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So why do you do it...?


So why do you do it...? A question I have been asked quite a lot the past 3 weeks. The same 3 weeks I have been "suffering" the post Camino... it is always quite difficult for me "to land". It is alway difficult for me to get back to "daily life".

So why do you do it...? a question my friends and co-workers have asked me. And there is no easy answer... at least not one that will keep them interessted for more than a few seconds... as I can quickly see in their eyes as they cannot follow me at all.

So why do you do it...? I have learned to answer shortly and "distant": "Because it is a good way for me to relax and disconnect..."

...It is not a lie, it is a good way for me to relax and disconnect. But there are so much more to it.

If I tell them, that I love waking up in the morning and put on my boots and my backpack... and start walking not knowing where I will spend the night... They shake their heads with a smile and tell me that I am crazy...

If I tell them that every time I do "The Camino" I get closer to myself and I get deeper and deeper into myself... I loose them. I caan tell by the looks in their eyes ...They do not understand... (what is this woman talking about...??)

If I tell them that, walking "El Camino" is a process... it is a feeling of freedom... a feeling of power and a feeling of strength... again, I loose them...

Yeah... But WHY do you do it... ?? What can I say... ? it is just the way I love to take my time off... - "But you can relax on the beach", I am told... No... I cannot relax on the beach... I get VERY restless on the beach.

I have now done the Camino 4 times... Every time it is different. EVERY time. This time I got even deeper into myself. I learned more about who I am... and (un)fortunately I found something I am not proud of... Someting I would like to change... - I didn't like the feeling, but I am glad I found it - so now I can change it... or at least the reaction I have when "this thing" shows...

Why do you do the same route every time...? Well... I haven't exactly done the same route EVERY time... but my reason for walking this route is I do not need to think. I can follow the yellow arrows and leave all the "thinking" to the body... the explorations... the feelings and emotions... My caminos have become more and more an inner journey. I am not affraid of what I might find... I might like it or I mind not like it... but it is there... and I have to accept it. It is a part of me... and ONLY I can change it... (if I want to).

So why do I do it...? There are so many reasons... but basicly it is about an inner journey... as my walking almost always becomes very meditative... I love it.

The landing this is a hard but necesary part of the journey... and I get do decide how I land. I still have some landing to do... but I am slowly getting back.

Red Kite

That's really lovely, Annette.

I did my first camino this year. I can't wait to do my second, third and fourth.

I can understand already how different they'll all be and I can't wait.

Welcome home. Have a safe landing and start planning again soon.


Staff member
Hi, Annette,
Like you, I've been walking on the Camino(s) for years, and I keep asking myself the same question. I remember that on my first Camino I was sort of waiting for the answers to all great questions to fall out of the sky, and they didn't, and then afterwards I was waiting to feel transformed, and I didn't, and I felt like a bad pilgrim for not having had any real transcendental experience. But yet I kept coming back. What I realized during this most recent Camino (I just finished walking the Camino Primitivo) is that for me the Camino, unlike any other walking or hiking or anything else I've done, is essentially life-affirming. Many of us walk with sadness, with tragedy, with heavy hearts, but in the end we are all alive and we are all putting one foot in front of the other every day. And the differences between us are much less than the similarities when we are walking -- the Camino is the great equalizer. We are all reduced to basically the same parameters -- our backpacks, our sleeping bags, our feet. When I walk, I'm not trying to escape from anything or leave anything behind, because I love and am very happy with my family, my job, my friends, but this Camino thing is my special place where I find myself being thankful and grateful every single day and happy to just be able to experience the beauty and the simple essence of it all. Maybe that's selfish or self-indulgent, but I hope to continue walking as often as I can for as long as I can. Laurie


RIP 2015
please don't get me wrong annette, i have read some of your blog and i know i could walk alongside you and talk about things that matter,
but i think the question to be answered is not why you do it but why you keep doing it and why you keep doing what you do in barca,and why other people keep repeating.
i know i talk as someone yet to do there own camino, but i know i will only do it once,(do i hear hollow laughter from all you regulars).
you talk of being able to relax to disconnect while walking, a panacea to your life in barca,but surely the camino should not be a pill to be taken yearly. what happens when the pill does not work anymore.
at a time when numbers are increasing how many people doing the camino are repeat offenders? is it selfcentered to possible denie virgin walkers the experience that they first had and try to repeat untill it does'nt work for them anymore and then complain how the camino is too crowded these days.
i'am sorry annette i should not reply to threads late at night (just watched a video where some bloke called merlin-"love and peace" has decided after 13 years of doing the camino that now its too comercialised and to many people are doing it-doh!! )
at my time of life i don't need to relax and disconnect i need to breathe,please allow me that breathing space.
love ian


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:
Hi Ian,
Just as people return over and over again to a favourite holiday destination, so every pilgrim will have their own reasons for walking the camino more than once. One thing to remember is that if you walk 500km or 800km or 1000km you cannot possibly see or experience all there is in one journey. Last year I only stayed in two of the albergues I stayed in in 2002 and 2004 (Roncesvalles and Ventosa). Besides revisiting places that were special on the first journey, I also walked various detours that I didn't do the first time around.

