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Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Future (God-willing): Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo (2018)
#1
Two weeks ago I was excited that friends had asked us to do a camino with them next year. While my excitement was tinged with a little sadness (I'd been dreaming of how to pull off a solo camino), it was overwhelmingly wonderful to think we might walk SOMEWHERE.
My practical husband pointed out after a couple of days that these friends may have been being polite;-)
Last night we all met again and I had decided to not mention the camino. I didn't need to. They did! I asked them directly if they were actually interested and plans are underway!
They are committed to only having four weeks, they are quite keen to have a few days in Madrid as they have never been there, and they love our pictures of the Salvador and Primitivo routes but would not want to walk it as fast as I did with the kids last time! It seems we could do just the Primitivo slowly in about 17 or 18 days, which would give them time to spend in Madrid and travel to and from NZ (that swallows four days!)
Our family is not limited to their time frame so we could start a week earlier and do the San Salvador together and have an extra day or two in Leon as well before our friends arrive.
Then my wee mind got racing.
The fact that we might not travel together, made me remember that my hubby said he LOVED travelling on his own without kids when he went back from our 2014 camino (he left before the rest of us)....and I thought I could tell him that I have not experienced this wonder of the world yet and maybe it's time for me to.....what if I go up two weeks before he and the kids and I'd walk straight out of Madrid airport and meet them in Leon. Isn't that a wonderfully fantabulous suggestion? (oh, I know it's outrageous, ludicrous, unthinkable...but I'm going to see if I can make it happen!)
That solo camino just might be happening before I expected. I could never take off for a month on my own - well not at this stage of parenting, and going for two weeks is not fiscally sensible, but I could conceivably tack two weeks on to a longer trip.
I'm naturally a very quiet reserved not LOL-kind-of-person, but I am going SQUEEEE inside right now!
 

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C clearly

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
#3
Sounds like a perfect opportunity! Go for It!
 

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Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-18
#6
Opportunities like this come along for a reason, so take it.
 

NualaOC

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés, Inglés, Finisterre/Muxia, Baztanés x2, Primitivo, Norte and hopefully many more.
#7
This is your chance ...... make it happen, Rachael!
 

VNwalking

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2014, 2015)
St Olav/Francés (2016)
Baztanés/Francés (2017)
Ingles (July 2018)
#8
Grand idea! Now comes the diplomacy of making it happen.:cool:
Buen (solo and group) camino!
 

Aidan21

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP to Burgos 2013
Burgos to SDC 2014
Sarria to SDC 2016
SJPP to SDC 2016
Porto to SDC 2017
#9
There are many ways to walk the Camino. No one way is better or worse than any other. I have walked alone and with others. Both are wonderful. However if I had to choose, I would walk alone. Why? I guess it is the fantastic sense of freedom. The day is yours and whatever you wish to make of it. There are no obligations on you other than to walk and find a bed. If you can, experience this freedom and saviour it until you can do it again sometime in the future. Buen Camino.
Aidan
 

Robo

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
Alone.
------------------------------
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
with my wife Pat.
------------------------------
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
together again :-)
#10
Sounds like a great plan!
 

FrankieBallz

Wandering; Not lost.
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances & Camino Ingles -- Oct./Nov. 2016
#11
I agree with others; Go for it. Walking alone will make it seem like a totally different Camino. May take a couple of days to realize the only voice is yours. Alone, but not lonely. Also, no fear. Faith always plays a bigger role when you realize it's just you in a real big theatre. It can become addictive though. I interacted with more pilgrims and natives than I can possibly remember, but I walked alone, almost always. I haven't been able to reach those places in my mind since I left. Best of luck to you for a safe journey.
 
Camino(s) past & future
going in april 2018
#12
I can not understand your thoughts about not going alone ... but feel your heart
ciao
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Donating Member
#13
Rachel, great idea! I think you will love the solitary Madrid, all alone, and then combining it with the family for the less solitary Salvador and ending with family and friends on the bustling Primitivo sounds like a perfect three part dream camino. Now about that idea to walk directly out of the Madrid airport......
 

williamlittig

Active Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013 Camino Frances SJPP / 2014 Camino Portugues / 2015 Camino Ingles / 2015 Hospitalero Training
2016 (fall) Camino Sanabre / Hospitalero?
#14
Ultreya !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

fraluchi

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
One every year since 2007
#16
[...]....what if I go up two weeks before he and the kids and I'd walk straight out of Madrid airport and meet them in Leon. Isn't that a wonderfully fantabulous suggestion? (oh, I know it's outrageous, ludicrous, unthinkable...but I'm going to see if I can make it happen!)[...]
To me this doesn't appear to be extremely "extravagant", considering your many walks during past years, including various Caminos. Annakappa would call this a "time off" Camino, and selfishly (though we walked 7 Caminos together) I would love to do a similar trek on my own.
Go ahead and enjoy the planning, as well as the realization of your well-founded dream.;)
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Future (God-willing): Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo (2018)
#17
I can not understand your thoughts about not going alone ... but feel your heart
ciao
Thank you Jomas. I have read so much here about solo Caminos that the idea quite appeals. I have loved all my Caminos with family, but am intrigued to try one alone. That’s all ;-)
Rachel, great idea! I think you will love the solitary Madrid, all alone, and then combining it with the family for the less solitary Salvador and ending with family and friends on the bustling Primitivo sounds like a perfect three part dream camino.
That is exactly my thinking! In fact, my spreadsheet is headed up “2018: A Camino in Three Parts”!
How bustling will the Primitivo be in late October? That’s our ideal time, but I’m aware a group of nine is quite big!
Now about that idea to walk directly out of the Madrid airport......
Laurie I respect your opinion too much to not listen, so please expand. According to google maps Tres Cantos is 32km from Barajas....if I arrive at 8am.......no???
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Donating Member
#18
please expand. According to google maps Tres Cantos is 32km from Barajas....if I arrive at 8am.......no???
Oh, I will always give my opinion whether anyone is listening or not! I know the airport area pretty well and it is hard for me to imagine that there is a nice and safe walking trail to get you to Tres Cantos. I admit I have never been looking for a walking route there, so it may be there and I have never seen it. If you put the "walking option" into google maps, it takes you looping through San Sebastián de los Reyes and then over to Tres Cantos. That would be a totally off-camino walk, because the camino goes through Fuencarral and then close to El Pardo.

