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second time around

#1
I walked the camino in 2001 and am returning this spring. Thinking back on the first trip it was about managing pain, the language, and learning to walk and pray.. It was also about the people I met along the way. cultural sites and good food took a back seat. this time around I'm traveling with my daughter and I'd like to focus more on the later than the former! Right now I'm researching food and wine. Most of the first walk was Menu del dia, with a few memorable diversions. I'd love to hear from anyone who has been able to delve into the culture, food and wine's a bit... :D
 

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Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#2
May I humbly suggest that you look into the miscellaneous threads, check "Spirits"...it's been a lively and entertaining thread and mouth watering.

I especially like the mention of the "caves" restaurants and the FREE wine bubbling in white and red.

Welcome back to the Milky Way!

Arn
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
Donating Member
#3
I think this is a great idea depending on the time available to you. We all know from the guidebooks there are often detours which are recommended but we never walk the extra 30 k or whatever to visit a place of special interest. I think it would be fab to set out with the intention of taking as much time as necessary to go to these places - on the Camino Frances the detour to San Millan or to one of the homes of plainchant at Santo Domingo de Silos. My notebook from last year on the VdlP has many notes of places "to go back to" at some point in the future.

We know (don't we?) that medieval pilgrims took detours to places with shrines and of special holiness - maybe we should be more relaxed and do the same!
 

Deirdre

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (2007), Camino Francés (2008), Camino Portugués (2010), Camino Aragonés - from Lourdes (2012)
#4
Hi JW,
By the way, sorry you lost your head...oh wait, that wasn't actually you... :)

Your post is quite interesing! I have thought alot about just that. I can only speak for myself, but as I walked over the course of so many days, it did become a "point to point". I saw many interesing things both on my map and in the distance. But on the days where every step was painful and the need to reach a particular place was eminent, there were many interesting places that for a variety of reasons, were simply too "difficult" to visit.

I also found that I shunned the pace of the cities for the quieter places. Of course I visited the Cathedrals in both Burgos y Leon, but never had any intention of remaining in either city. This was rather unusual for me as normally I enjoy visiting cities and all they have to offer. I love Madrid, Valencia, Sevilla, Paris, London and even New York. But for some reason on that journey, cities had little or no value for me.

I took great pleasure in the small cafes and restaurants of the rural towns. I particularly enjoyed the early morning departures through fields and quiet roads (when roads were a necesity) as opposed to the bustle of the city por la madrugada. Perhaps in reflecting upon it, being a Pilgrim decked out in full regalia made one a curiousity in the city - although people clearly knew who you were, what you were and why you were there, they did give a bit of a look. To people hurrying off to work in their suits and dresses pilgrims were an anomoly. When I dropped my pack for a café con leche outside a city cafe, it stuck out... when I dropped it outside the door of a tiny rural cafe in Pereje it blended into the landscape.

I felt comfortable on the rural Camino. Even though I was frecuently alone, I was never lonely. I felt the companionship of the other Pilgrims whether they were physically with me or not. I was very much at home amid the millions of footsteps I followed and those for whom my footsteps would show the Way.

But at the end I did begin to feel that the destination became such a focal point. How many kms, how many days, how many hours, how many steps. Deviation and detour from the purpose simply didn't happen. I guess in a way it was good that I didn't take my full guidebook with me ( I used Mullán Bravo Lozano) because had I had the benefit of all the descriptions and photos, I would have wanted to stop and see everything. I might still be on the Way! As it was my companions laughed at the fact I had a conversation or at least a "Buenos Días" for every cow, horse, cat and dog (and even a few mice and rabbits!) that I met!

I recall more than once feeling envious of the Spaniards who could come to the Camino and walk it at their leisure whenever the Spirit moved them. But I suppose like everything else, it isn't the same when it is at your doorstep. But I must admit, the idea of unlimited time to explore and visit is incredibly appealing...

