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Should I try to find you?

Lexicos

Jim
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
2017
Camino Portuguese 2019
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
 
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mspath

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
.....
I think because I’m content to live with the memory.
And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
Indeed Lexicos impermanence makes each moment very special as Rainer Maria Rilke suggested in his 9th Duino Elegy, (translated by
Stephen Mitchell).

"...But to have been,
This once, completely, even if only once:
To have been at one with the earth, seems beyond undoing."
 
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Camino(s) past & future
St Jean to Santiago (2012, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2019)
Via Francigena (2018); Via Podiensis (4-6, 2020)
During my travel in Korea last year, I met with two of the young Korean pilgrims with whom I had bonded so fondly on the Camino the previous year. I was happy to see them, but, you know, they were young, busy with their life in Seoul, and, well, you get the idea. I still have those wonderful memories of them, but the meeting in Korea didn't add anything.
 

Lexicos

Jim
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
2017
Camino Portuguese 2019
Yes, I can understand that Kay. Still, sorry to hear it. I guess things, and people, change a lot in a week, a month, let alone over a year or two.
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
Since reading this thread, I now have these song lyrics running on repeat in my head...

“Don't try to find me, please don't you dare.
Just live in my memory, you'll always be there...”

Thanks. 😉
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!

Great question, I have thought a lot about this.

I have many examples that cut both ways. My general attitude is that it’s fun to re-connect, but usually not likely to recreate the bonds that seemed to emerge on the camino. Let’s face it, the situational dynamics on the camino are unusual if not unique. Many people freely share their deep thoughts, hopes, and fears with people they met an hour ago. Very few people would do that in a “normal” situation. In addition to the fact that you are feeling kind of “stripped down to the basics,” you are also in what seems to be a very safe supportive environment. One friend who walks caminos and belongs to an addiction support group at home told me that she finds the environment to be very similar in some ways. It encourages a no-holds-barred approach to human interaction, and though there is no pledge of confidentiality as there is in the support groups, the camino does seem to create a safe bubble feeling.

I think that the value of these perhaps fleeting bonds is that it gives many people a chance to unburden in many ways — to grieve, rejoice, refocus, etc. We are really just props that help achieve that, so it is not surprising that often times when we reconnect in the “real world” and those intense emotional cathartic experiences are behind us, those bonds do not re-emerge. But yes I am still in touch with a few people from caminos nearly 20 years ago, as are many people I know. I see that as just the luck of the draw, that those were people that I would have become friends with in my daily life if I had had encounters with them. But for many of the others, as you suggest, it was just the moment that brought us together — great moments, real moments, but not permanent bonds.

Buen camino, Laurie
 

Ernesto.IT

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
Hi Lexicos,
I'm stil in touch with with fellow pilgrims from my first camino 2012, and the 2015 one we stil send each others greetings and progressing news of our life.
So don't anything stop you.
Buen camino
 

Chris Gi

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Did April through June 2018 from Pamplona to Santiago.
2020 May or end of September - NO!
2021 ?
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
I often wonder how many marriages have resulted from the meeting up of fellow pilgrims on the Camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés five times, Madrid two days, Ingles once.
A short email to someone you met and exchanged addresses with might be worthwhile. Maybe you'll hear back, maybe not. What's to lose? I'm in touch with several people - some I've met since, others not. If you're thinking about them in these times, it could be nice to let them know. It's up to them to reply. I've been pleasantly surprised when I've unexpectedly heard from a Camino friend.
 

Kimtom

Wannawalk
Camino(s) past & future
Frances on bike (2014)
Frances on foot (2019)
Frances on foot (2020)
I am fortunate to be in touch with five friends from last years Camino. One of them is Rodolfo. We planned to meet up for lunch or coffee when I walked through Burgos on this years Camino. But instead on March 13 the Camino was closing all around and in a precarious state, I taxied from Villa Franca Montes de Oca to Burgos. Rodolfo came to an emptying plaza near the cathedral, and we walked to his home where I, who was a possible danger from my travels, was welcomed by his family. His son on computer helped me arrange a new flight home. His wife cooked the most wonderful meals. Rodolfo accompanied me two days later by bus to Madrid to make sure the flight was on. His son drove us to the bus station at 3am. They all insisted with smiles and laughs that they get up that early all the time🙂. Rodolfo stayed at the airport 4 hours until my plane was sure to depart to the US with no problems and if there was trouble I was welcome back at his home for any length of time.
I made it home.
There are no adequate words to express my gratitude to these friends for their kindness.

