be all the newcomers - students, families, groups of friends, people making the last phase of their divided caminos, and then the ones who just had time to do a short camino or just wanting a compostela certificate.

I remember that our little loose formed group decided to race the last bit since we felt that lots of the camino energy was washed away among all those new people. If I was one of the new ones I would probably also think there were maniacs walking 40 km a day, not wanting to make any new friends, and then on the other end school groups walking in flip-flops...
 

carriedavey

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
April/May 2013
An interesting thread. Shaman was pretty emphatic (to say the least) in his criticisms of the Camino, but (as has been said) has every right to express those views on an open forum. Carol and I completed our Camino on May 21st. I found the "perceived and romanticised Camino" to be very different to the reality. However, I have nothing but admiration for those who complete such a journey. I won't do another one, but more power to those who do! (and GOOD LUCK!)
 
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