Other downsides -- then you don't get to start your camino at the Iglesia de San Juan and Santiago in historic old Madrid, amble up the Castellana and to the Plaza Castilla, under the M-30 or 40 and then presto in the countryside.

If I were arriving at 8 am, I would make my way downtown via Cercanías to Puerta del Sol, walk over to the church, get a stamp hopefully, and then mosey on up through Madrid. It can be a pretty walk up to Plaza Castilla, where the arrows are (though I think someone has said the first arrows are no longer in front of the Rodillas sandwich shop). It is true that you then have to find a place to stay and that is a pretty expensive area, but what I had thought I would do if I ever did this again was to walk to Plaza Castilla, take a metro to where the Korean albergue is, stay there (relatively close to Plaza Castilla) and then carry on from there the next day. It would mean that either you would have a very short day to Tres Cantos, or could carry on to Colmenar el Viejo, which is what I did, but the option there is private accommodation.

I have a vague memory that someone has walked from the airport, though, so I am going to search and see what I can find. Does anyone remember a thread about walking from Barajas?
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Donating Member
#19

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Future (God-willing): Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo (2018)
#20
Thanks @peregrina2000 - you’re a gem.
I didn’t know about the Korean albergue - plenty of time for detailed research!
 

sharon w

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2007
Camino Portugues 2009
Via Podiensis, Camino Frances, Camino Finisterre 2012
Cammino di Assisi 2014
Via Podiensis, Camino del Norte, Camino Frances(Astorga to Santiago) 2015
Aussie Camino 2016
#21
Will be looking forward to reading your posts. Also want to do this route. Happy planning.
 

PEI_Heather

Canadian Member :)
Camino(s) past & future
2016 - Voie de la Nive
2012, 2016 - Frances
2013 - Portuguese
2012, 2013 - Finesterre & Muxia
#22
You can walk forwards, you can walk backwards, you can skip, you can dance, you can walk like John Cleese in the Ministry of Silly Walks...you can do all this as a solo waker and not have to worry about bumping into or tripping over anyone you may have walked with!

You can also sing as loud or as long as you want, and whatever song you love... you can mull over the problem of the day: cafe con leche OR chocolate caliente... you can debate with yourself, you can pontificate to the birds and trees that you see with your own eyes, you can shout to the sky and the clouds without bothering anyone, all as a solo walker...

You can buy some grapes or...AND a giant chocolate bar and eat them all yourself! No need to share as a solo walker (unless you want to)...you can be greedy this time and fill your own wants and desires, as a solo walker!

You can look after only your own feet, do your own laundry, tie your own footwear, and wear your own socks, if you've found yourself sharing before, as a solo walker.

You can dine by yourself, with yourself as your own interesting and enjoyable companion... Have a sip, no a glass, of wine and toast yourself for walking a glorious solo walk, by yourself, with no one else, alone (but not lonely, nope nope nope)!
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Future (God-willing): Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo (2018)
#26
...and at the end of your Camino Madrid, you can stay over at Peaceable Kingdom in Moratinos!
I was plotting some stages today and considering I always walk further than my plan......and wondering what to do if I was going to end up in Leon before the rest of the family.....and had decided a detour to Moratinos would be just the thing. Then I thought you might think that was weird! But now I’m invited it feels like another Grand Possibility. Thank you!
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid.
#27
@Kiwi-family - Rachael, I'm just back from doing the Madrid, and I loved it. The enjoyment was influenced by the terrific little community of fellow walkers - I expected to be quite alone, but on the third night ran into five other pilgrims and we became a great little group. Don't count on it, the albergues told us it was unusual, there had been no-one before us for days, and I don't think there was anyone following.

Like you I was filled with the romantic idea of walking straight out of the airport. In practice I found it just too hard to circumvent all the freeways that ring the airport, and I caught a train into the city. I went to the Church of Santiago and San Juan Bautista (I think that is the correct name), in old Madrid, and started walking from there.

I used @JohnnieWalker's CSJ guide to the Madrid, downloaded onto my smartphone. A couple of updates needed - the two youth hostels in Cercedilla seem only to be open in the middle of the summer. We contacted the police who arranged for us to sleep on gym mats in the Desportivo building. The downside is that the showers are locked off separately. The person who let us into the building was gracious enough to give us ten minutes to use the showers, but don't count on it.

Also take food with you before you get to Santevás de Campos, from Cuenca or Villerón, and try to make it something you don't have to cook! The kitchen in the albergue at Santevás is locked off and not available to pilgrims. The bar in Santevás next to the albergue is supposed to provide food, but on the day we were in Santevás it was not open. There was no food to be had anywhere, no shops, nor is there anything in the next village (Arenillas). We were rescued by Rebekah's husband and friend, who drove us to a side village for a meal.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Donating Member
#28
Sorry to throw in an off-topic comment, but I'm sure Rachel won't mind -- GREAT to see you back, Kanga!!! So glad your most recent camino was a delight and that your feet treated you nicely!
 

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