That was a significant end of the Camino walk this year. The beginning was also unique. I stayed for a week with Milka outside of Madrid. We met last year. She invited me to participate in a 3 day qi gong workshop she was holding in Madrid. During the days of the workshop her partner translated for me all that was being said. We shared wonderful meals and went hiking in the Piedras. After a number of days enjoying the company of these friends, I set out to walk...

Some of the people I have met on the Camino have turned out to be very good friends. Their generosity and kindness reaches across the ocean and stays with me. Every few months one of us will send a What’s app and we will have a conversation that may span a few days. It brings great joy!

After returning home from the Camino, while my friends in Spain were confined to their homes, I would like a prayer, bring them with me on evening walks along the trails in my town, to the forest and to the sea at the edges of town. Then they too could feel the earth under their feet and the wind and fresh air. At least this is what I wished for them.

I am writing this because with so many open hearts, some friendships may be short, and some may be long. You never know what will happen from a Camino 😊❤
 

Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
@Lexicos -I completely agree with you. I'm sure your thoughts on this topic have been pondered many times over. (Me for sure).

Through the years and over 4 camino's I have met "numerous" likeminded people, who I still keep in touch with via phone calls, emails, Skype etc...
Walking with someone for anywhere between 10 and 35 days you really get to know them and see them at their core. During those times you get to understand them, their wants, beliefs and needs and at the end of the day you realize we are pretty much all the same with what we require in life.

Maybe more world leaders should walk a camino together in an effort to bring peace, unity and understanding to this world... ???
 

BruceNZ

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portuguese 2012
Camino Mozarabe 2018 Granada-Merida
Camino de la Lana (2020)
It's an oldee but may have relevance here...perhaps we meet for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
It is what it is and the good memories still simmer and give me warmth years later.
 

Jamie K

lifelong pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
Camino France (May and June 2017)
Portuguese Camino (May and June 2018)
Possibly Le-Puy or VDLP
I think it is the moments that make the people behave and feel the way on the Camino. It is indeed a very unique setting, you know. Walking on and off with the people you have just met for weeks, getting to talk about things/themselves that they hardly do back home because you know, we just don't. And these moments are very powerful that wakes you up. However, when we try to go back to that moment by reconnecting with these people who are in different settings, they never be the same unfortunately. Not even close..
You just have to let those moments be..
 

Lexicos

Jim
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
2017
Camino Portuguese 2019
Yes, it seems to be the way it goes most often Jamie. C’est la vie. Letting go of the substance but holding on to the spirit. One of the hardest things to do I suppose. As we can see though from other replies, it can go either way.
 

NualaOC

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few and hopefully lots more. See signature.
Thanks @Lexicos for starting this thread - and thanks to all the contributors. Reading your posts has been a moment of calm for me during a busy time.

I love those fleeting and deeply meaningful interactions with Camino pilgrims. I've had conversations that felt life-changing as they helped me to see situations in a different light, or learn from a perspective very different to my own. Although I only keep in touch with a relatively small number of people, I deeply cherish all those interactions, including some of the 'not so heart-warming' ones. I've learned so much about the world and about myself and I'll be forever grateful for that.

Admittedly, there are a few people who I'd love to accidentally bump into sometime. It wouldn't be too hard to find them if I felt so inclined, but I'm in the same camp as @BruceNZ :
...perhaps we meet for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
It is what it is and the good memories still simmer and give me warmth years later.
 