Buen Camino,
 

vinotinto

Active Member
#5
Arn said:
FREE wine bubbling in white and red.
Looking back at my pictures of the vino fountain at Irache, It appears that only red vino flows freely, and that the other spout is for water. Sorry for the bogus info about white vino I posted awhile back... :oops: :arrow:
 

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vinotinto

Active Member
#7
frmikeminn said:
culture, food and wine's a bit...
I was lucky enough to have some Spanish folks take me under their wing for the Galician part of the Camino, right up into Santiago (which is probably the best way to learn and get an "in" to the local culture). Here are a couple of pointers that I took away from them, along with other bits of trivia:

When you head into Galicia, make sure you get into seafood, particularly pulpo (octopus). Along with that, try crab, clams, and fish in general (Santiago has some great stuff to offer the palate here: Cafe/Restaurante Casa Manolo, O Beiro Vinoteca, and Casa Camilo). Pair it up with some of Spain's white wines, and you'll be in heaven.

Take some time to learn some Spanish wine facts, such as terms like "Reserva" and "Crianza," that have to do with the vino preparation and aging process, vintages, wineries, and so on.

In general, try straying from the pilgrim menus (which tend to get monotonous after awhile) and hit restaurants where the locals gather. Play with the menu and try plenty of tapas dishes and local wines accordingly.

When you hit Logrono, you'll be at the gateway to Rioja wine country. There are lots of vino stores in Logrono. I spent an extra day there, and when I left the city I took a half-bottle of red from the 82 or 83 vintage, which was supposed to be great. Despite my mangling the cork, it tasted muy bueno with breakfast on the trail.

There are two streets in Logrono that are famous for their foods - a stylish gal working at the Planeta Agua outdoor store (a good place to stop for Camino supplies) steered me towards them. I can't remember what they are off the top of my head - if I find them in my notes, I'll post them. If not, you can always find them out when you get there.

Speaking of wines, Rioja always seems to get the big press. But the wines from other regions are worth trying as well. For example, the region around Leon is an up-and-coming wine area, so when you get there, try some of their offerings (and there's an underground restaurant near Leon called Cueva San Simon that's to die for - check http://www.cuevasansimon.com for more info).

I also recommend you give orujo de hierbas a go, particularly after dinner. Folks drink it to help digestion and as a cap to a good meal. Just be careful - it's high in alcohol content, so too much can send you for a loop (hehe).

In colder areas, mixing booze and coffee helps to stave off the chills. I used cafe con cognac (which I first saw combined in a bar right before Logrono) to bolster myself for the cold, rainy, and windy climb up to O'Cebreiro (which, by the way, is supposed to have a great restaurant for pulpo) and down the other side.

All of this will be helped by learning as much Spanish as you can - or at least making the effort to do so, especially as it relates to interpersonal stuff and cuisine. The locals like it when you at least try to speak Spanish.

Note that the usual dinner meal (vs. pilgrim dinnertime) in Spain doesn't get kicking until around 9-10PM or so. If you eat earlier than that (as I did much of the time), you'll be mostly on your own. Keep that in mind depending on the experience you're looking for - solitude or lots of company.

And last, but not least, there's a Pizza Hut in Burgos! Yeah, baby!! :lol: :arrow:
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#8
Vinotinto...I don't know what to say!

All the threads...all the experiences...all the information..good ...solid and well managed!

Then there's VINOTINTO!

Ma Man...did you walk the Way or did you experience and write a gormonbombastic (is that a word?) trip report that would make a New York Times best selling author fairly salivate at it's completeness.

I believe you and Deirdre and Sil need to write a book on...well...here's a title:

"Eating, Drinking and BEING Merry...on the Milky Way!"

It would be a best seller...I'm sure.

Gosh guys..you're making my pious soul demand an extra few lashes just to have the opportunity to travel in your company.

Buen Camino,

Arn

PS ...for the offended...that's your right! Have a bota on me!
A
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#9
Whoa!
What I am about to say is going to diminish my reputation but I need to confess these things.
Arn, I am the last person to contribute to the Gourmet Guide! I don't drink - not a drop, not even a champagne toast at weddings.
I am a vegetarian, so no pulpo, crabs, choritozos or empanadas for me. I lived on tortilla, ensalada, queso, pasta and venduras and fruta. (I also don't smoke, so no fat cigar after the meal.)
But, I can sing a good pub song!
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
Donating Member
#10
Steady now Sil - Lent is nearly upon us - as a penance you could start drinking alcohol, eating meat and smoking large cigars for 6 weeks :)

Seriously - don't you think it would be fascinating to have time to make all of the detours recommended in guide books? Maybe you've done some?

