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Opinion on Son walking the Camino

Anto

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
September 2017 SJPDP to Pamplona
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
 
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Helen1

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
London to Santiago (2014)
Narbonne to Oloron (2015)
Camino Portugues (2016)
Sentier Cathar (2017)
Interesting question and probably impossible to answer but I think your concern is valid. I am not old or young but in my very limited experience younger men/women tend not to be as enamoured with the camino experience/find the experience as profound as people on this forum. Leaving aside those walking for purely religious reasons, or those walking for a reason like breakup, loss, change of direction, depression, etc. who want to take timeout to think about the future I have heard some pretty ‘meh’ type comments from youngsters on my trips.

I think opportunity cost factors into these comments. Is walking the camino the type of experience your son wants given all the other things he could do with his time? A month walking in rural Spain or a month seeing the cities of Europe, or hiking to Everest basecamp, or learning to surf in Australia, or working as a volunteer in a remote community, or 101 other things?
 

Kimtom

Wannawalk
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances on bike (2014)
Frances on foot (2019)
Frances on foot (2020)
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I have a friend from the Camino who has walked it every year since he was 12. He’s now nearing his mid twenties. I met another guy in his twenties who was walking for the first time and had dreamed of doing so since he was 9.
I’ve enjoyed the company of and conversations with so many people of all ages on the Camino.
The Camino speaks to a persons soul, and the soul is ageless. The Camino is a wonderful blessing for all who are drawn to it.
 

SabineP

Camino = Gratitude + Compassion.
Year of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.

FWIW I personally do not believe that there are certain personality traits that make it easier " to get / understand a Camino ". Life experience can or can not be a help when doing a pilgrimage. I guess having an open mind, being gentle and showing compassion towards others and yourself is more important. I know lots of twenty year olds having more insight in life than some fifty plussers.

Beneficial? Does a Camino have to be that? I doubt it. Sometimes you just walk for the joy of walking. I know that this was my feeling when I finished my first Camino when I was 41.
 
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Flogwail

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020
I guess having an open mind, being gentle and showing compassion towards others and yourself is more important. I know lots of twenty year olds having more insight in life than some fifty plussers.

Beneficial? Does a Camino have to be that? I doubt it. Sometimes you just walk for the joy of walking.
I would agree. My son has walked twice with me and once on his own. He isn't 'addicted' in the way I am, but totally understands and respects what I get from it.
 
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John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I think it will be a good thing for a young person to walk. There are many lessons on the Camino which can make a life-difference. But some mental preparation for the walk would be good, also. Much of that can be found on this very Forum.

I am now 67, but not done yet: There are more Caminos in me, thankfully. 9 years ago I walked for several days with a 24-year old boy. We still have contact. The Camino changed his life, attitude & perspective in so many ways, for the good.

It all depends on the person. If getting a larger perspective on life, it can be a lifechanger, for the better of it. Much of it is about perspective on (one's) life. Given a good Camino experience, it may mean taking a new approach to life, one's values, and the way forward in life. Maybe for a better one, before it is a bit late.

I did my first Camino at the age of 55. I wish I had done it much earlier. I would have been a wiser man at a younger age, and everyone, myself included, would have benefitted from it. But all this is just my personal opinion, of course.

Do not underestimate your son (young people): Luckily, for the future of the world, they grow smarter by every generation. The proof lies in the behaviour of our own, and past, generation(s). A Camino is a great eyeopener for one's (hopefully better) future.
 
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Anto

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
September 2017 SJPDP to Pamplona
Thanks for the input all,
guess I should have said my son is in his mid 20's .
I agree SabinaP that there are probably not personality types that suit the Camino ,don't think generally you can box people in to "Personality types" suppose I did use the words" personality traits ",was thinking maybe more in terms life experience.
I know its possibly different for everyone I guess I just felt the experience of the camino allowed me to process a lot of the events of my life in a way that made sense
 

hel&scott

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2004 St Jean - Santiago, 2008 &18 Seville - Finesterre, 2010 Ferrol - Lisbon, 2012 from Cartehenga.
Our three adult children have all walked their own caminos, and got it to various degrees.