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Terry Callery

Chi Walker
Camino(s) past & future
"Portuguese Camino - In Search of the Infinite Moment" Amazon/Kindle books authored
"Slow Camino"
The National Art Museum Soares dos Reis was about eight blocks from my hotel. There are two churches standing together side-by-side that I had to pass by on the way the art museum. The nuns had their own church, the Igreja das Carmelitas, built next to the monk’s church, the Igreja de Carmo with a one meter alley between the buildings. If I had stopped to see the pair of churches, the whole day would have changed and not been as magical as it turned out. "No" I said to myself, “Go straight to the museum since it might start to rain, it is a big museum and it could take several hours. Don't stop now; you can always stop on the way back.” I walked another block past the two churches, and all of a sudden, I heard a voice with a German accent saying;
"Terence, Terence is that you?"
Who the hell do I know who would recognize me in Porto? I spun around and immediately recognized Dieter, my old walking companion from last year’s Camino in Spain. What an amazing coincidence! Dieter was an inventor from Germany and I really enjoyed his company for a couple of days last year. I met him on the Route Frances last year, and immediately liked him. He was a smart guy and one of his brilliant inventions was an inflatable movie screen that can pop right up to show a film in a park outdoors. We immediately began talking of personal things when we first met and we had forged a common bond. Both of us had real challenges in our marriages. Dieter had done the Route Frances eight or nine times, so now he was doing the Portuguese Camino for a change of scenery. Once each year, Dieter would get tired of his clinically diagnosed depression and would head out on the Camino as his way of therapy.
Now here he was again! We went into the Burger King and got coffee and talked for about an hour. Dieter had just flown in from Germany and gotten off the bus and was heading for the medieval Cathedral Se to get his pilgrim credentials stamped and to start his Camino. Our itineraries differed since I was planning on staying another two nights in Porto. Dieter was planning to travel the coastal route for the section out of Porto, which is not as well marked as the central route that I planned to take. Dieter had a limited budget, so while it would be very cool to travel with him, I would want to stay at some hotels that cost three times the price of the modest pilgrim albergues where he planned to find lodging. What a nice lift it gave me to see his big smile. And so while it would have been good to have companionship for awhile, we parted ways, exchange emails and agreeing to stay connected over the next few weeks to increase our chances of connecting again. “Perhaps we can get our Compostelas together in Santiago?” Dieter suggested to me.

“Yes I told him, I would be honored to get my Compostela with a pilgrim friend.” And so we went our separate ways on this Ash Wednesday in Porto.

Really ---- What are the Chances?
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Camino(s) past & future
April-May 2019
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
Yes, I resonate with your conclusions. I’ve walked twice. First one I was thrown together with a group of Germans by some shared hardships. One member of the group and I spent a lot of time together. I accompanied her one day to the ER in Burgos and became her “Camino Dad” and nurse for a few days afterwards. She’s the age of my daughter who does not keep in contact with me and I’m the age of her Dad that she’s never met. It was totally a platonic and magical time. She invited me to visit her in Germany after the Camino and I did that. It turned out to be an uncomfortable experience. She had changed and moved beyond the person that she was on the Camino. Fair enough. I was happy for her.

Second Camino. Not intentionally but i ended up walking much of it with a woman from Brazil. It’s kinda magical, mystical, and random how you end up walking with certain people on the Camino. She’s married with young children back home. As we walked we each shared so much of our lives with each other. In Astorga in the albergue in the morning i was ready a little sooner than her and we agreed as usual to meet for breakfast down the line. It rained very hard that day and we never did meet up. We didn’t see each other again. I only knew her first name and we hadn’t exchanged contact information like we had talked about. The lessons of both of these encounters for me is to cherish these moments that occur—moments of closeness, vulnerability, inspiration, revelation, beauty. To welcome them and to open the heart but to not hold onto them. I shared this with a good friend who has been married to one person for 40 years. He reflected that his experience with his partner parallels my Camino experience. “Months of slog, silence, quiet companionship, and moments of intimacy, joy, hope”. People ask me what my Camino was like. I say it was like life. The goal is to be present today, to live this moment, and then to let it go.
 
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FLEUR

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2012 - 2016
Voie de Paris / Tours Aulnay to Saintes 2017
Camino del Baztan 2018
I know three people that have divorced since doing the Camino . . . A life changing experience indeed!
I have a friend who started walking the CF married to one wife, finished it years later married to his second wife!!
 