J
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
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:
#11
In David Gitlitz and Linda Davidson's book, they write:
".... understanding what you see is a function of what you know ...."

Before walking the Camino Frances for the first time in 2002 I hadn't wanted to read too much about the camino because I thought I would pick it up along the way. Now I realise that I missed so much by not knowing enough about the history of the pilgrimage and the wonderful treasures along the way. I couldn't tell a Romanesque or Gothic church from a Baroque so didn't really have the understanding of what I was seeing that Linda speaks of.
Because we only had 27 days I was often just too exhausted to do any detour that was more than 50m off the path.
"There is a beautiful church (Eunate) just 3 km down the road," a local told us outside Obanos." "Three more kms to walk - not today thank you!"
(I spent a few hours at Eunate last year but unfortunately the albergue wasn't open).
We didn't wait for a church to be opened or look for the key. "Seen one you've seen them all". I heard a pilgrim say, and I agreed.
Over the past five years I have learned a lot from this and other Forums; read extensively on the history, architecture, music, traditions and regions of the camino Frances and have collected over 20 books, DVDs and videos which I show at workshops and at talks given to interested organisations.
Last year I walked the camino with a little more knowledge, at a more leisurely pace, as a more humble pilgrim, with time to include a few museums, churches, cathedrals and cloisters as well as the detours to Eunate, Clavijo, to see the ancient relic at Oviedo and listen to the monks singing Gregorian chants at Santo Domingo de Silas. I wanted to visit the archaelogical ruins at Atapuerca but, because they are in a military zone, you can only go with a tour and that day the tour was already full.

The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago has become my text book. In the preface, Linda writes:
"From the Pyrenean border between France and Spain we will walk with you, providing useful and interesting information about the history, people, natural environments, artistic monuments…concentrating on the things you would have seen if you were a pilgrim in the Middle Ages."

Perhaps I will have to walk a fourth time to find the precious treasures that I missed out on last year!
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#12
Sil wrote:I can sing a good pub song!
And...there you have it ladies and gentlemen....the Traveling Peregrinos, with Food, Drink and PUB songs. How can one go wrong!

But getting serious a bit. We all have reasons for swimming against the current and, for those of you that haven't tried it, it's a fantastic way to strengthen not only your body but your resolve.

Back in grammer school (boy has that become a misnomer) one of the poems we had to memorize was "IF" by Rudyard Kipling. I always liked it and especially this part"


If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,
If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:
To me that's the key element for me on My Camino. I have truly come to that point where my past deeds for good or for ill are behind me and I'm moving forward.

Buen Camino,

Arn
 
#13
Arn

"If" An inspirational piece of poetry, a copy of which has hung of the walls of our family home for the past 70 years. Five years ago it was passed from my mother to myself on the understanding that it would go to my son on her passing. Three days later we lost her unexpectedly. He and his partner undertook the French Camino last April/May and myself and partner are heading out to the Portugues Camino in May. May Kipling 's poem provide us with a greater insight into ourselves and the people around us.
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#14
Rose Louise,

Your family has a legacy that will continue, passed from one to another, IF only more families had a similar tradition and then, more importantly, lived the Word!

For the folks that may be interested...here's the entire poem:

[IF]

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,
If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings--nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much,
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And--which is more--you'll be a Man, my son!

--Rudyard Kipling


Arn
 

Arn

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
#16
Vinotinto wrote:I kind of like the title Getting Lit Up on the Milky Way better.
I'll drink to that!

Then, of course, it all depends what IT is. Opps, sorrryyyyyyy.

Lit, Lit as in "High as a Kite on the 4th of July"

Very patriotic Vinotinto

With apologies to everyone...I just couldn't resist! I tried honest!

Salud,
Arn
 

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