My daughter first cycled the French route in her early 20s shortly after we walked it. What she got from that, was that is should be walked. So she and I walked from Ferrol to Santiago and on to Lisbon, what she got from that was you shouldn't walk long distances in winter... and we got to know more about each other so I guess she got me.

Scotts daughter walked from Sarria with friends, she spoke with a lot of pilgrims and got a range of reasons and feelings from her short walk.

Scotts son, walked the French route shortly after his dad died. He couldn't understand why Scott wanted his ashes taken to Spain when he started, but got it when he stood on the headland at Finisterre.

We all walked different routes to Santigao and met up to carry his ashes onto the cape and each of the kids got time to reflect on the meaning of life, death and walking. I don't know how much of that was due to being in Spain on a Camino, and how much was due to the reason of why they were there. Having pulled my archillies I wasn't able to walk the last section so got to watch them leave Santiago in the early morning gloom with Scott tucked up safely in a back pack. On those three days while I bused my way to the end, our three young adults got on with it, they told Scott stories and shared Camino experiences and got more out of it then anyone could expect.

I guess what I am trying to say, is your kids will get there own thing out of it, there isn't one lesson or experience to get out of a Camino, it's as individual as the people who walk it.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
Thanks for the input all,
guess I should have said my son is in his mid 20's .
I agree SabinaP that there are probably not personality types that suit the Camino ,don't think generally you can box people in to "Personality types" suppose I did use the words" personality traits ",was thinking maybe more in terms life experience.
I know its possibly different for everyone I guess I just felt the experience of the camino allowed me to process a lot of the events of my life in a way that made sense
A favorite of mine, stated by Mark Twain::

Good decisions come from experience.
Experience comes from making bad decisions.

Send your son to the Camino :)
 
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Aidan21

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPP to SDC 2013/14
SJPP to SDC 2016
Porto to SDC 2017
VdlP Sevilla/Salamanca 2018
Suggest, encourage, help, lead by example; if his soul is so inclined he will go and he will get something from the experience. It does not matter when he goes. As Kimtom above says the soul is ageless.

I hope he goes!!
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
Assuming the son is an adult - let him decide!

Absolutely. Once you get to your mid-20’s it’s time your parents stopped thinking they should decide what’s good for you.

To a significant proportion, that which some of us are prone to describing in near-mystical terms is just a cheap walking holiday. Let’s keep it in perspective.

I also suspect that the average age of those frequenting these forums, especially in 20/21; is rather older than the average to be found in the Camino.
 
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John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.

Honestly, I think it is populated with retirees largely as a consequence of foreign — mostly UK colonies or former colonies — pilgrims not having the time (perhaps the money) prior to retirement. There are *plenty* of young Europeans on the camino.
On my first camino I was 47, on sabbatical so I had time and my son was an adult by then, so off I went. I was surrounded mostly by retirees (almost all school teachers who explained that they had never had an unstructured September before in their lives so...) and was content to walk with them, but up until about Puenta La Reina the young people kept trying to get me to stay out with them. I generally appear to be about 10 years younger than I am... so finally I had to say “Sorry kids. I’m old enough and tired enough to be mother to most of you, and don’t want to have to worry about you.”
I saw most of them again in Santiago and they had all appreciated the journey.
I sent a grad student of mine in between her MA and her PhD — in her mid 20’s I guess. And it allowed her time she really needed.
I’ve encouraged several other young people to go.
I don’t think our young people are less able to appreciate it than the Europeans; I just think fewer get the chance.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
Honestly, I think it is populated with retirees largely as a consequence of foreign — mostly UK colonies or former colonies — pilgrims not having the time (perhaps the money) prior to retirement. There are *plenty* of young Europeans on the camino.
On my first camino I was 47, on sabbatical so I had time and my son was an adult by then, so off I went. I was surrounded mostly by retirees (almost all school teachers who explained that they had never had an unstructured September before in their lives so...) and was content to walk with them, but up until about Puenta La Reina the young people kept trying to get me to stay out with them. I generally appear to be about 10 years younger than I am... so finally I had to say “Sorry kids. I’m old enough and tired enough to be mother to most of you, and don’t want to have to worry about you.”
I saw most of them again in Santiago and they had all appreciated the journey.
I sent a grad student of mine in between her MA and her PhD — in her mid 20’s I guess. And it allowed her time she really needed.
I’ve encouraged several other young people to go.
I don’t think our young people are less able to appreciate it than the Europeans; I just think fewer get the chance.
‘mostly UK colonies or former colonies’