Tony Bobcat

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017
I’ve seen several posts by forum members trying to find fellow pilgrims from past hikes. It’s an irresistible desire to make contact with someone who has added meaning to our life or shown us kindness or even love. It’s a very human and humane yearning that we all have. I have often wondered about some of the pilgrims I met on my walks. It would be nice to stay in touch with people who are with us at pivotal times in our life. The Camino is, for many of us, a pivotal event. Reading our posts is testimony to that. So far, I have resisted the urge to seek out my fellow pilgrims from Spain 2017 and Portugal 2019. I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite. That is, they exist at a given time in a given place and they have that special meaning precisely because they are temporary, impermanent. I don’t know. I’m not sure. But I think there must be some truth in it. This minute, this day is special partly because it will go, into my past, and never come back. I had better make the most of it and enjoy it!
I keep in touch with some of my fellow Camino pilgrims through Facebook and ones that are not on FB.through mail. So nice to receive a Christmas card and photos from John ( Ireland). Hopefully one day we will meet up again
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
I think because I’m content to live with the memory. And partly because I know that some things are finite.
I was discussing this in another context yesterday. I have found over my pilgrimage walks that my fellow pilgrims fall into three broad classes:
  1. those with whom I have maintained contact, some for a few years and others since I met them. I met up with some a year or so after we walked together, but in the main, the effluxion of time has reduced the level of contact.
  2. those who I actively avoided, albeit very few fell into this category. This was beyond the mere annoyance at the noisy early risers and the petty complainers, although they weren't candidates for staying in touch with.
    • The worst of these was the middle-aged man who was walking alone. The first night that we stayed in the same albergue, he was drinking with a couple of young women, and after the lights out time insisted on continuing to converse loudly with one of them outside the dormitory area, clearly with the intent of having her join him for the rest of the night. I met her a couple of days later, when she revealed her suspicion that one of her drinks had been spiked. She had been rescued by another pilgrim in an agitated and distressed state, and was actively avoiding this man. At some stage, another friend insisted that he join us for dinner in circumstances where I couldn't reveal or discuss my concerns. That was a far from pleasant evening.
    • I suspect that he might have sensed my antipathy, because while he shared contact details with others including my friend who had invited him to join us for dinner, he didn't suggest that to me.
  3. by far the largest group is those that I might have walked with for an hour or so on some day, or others where we kept each other company over a meal we might otherwise each have eaten alone. I never formed such a strong bond with any of these that I felt like being part of their 'camino family' and arranging to walk with them.
    • It was sufficient to see them from time to time, and, for some, share our joy when we met in Santiago having arrived at the same time.
    • While I sometimes wonder where some of these pilgrims are today, I am not inclined to seek them out any more than I was to arrange to walk with them on the Camino.
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Camino(s) past & future
April-May 2019
I could see how the Camino could bring to clear consciousness many and various aspects of a relationship—including areas that habitually are kept in the dark.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
I have a friend who started walking the CF married to one wife, finished it years later married to his second wife!!
Many times I thought I just met my second wife on Camino(s). The only problem always was that I haven't been married yet. Not even once... ;)
 

allykat

Camino Hopeful
Camino(s) past & future
(2013) 6/19-7/31 CF/Fisterra
(2021) 6/16-7/31 CF/Fisterra
Mi Camino Familia isn't super close, but we have all stayed in contact since our Camino in 2013. We friended as many as we could find on facebook and created a group for all of us. It has been really nice to see my Camino Familia grow and get careers, kids and travels.

I think it really depends on your group, but it can be very rewarding!
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times
There are many pilgrims I shared Facebook contact information with, and while we conversed for a period of time afterwards about the walk it faded with time. Lives go on away from the Camino.
There are a couple of peregrinas I met while walking that I shared meals with, walked all day with etc. Clicked quite well and for sure mutual attractions, but in the end never shared contact information. Life went on after we reached the cathedral. Still, I think about them sometimes.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I have three good friends I met on my first Camino in 2015 around the dinner table at a private albergue just outside Pamolona. We are all from the midwest USA and every fall we get together for a long weekend "mini-reunion" to reminise, hike, and prepare a tapas meal complete with Santiago cake and Rioja wine. I have since walked the Le Puy Camino with two of them.
That said, I have failed to acquire the email addresses of a few special aquaintences on my Caminos and have sorely regretted it after returning home.
I also have had the pleasure of meeting up at different times with friends from this forum.
 

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