In “Journey to Portugal” Jose Saramago, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1998, said:
'The journey is never over. Only travellers come to an end. The end of one journey is simply the start of another. You have to see what you missed the first time, see again what you already saw, see in springtime what you saw in summer, in daylight what you saw at night, see the sun shining where you saw the rain falling, see the crops growing, the fruit ripen, the stone which has moved, the shadow that was not there before. You have to go back to the footsteps already taken, to go over them again or add fresh ones alongside them. You have to start the journey anew. Always. The traveler sets out once more."


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
peregrina2000 said:
.... this Camino thing is my special place where I find myself being thankful and grateful every single day and happy to just be able to experience the beauty and the simple essence of it all. Laurie

Laurie, so much of what you say rings so many bells for me. I guess I am at that post-Camino stage where I am trying to work out just what it all meant for me, and how it should affect the way I choose to live in future. One thing is for sure, along with the walking came thankfulness, and a great feeling of peace for me.
While I walked, I couldn't understand at all why people might do it more than once: somehow, as soon as I finished... I began to realise why...


Ian (Sagalouts),

No neeed for apologies... however I feel tempted to say. Let's talk when you have done the Camino... when you have been back for a while... you will know what I am talking about.

This is no a "pill" taken once a year. I do not know about your job situation your daily life... but answer me this... how often to do get to take 3-4 or maybe 5 weeks (or more) OUT of your calender and only do things for you... where you only have to think about you and NOTHING else...

...Or well, may be you can say it is a pill.... as the Camino becomes a "drug"... it is a feeling of life, emotions, freedom... of your inner self... something that feels so good that you just want more... and if you are religios I guess this will make you feel even closer to God... (since I am not religios I do know know about that part...).

It is a way to get to know who you are... DEEP inside... and not just on the "outer" facade... It is a way to relax the mind... I would even dare to say to relax the body though you walk 20-30 or 40 km. everyday...

You wrote: "i know i talk as someone yet to do there own camino, but i know i will only do it once,(do i hear hollow laughter from all you regulars)." - You know... I said the first time... "Never again" this was even though I had had an amazing time... - and yet I heard the calling...

You also wrote: "at my time of life i don't need to relax and disconnect i need to breathe,please allow me that breathing space." - but the need of breathing... is that not the need of relaxing... ?? Do you know what happens to the body when you allow your self to breathe... ??

I am only curious... ;-)

Buen Camino, and let's talk when you are back... I would love to hear your experience...


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:
A pilgrim is a drop-out from 'real' life! No telephones, television, radio, newspapers, grocery shopping, house-work, paying bills, running errands etc.
Your 'real' life is much easier, with all the mod-cons at hand, but much more complicated.
Walking el camino is hard but less complicated - all you have to do is eat, sleep, walk, wash clothes, eat sleep, walk.
It is difficult to understand why pilgrims like being homeless people for weeks on end, out of their comfort zone, away from the safety of their homes and families: being strangers in a foreign land: walking day after day in rain, mud, wind, sun, cold, heat: eating bocadillos or menu del peregrinos for a month, or going to bed hungry: sleeping in a dorm crowded with snoring strangers: only having two sets of clothes to wear and one pair of walking shoes: walking in spite of sore feet and blisters, tendonitis or shin splint. Your hair turns to straw and your pilgrim tan turns your skin into a strange shade of ochre so that you blend into the landscape. (You can tell a long-distance walker a mile away - the clothes have faded, the skin is shaded and they have a Zen-zone expression on their face!)
What's not to like about it! Can't wait to get back on the trail again.