Even if one includes the US in that, I don’t think that’s right. There some good stats on the nationalities on the Frances on here somewhere and I’m fairly certain that Spanish nationals top the list by quite some way.

Despite the best efforts of former generations, the brits haven’t yet colonised Spain - except arguably Gibraltar, and possibly the Costa del Sol by stealth but my Spanish friends find it difficult to square their objection to Gib with their remaining north-African possessions.

The UK doesn’t currently have any colonies.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
‘mostly UK colonies or former colonies’

Even if one includes the US in that, I don’t think that’s right. There some good stats on the nationalities on the Frances on here somewhere and I’m fairly certain that Spanish nationals top the list by quite some way.

Despite the best efforts of former generations, the brits haven’t yet colonised Spain - except arguably Gibraltar, and possibly the Costa del Sol by stealth but my Spanish friends find it difficult to square their objection to Gib with their remaining north-African possessions.

The UK doesn’t currently have any colonies.

Fine: the “commonwealth” nations, but I don’t know if that has much meaning to people who don’t live in one.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
‘mostly UK colonies or former colonies’

Even if one includes the US in that, I don’t think that’s right. There some good stats on the nationalities on the Frances on here somewhere and I’m fairly certain that Spanish nationals top the list by quite some way.

Despite the best efforts of former generations, the brits haven’t yet colonised Spain - except arguably Gibraltar, and possibly the Costa del Sol by stealth but my Spanish friends find it difficult to square their objection to Gib with their remaining north-African possessions.

The UK doesn’t currently have any colonies.
Also, I think you’ve misunderstood my point — which is that the retirees that populate the camino are not generally the Europeans who populate the camino, many, many of whom are young. I did not mean that this population dominates the camino. One can get the impression that retirees fill it up simply because older people tend to stick together *and* there tends to be a lingua franca therein that is English.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I am the mother of two sons, both who are well into adulthood. One son is single and has accompanied me on four Caminos and has seen himself as a protector of his mother. He has enjoyed the experiences as he loves nature, but has no passion for it as he prefers wilderness backpacking and he has no desire to be a part of this forum or watching Camino videos.
My other son and his wife accompanied me on one of my Caminos. They travel often, far and wide, and asked to come along as they saw my continuing enthusiasm for walking the pilgrimage trails in Spain. They too, appreciated the experience, but saw it as one of the many traveling adventures they enjoy. They determined to walk every step of the Camino Frances, which we did, although they suffered shin splints, and blisters. Upon completion in Santiago, my son commented, "You know Mom, a person could drive a car the whole way from beginning to end." I would never want to do that because it's the walking of it that I love.
So, neither of my boys have come to love the Camino with the same passion that I have, and that's ok...we are all different.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Ingles 2018
I can only speak from the memory of who I was in my early/mid 20s and that was a backpacker. Personally I believe as a younger person this is more appealing than the Camino at that stage in life being surrounded by your own age group.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I have taken 2 others on the Camino, my husband who is 3 years older then me, and my 13 year old grandson.
They went at my suggestion (insistence) - neither would have gone on their own, not 'walkers' the way I am. In fact I had to persuade my husband - so I guess it could have gone either way. It had been such a profound experience for me in so many ways I was sure it would be for them too.
I am quite different from both of them, being more into solitary sports like distance walking etc then organized team sports which they love - and in fact being more into solitary for everything - not a crowds person.
I also hadn't taken into consideration that we are different personalities when it comes to holidays, me preferring a more unplanned approach v my husband requiring a very planned approach. It felt at times as though I had become a tour guide, and I had to be careful not to be resentful about that.

