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Senda Pet Peeve

Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances: 2015, 2017, 2019, 2021
My wife and I are currently in O’CEBREIRO and will arrive in Santiago in one week. This is our fourth Camino Frances.

An irritation we have experienced each of our four caminos. On most camino hiking paths the typical width is not more than six feet, sometimes less. This allows at best two pilgrims to be on a path for one to pass another. So many times we have encountered a pilgrim to stop in his or her place mid-path, blocking the advancement of other pilgrims. We experienced this several times this camino. A few times this is in the middle of a steep uphill climb and the pilgrim appears to just be looking at his/her cell phone! A few times stopped in the path speaking on the cell phone. A few times even worse, two pilgrims stopped side by side blocking the entire path! I can’t believe the pilgrim lacks self awareness and can be so rude to others! I am tempted to say something but generally just side step them continue.

If you have experienced this, is there an effective way to say something to have the pilgrim step off the senda and not block others?

Bob
 
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Marc S.

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
I have experienced this, though it is not really an irritation for me, and to label this as rude behaviour seems a bit overdone.

My solution: give a friendly smile, say 'hola' (which is understandable in all languages I guess) and the other person usually returns the smile and 'hola', makes way, and the problem (if there ever was one) is solved.
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
You obviously haven't walk during a school holiday yet. Now, that is traffic with a troop of 50 or so students in lock step, side by side forming a column the length of several automobiles.
 
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Darby67

Enólogo caminando
Past OR future Camino
2018 CF Jan-Feb
2019 CF Jan-Mar
Con permiso and Buen Camino, two phrases that come in handy, perhaps even in the same breath.

We all have our moments of being oblivious, not shockingly it always seems to coincide with somebody else on a mission to get someplace. I don’t see it as a Camino thing, just human nature as we all sort of live in our own story to a degree.
 

Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
I believe we have all experienced this from time to time and when it's done once or twice on a trip it is no big thing and a loud enough "Excuse me" usually gets the job done or sends the message that they are blocking the path.
With that being said on a long trip, with this occurring day after day I can recognize how it can become irritating or frustrating to the point of aggravation to some.
 
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Sirage

Member
Past OR future Camino
Le Puy to Santiago (2005), Porto to Santiago (2007), Vezelay for 200 kms (2009), From Seville, May (2015), Le Puy to Sangüesa (2016), Norte-Primitivo (Sep-Oct 2016)
A very practical solution is not to walk the Frances again.

There is the Mozarabe(s), the Torres, the Geira. You won't have that annoyance on these excellent choices and no doubt lots of others.
 

Thurland

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2018
My wife and I are currently in O’CEBREIRO and will arrive in Santiago in one week. This is our fourth Camino Frances.

An irritation we have experienced each of our four caminos. On most camino hiking paths the typical width is not more than six feet, sometimes less. This allows at best two pilgrims to be on a path for one to pass another. So many times we have encountered a pilgrim to stop in his or her place mid-path, blocking the advancement of other pilgrims. We experienced this several times this camino. A few times this is in the middle of a steep uphill climb and the pilgrim appears to just be looking at his/her cell phone! A few times stopped in the path speaking on the cell phone. A few times even worse, two pilgrims stopped side by side blocking the entire path! I can’t believe the pilgrim lacks self awareness and can be so rude to others! I am tempted to say something but generally just side step them continue.

If you have experienced this, is there an effective way to say something to have the pilgrim step off the senda and not block others?

Bob
A little story to lighten the thread:

Walking toward El Burgo de Ranero in 2017, my wife and I were passed by biking pilgrims. They rang the bells as they approached from the rear, we moved to the right, and about 8 bikes went past.

A few minutes later, and they had stopped for a water break, and were totally blocking the path. There was lots of room to walk around them, but that's not the point. They were totally blocking the path.

In my best "bicycle bell" voice I said, "Ding ding ding", and slowly picked my way through them.

They realized what they were doing and together we had a good laugh, they gave us each a chocolate bar, and we were off, none the worse for the wear!
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
A few times
Walking is like driving a car. You should always drive (and walk) with enough distance between you and the other car (or pilgrim) that you can safely come to a stop and not collide, crash...whatever. I actually feel badly for the pilgrims engrossed in devices, so anytime I passed one who was locked deep inside their device bubble, oblivious to the real world I would say a quiet prayer for them. Hope they eventually smell at least one rose, or tree, or cow or whatever. ;)
Anytime I encountered large groups of student pilgrims, at times completely taking up the path and dozens in number, I would just step aside and let them pass. Sit down and take a break. It could be annoying sometimes, but they seem so joyous, singing and smiling and talking up a storm. Joy of youth.
I long for the pre pandemic days when I enjoyed such inconveniences when the Camino was as it was.
 

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