At the time my husband thought he wouldn't walk the Camino again - but a year later is looking forward to another longer walk once travel is possible again. He is looking forward to just the 2 of us. (I was planning to go solo but he actually wants the 2 of us to walk next time)
They both had a great time and often talk about it, but neither of them has become as obsessed about it as I have. I literally think of the Camino every day.
Both say it has changed their outlook though, so that is very fortunate, as the cost and planning for 2 others was considerable and many of my friends thought I was insane for taking a 'kid' - in fact for even thinking of it.

The learning experience for me :
1. Has been that a Camino walked with someone else can take the spontaneity out of my Camino.

2. People have different personalities, and I think I was just lucky the other 2 enjoyed theirs so much. I would always encourage others to walk but wouldn't 'persuade' again.
And definitely not invite them on 'my' Camino.

3. Ive also realised that the enjoyment of walking is something that can come into your life when you are older. I dont mean to say you wont enjoy it when younger - Ive always walked. And there are lots of younger people on the Camino. But many of us who started off life with other sports like running etc, turn to walking as a 'replacement ' for the rougher and more energetic sports we enjoyed when we were younger. Coming from a family of runners and sports people, pretty much everyone has eventually turned to walking as being more sustainable - injured knees, ankles. feet etc. For all of us it has taken a period of time to think of walking as a legitimate exercise in itself, as opposed to something you did because you couldn't run.

4. Its not for everyone, I did see people on the Camino who didnt look as though they enjoyed the walking, some looked miserable and I think they were relieved when they reached their destination each night. It was often the only time they looked as though they might be enjoying it.

5.Those of us on this forum will likely trend to the obsession end of the scale.
 
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Anamya

Keeping it simple
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015)
Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (2019)
I know its possibly different for everyone I guess I just felt the experience of the camino allowed me to process a lot of the events of my life in a way that made sense
And when it happens earlier in life, it will allow you to process a lot of events that will happen in the future under a new perspective :)

I walked my first camino at an age closer to your son than to yours. I'm glad I did it quite young - so much unnecessary "life clutter" that I'm not carrying nowadays because I learned a lot of camino lessons. I hope there are still many more opportunities for me to keep learning, no matter at what age :)
 

Devon Mike

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, Finisterre & Muxia (2014, 2015, 2016, 2018 & 2019), Primitivo & Ingles (2017)
I have walked several times on my own. 3 days after one of my sons was 16 we left home and travelled to walk the Camino Frances. We walked together from St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago and walked on to Finesterre and finally to Muxia. He loved it including staying in Albergues and enjoying all the different foods.
 
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RRat

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Planning 2017
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
Just like at home your son will get tired of the same stories you tell and gradually walk with other young people. At the end of the day hanging out with him and his new friends you will have a new audience for those same old stories. My sons have assigned numbers to my lectures and reminisces so they don't have to listen to them. They are brats but you got to love them
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I think it may be just as likely that a young person would "get it" as an older person. I think for many younger people they are just starting or are in the early stages of their careers/life choices. The enthusiasm that they have for this would most likely supersede their possible desire to walk the Camino. I have a feeling there are less younger people who are as aware of the Camino as older people. But of course these are all assumptions.
Having said that I bet you have as well as probably everyone else met lots and lots of wonderful young people walking the Camino. I have met a good number on the Frances. I have to say when I walked from Le Puy the only young person I met was my young friend I had met on the CF a few years earlier. But I doubt I met more than a handful of people on that Camino who wasn't retired. There were few on the Portuguese from Lisbon. As we got closer there were more but not too many.
A complete reversal was when I walked the Norte. I think there were more people under about 30-35 than any other group. Just fabulous young people. Caring and thoughtful and funny and generous. I lost them all when we got to the Primitivo split as they all went on the Primitivo and I stayed on the Norte. Thankfully I met up with alot of them when the Norte connected to the CF in Arzua and into Santiago.
 

MichaelB10398

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Le Puy to Santiago de Compostela, Lourdes to SdC, SJPP to SdC
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
The Camino calls out to whomever she chooses regardless of age.

In the case of your son, the fact that you share your experiences with him is what is important. Should the Camino beckon to him, then he will choose to go...or not. It is a matter of his choice and his timing.

My thoughts are that you should neither fear nor be anxious over this matter. You are not responsible or in charge of an outcome or a positive experience or a negative experience. I have found that we all have our individual perspectives. I think we could each walk through a glorious day and some would find it to be glorious while others would find it rather dull. It all depends on where our head is occupied at the time.

We are responsible for being the best individual, son, father, husband, or friend we can be. It is best when we allow others the same freedom to choose. Let the Camino be the Camino without projecting any expectations for others.

I am confident that you have raised a fine, young man. When, and if, the Camino calls to him he will find a unique experience all his own. God bless him and you both.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
You don't say what the age of your son is.

Personally, I've met a lot of people who are much younger than retirement who seemed to "get it" and heard them interviewed on podcasts.

For what it is worth, I walked with my son when he was sixteen. At the end of the Camino his attitude was "never again". Six months later, it started to change. I was talking with the family about walking another Camino in a couple of years when I retire (also around the time when he will be finishing university). He said he'd be happy to walk with me again. I should mention that walking the Camino was his idea. I had promised him a trip when he was sixteen and he chose to make it a Camino. What does your son think of walking the Camino?

I have also read a number of people who regretted putting off their first Camino until they were later on in years. All those years they could have been walking Caminos....
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
I have also read a number of people who regretted putting off their first Camino until they were later on in years. All those years they could have been walking Caminos....
That's me.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I was quite lucky in that as soon as I heard about the Camino from the movie "The Way", I opted for early retirement and within six months I was on MY way!
 

ukjohn99

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2009 St Jean to Santiago
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I met people of all ages and abilities on the Camino. I was in my sixties at the time but I was mainly walking with people in their twenties and one nineteen year old. He and I gelled very well and we helped each other. He was the pace maker and I was more confident so it worked well. Early on, there were three young women who really set the pace and I found that helpful. I'm sure that your son will be fine. Friendships are made along the way and mostly everyone is helpful and supportive.
 
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Felipe

Veteran Member
The Camino is great, but not for everybody. As a friend told me "Why walk, when we have invented cars, buses and planes?"
My son (then 20 years old) walked with me the Camino. To him, it was a great experience and remains a much cherished memory, but he has no intention to come back. He moved to other interests, and that is right.
I sometimes mention briefly he Camino in casual conversations with friend or relatives, when the "travel" or "experiences" topic comes naturally. If a person seems interested, I offer that they contact me, if they wish, for additional information. If not, I don't insist. You don't know if it is real interest, or just polite small talk.
 

kleckam

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances April '12, May '18
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
Anto - My daughter walked the full Camino Frances in '12 at the age of 27, and again in '18. She gets it, and so will your son. Ultreia!
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
What is the "it" that we are referring to? Other than my 2nd Camino in 2019 - Porto to Santiago, my Caminos have lasted at least a month. I wonder if those who walk shorter Caminos, or walk in 1-2 week stages each year get the same "it" that I got. I don't think that my "it" is better than others' "it," just different.
 

SabineP

Camino = Gratitude + Compassion.
Year of past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
What is the "it" that we are referring to? Other than my 2nd Camino in 2019 - Porto to Santiago, my Caminos have lasted at least a month. I wonder if those who walk shorter Caminos, or walk in 1-2 week stages each year get the same "it" that I got. I don't think that my "it" is better than others' "it," just different.

Can only speak for myself ( and my first Camino was the Francès from Roncesvalles to SdC ) but I also walked twice the Inglès and one time I only walked from SdC to Finisterre and with all three of them I found a " Caminofeeling " from day one.
But I understand what you say with the " different " it. And of course I'm ( or was, seeing Covid now ) in a luxurious position to be able to take a high speed train or flight and be in Spain in ten hours time.

And a general note to @kleckam : there is no such thing as a " full " Camino. The start from Saint-Jean -Pied-De-Port is a " recent " invention seeing pilgrims from earlier times came on foot from home, wherever and how far that was....
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I hear ya, @trecile, but I love the longevity of "it"...always six weeks away for me. I'm sure if I lived in the EU/UK I would be happy to do sections if I was still working and younger....we take what we have opportunity to get.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
What is the "it" that we are referring to? Other than my 2nd Camino in 2019 - Porto to Santiago, my Caminos have lasted at least a month. I wonder if those who walk shorter Caminos, or walk in 1-2 week stages each year get the same "it" that I got. I don't think that my "it" is better than others' "it," just different.
Now this could be a whole other thread (and has been, many times - here's one example: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/com...s-the-spirit-of-the-camino-mean-to-you.68636/).
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Now this could be a whole other thread (and has been, many times - here's one example: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/com...s-the-spirit-of-the-camino-mean-to-you.68636/).
Exactly. That's why I don't think that we should be concerned about someone getting "it," because "it" comes in many varieties, and often can't be described.

hear ya, @trecile, but I love the longevity of "it"...always six weeks away for me.

Me too. I feel different after two weeks on the Camino than I did after one week, and even more so after a month. Should I tell everyone that they must walk for at least a month to get "it"? Obviously not. And someone who has walked for 3 months will get a different "it" than I do.
Vive la différence!
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
In my fantasies I begin from Cashel (where we have family buried on the mount), make my way to Canterbury, walk all the way to Rome, and then hope a train to LePuy and walk to Saint-Jean... where I take a train to Hendaye and walk from Hendaye to the Primitivo and then take that into SdC.

I think it would take half a year and I do not think I will have that kind of stamina when I retire...

But even if I can someday do this ... I want to echo others here... @trecile and @David Tallan in particular... that such a long journey would not give me a better "it" than anyone else's "it" (oh, that black box, 'it'!) -- I just happen to be in love with seeing countries and their regions at the ground level where the inhabitants are.

I do not love luxury hotels (I do love a place with clean towels and a bathtub about every 10 days), and I prefer to stay in and experience a more everyday "life world" for where I am. I do not find my own company either tedious or fascinating, but I also really do not seek a "camino family" or a mobile summer camp experience. Others are free to pursue all their own ways (barring imposing obnoxious demands on the poor locals)....

I have no idea really what "it" will be for anyone else, and I don't think age figures in the deal. The church requires only that a child be able to understand the basic concepts to allow first communion -- and those are some pretty profound basic concepts. But surely if the church trusts 7-year-olds with the matter we can trust young adults with their own philosophical journeys?
 
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nycwalking

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Ourense to Santiago (2019), CF: (2014, 2004, 2002, 2001). On to Fisterra, (2002, 4, 14).
I walked my first camino at 39, neither young nor old.

I fell in love. I fell in love with Spain, pilgrimage, refugios, and life lived out of a backpack.

I walked along with my Lozano guidebook in hand. That guidebook offered historical tidbits about the Way in addition to practical information concerning stages, refugios, and other pertinent matters.

Age isn’t a reflection of who will or won’t enjoy the path.

Only by venturing on the way will someone discover: miracles, life-altering experiences, daily pub crawls, deep spirituality, all the aforementioned, or nothing much at all.

Buen camino to you both as soon as possible.
 

MichaelB10398

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Le Puy to Santiago de Compostela, Lourdes to SdC, SJPP to SdC
Exactly. That's why I don't think that we should be concerned about someone getting "it," because "it" comes in many varieties, and often can't be described.



Me too. I feel different after two weeks on the Camino than I did after one week, and even more so after a month. Should I tell everyone that they must walk for at least a month to get "it"? Obviously not. And someone who has walked for 3 months will get a different "it" than I do.
Vive la différence!
I thought the context of this "it" is just a love of the Camino. Some walk the Camino without leaving any degree of impact or long term appreciation. Others walk it and it becomes a passion.

I did not see or detect any degree of judgment, but a desire that a loved one would find the same passion. I could be wrong, but that is what I thought Anto, the writer of the first entry, was talking about.
 
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David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
In my fantasies I begin from Cashel (where we have family buried on the mount), make my way to Canterbury, walk all the way to Rome, and then hope a train to LePuy and walk to Saint-Jean... where I take a train to Hendaye and walk from Hendaye to the Primitivo and then take that into SdC.

I think it would take half a year and I do not think I will have that kind of stamina when I retire...
For those of us outside of Europe, it isn't just a case of stamina, it is the Schengen limits than make any continuous walk of over 3 months not doable in a single go. Maybe our European friends can convince their elected representatives to allow for "pilgrim visas", for those of us who want to do the longer pilgrim walks. For me, I suspect that even just doing the Via Francigena in under 90 days might be pushing it. I could possibly do it, but it doesn't leave much cushion at all.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
For those of us outside of Europe, it isn't just a case of stamina, it is the Schengen limits than make any continuous walk of over 3 months not doable in a single go. Maybe our European friends can convince their elected representatives to allow for "pilgrim visas", for those of us who want to do the longer pilgrim walks. For me, I suspect that even just doing the Via Francigena in under 90 days might be pushing it. I could possibly do it, but it doesn't leave much cushion at all.

Oh, yeah! I forgot to mention that I am the happy bearer of Irish citizenship and an EU PP, so... I allow myself the fantasy, even if I might never actually have the time...
 

camino.ninja

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 5 6,16,17,18,19,20
Primiti+Salvador 19
Portug. 17,18,20
Catalan 17
Norte 17
Plata 18
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.

I beleive you can walk the camino in all stages of your life, and get something different from it.
 
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sfdithomas

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2018
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
Different people need to “get” different things. No one is going to have the same experience even if you do it more than once. I wouldn’t worry about it.
 

McGraneC

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
(2016) SdC to Finisterre
(2017) Porto to SdC
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
4 years ago myself and my wife planned to walk a section of the camino. We ended up taking our time on the route to Finnisterre. Our daughters aged 16 & 19 decided to come along and we had so much fun and enjoyment they came with us from Porto the following year. The year after my daughter spent 2 weeks on the Frances with her boyfriend. There is something for every age on the Camino.
 

Vince Rollason

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.

Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
Hi Anto

My son was due to walk my first Camino with me back in 2013 when I was 60 and he was 26. However work situations prevented him so I walked alone and have done on subsequent trips. However I have met up and walked people of all ages and one of the people I got closest to was a young man from South Korea who 25 at the time. On the Camino da Costa I spent time with a lovely Italian couple and a young German man all in their 20s. They all get it, as did my son when he came out and joined me for the final week one time.

Buen Camino

Vince
 

danielle aird

La vie est belle
Year of past OR future Camino
May 2018; September 2018; May 2019; Sept (2019)
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I walked part of it twice with my 21 year old granddaughter. She loved dit. That is why we went the second time. She fell in love with the Camino on Day One. I have just written a book about our adventures. So much fun! I can't wait to go back. Neither can she.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
this will be my first. Norte September 2018.
And when it happens earlier in life, it will allow you to process a lot of events that will happen in the future under a new perspective :)

I walked my first camino at an age closer to your son than to yours. I'm glad I did it quite young - so much unnecessary "life clutter" that I'm not carrying nowadays because I learned a lot of camino lessons. I hope there are still many more opportunities for me to keep learning, no matter at what age :)
This.^. In the US many of us are caught up in the flurry of acquisition and must do’s that we are tendered by advertising. To walk younger shows the lie in that. Even at a later age the lessons are there if you are willing to see. How little all the junk in life matters when all you need is in a back pack and all you have to do is walk and reflect on the space and time this allows you. Just my thoughts..
 
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SteveSherry

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2014,Camino Frances, 2016 Frances, 2018 Francés, 2016/18 Finisterre and Muxia
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
Just do it. My son is now 36 and I’ve walked 2 Caminos with him. On the second one he jumped on board uninvited. If you get on well with your son, this will probably strengthen your bond. Plus you can both deliver ‘ home truths ‘ without too much offence.
 

Lance Chambers

Lance Chambers
Year of past OR future Camino
Sarria (2015), SJPdP (2016), Burgos (2017), SJPdP (2018), Burgos (2019), SJPdP (2020?).
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.

I walked with my daughter in 2018 and she loved every second.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances May 2017
Assuming the son is an adult - let him decide!
Southern Oregon
Pilgrimage: the course of life on Earth
Aug-Sept(2016) SJPDP-Finisterre, July-Aug(2017) SJPDP-Muxia-Finisterre, July-Aug(2018) El Norte - Irun to Vilalba, May-June(2019)Francés, Salvador, Norte, Finisterre, Sept(2019) Porto-Santiago/Finisterre-Muxia

Then what?
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Southern Oregon
Pilgrimage: the course of life on Earth
Aug-Sept(2016) SJPDP-Finisterre, July-Aug(2017) SJPDP-Muxia-Finisterre, July-Aug(2018) El Norte - Irun to Vilalba, May-June(2019)Francés, Salvador, Norte, Finisterre, Sept(2019) Porto-Santiago/Finisterre-Muxia

Then what?
¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Dreaming of many Caminos.
 

Frank Wortley

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
French Caminos - April/May 2013, March/April 2017 and (Sept/Oct 2018)
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I hope to walk with my grandson and daughter when they turn 12. Will they get "it"? I think they will get "it" for them. I hope the journey together will have its own reward as well. I remind myself that we are all different and what speaks to us on our camino is uniquely our and potentially totally different from some others while resonating well with some. I guess that is why we speak of "my" Camino and ask how "your" Camino is going rather than "the" Camino.
Of more concern to me will be their ability to do the distance - but then that would be what constitues "our" Camino.
Can i encourage you to let your son learn what he will learn, and you too.
Buen Camino.

Frank
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
2012-2018 Frances, Via de la Plata, Portugues Central and Seaside, Norte
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I always walk alone, but I have met many young people on the Camino and walked sections or days with them. A couple of years ago I met a young woman from Germany who had hitchhiked all the way from her home to Irun to start the Norte. She says she mostly got rides with long distant truckers. I met many amazing young people who "get it" and I've met older people who don't. I don't think it has much to do with age, but with introspection and sense of adventure.
 

Phoenix

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2014, CF: partial
2016, CF
2018, CF: partial
2019, CP
Hi
Just wondering if anyone has experience of the following.
My wife and I have walked the CF in stages since 2017 and personally I have found it a profound experience.
I have spoken to my oldest son about it and suggested that he should try it sometime as I believe he has the personality traits that would "get it".
My question is this as I am 57 I wonder if I would have "got it" as a younger man or does a level of life experience allow the type of perception that most people who do the camino talk about.
I just observe that most contributers to the forum are retired or nearly retired and have a perspective that I mostly understand.
Suppose my concern is that if a young man(or woman)goes and doesn't get it will it put him off going at a later time in their life when it may be more beneficial.
I walked CF in 2016 (my 2nd) with my son (his first) just after he left the military. I "knew" then that he likely wouldn't "get it" like I did at 50. However, I firmly believed that it would plant a seed of knowledge/understanding that would grow and bloom when the time is appropriate for him and his life circumstances.

In the years since, he has mentioned different aspects of the Camino experience he longs for and tries to incorporate into his life as he ages (e.g., take a long walk when things are stressful, trying to understand others and the journey they are on, etc.). He often speaks of the day he will return to Spain to walk again on his own.
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Life is full of "cudda shudda wouldas" The longer you ruminate on the past the more likely you will stunt your future. I walk most of my pilgrimages alone (meaning no partner to begin with). When I do choose to walk with someone, or they me, the reason we are on Camino usually surfaces. The key is this: The decision to walk the Way should be made without a bunch of preconditions/expectations (other than funding and health of course). Remain open to change, whether physical or mental, press on when it's right and rest when it's needed.
Buen "when you make a mistake, it means you are trying" Camino
Arn
 

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