RIP 2015
as a walker i know why people walk, i know the feelgood factor,what you haven't explained or justified is why there are so many repeating the "route frances" year after year as if acting out the film "groundhog day".
i have never willingly repeated the same journey twice, i have been known to walk a different way back from the shops. i don't watch a film twice,i have never read a book for the second time.very rarely do i go on holiday to the same place twice,i don't like to live too long in the same place,i have been to only one rock concert ( the isle of wight 1971-) so please beleave me i will only ever walk the "route frances" once,and if i ever did it twice it would be the return journey from santiago back.
when cristine (this pigrims blog) walked her camino it was in late spring she saw the fields of sunflowers flowering that was her moment her camino,she was saddened to read maggie's blog and hear of the same sunflowers dying in setember.
each of them had uplifting and lifechanging camino's perfect for their needs.
sill- jose saramage in his nobel speach spoke of a old photograph of his grandparents being just a snapshot a moment in time but it told him everthing he needed to know about them.
the same grandparent that he spent nights talking and sleeping under a fig tree while watching "the flowing silent sky through the hollow, the opal clarity of the milky way -the road to santiago" he got it and he never even walked it once.
in his book "the stone raft" the people know they can't keep doing the same thing over again their world has changed and they must move on.
if i want to see sun shining rain falling crops growing fruit ripening all i have to do is sit still if i want to see all the seasons i close my eyes and travel..
and yes annette i do know how to spend 5 weeks just pleasing myself.i have spent most of my 61 years doing just that.
and yes i do know how to breath,funnly enough it was taught me by a pipe smoking danish girl who left me to go live in "christiana" copenhagen in the early 70's,still we will always have crete lenard coen and alternate nostril breathing.
i beleave in spain the camino is known as the "spanish lunitic asylum" and because of the rain galicia as "the urinal of spain" because of the ever increasing numbers this seems to becoming true.
why should my camino moment be coloured by selfish people who have already had theirs and can't move on from their comfort zone.
"this moment is different than any before it this moment is different its now"-incredible string band.
all you repeat offenders should be banned from doing it again for a least 5 years or at least till me and rosie have done ours .you should be rounded up and placed in a betty ford type clinic in south africa run by sill and made to use a treadmill to you are sick of it.


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:
:lol: :lol: :lol:
Viva la difference!
I worked in the same place for 32 years - my husband worked for the same company for 40 years. I've have had the same husband for nearly 40 years! Lived in the same house for 40 years. For almost 40 years we've had a short holiday in one of the oldest game reserves in South Africa. We stay in the same section of the park, drive the same trails to look out for the same big five and other creatures.
I've read Carl Sagan's 'Cosmos' three times and Starkie's "The Road to Santiago" umpteen times. I've also seen "Within the Way Without' about 5 times.
I walked the first camino in May/June spring time - through fields of spectacular wild flowers, bright green wheat and storks nests loud with noisy babies clapping their beaks for food.
The last walk in August/September was harvest time - with fat bunches of grapes, figs, apples, blackberries on every hedgerow and waves of brown wheat.
The camino Frances is the Jacobean route par excellence and the one that historians and art historians have written most about. Last year I managed to visit places I missed the first time like Eunate, Santo Domingo do Silos, San Milan, Oviedo and Lugo.
I promise not to walk it next year so that you and Rosie have some breathing space on the trail. I'll do the Aragones and Camino Ingles instead.

PS: The pilgrim loony bin here is called the CSJ of SA and you are all welcome to join me on the treadmill anytime! :D

brendan nolan

Active Member
Hi All, :)
I just can't resist adding my 2penneth worth to this topic. A pilgrim does not have to justify/explain to anyone, but perhaps a story might fit here.
Many years ago when holidaying on the island of Lindisfarne (north of England, cut off from the mainland at high tide) we were asked by someone who was a visitor for the day: But what do you do here? We told her about the seals, birds, open skies, etc, etc. But what I was really thinking was: If you have to ask me that question you won't really understand my answer. And she didn't.
In 2005 I met a pilgrim from Barcelona at Villafranca del Bierzo - he was on pilgrimage to Santiago for the 27th time, perhaps that's where the answer lies, understanding the concept of pilgrimage.

Buen Caminos a todos,



Active Member
The first time I saw the Rocky Horror Picture Show I knew that I would have to see it again just to see what the movie was all about. So maybe some people do the trail again or again and again until they fulfill their needs, whatever they may be.
Isle of Wight 1970. I would not want to repeat that again for it fulfilled me like no other festival can ever fill.
And do not think that we will get in the way of you receiving what you need from your Camino. You will get it.... just allow it. No matter how many times you may need to walk it.
Peace and Love

Alan Pearce

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
Can Sagalouts be an Australian? Only someone with that style of laconic humour can pretend to write seriously about an experience that they have not encountered, when all they were trying to do was stir the possum. Thanks Sags, that's the best laugh I've had for ages. And to Annette, just thanks.


RIP 2015
today me and rosie walked 25k with full packs on the peddars way an old roman road that crosses west norfolk england.
from the photos i've seen of the camino not that different a place and one i confess i have walked before albeit on my own, today i walked it again with rosie,she has always made me a better person today she made it a better walk. so i was reminded of this forums logo "where past pilgrims share and future pilgrims learn"
bear with me i'am still learning so if any of you repeat affenders sil, lillian, annette are still around when and if me and rosie get to spain i'am sure you would all enhance our walk.
i am about to start my own blog on our build up to the road to santiago where this baby-boomer retired publican can vent his spleen,in the meantine i will continue to visit this site and hopefully this future pilgrim can learn some-more
love and peace Ian

Red Kite

I recommend that you do a fair bit of hill walking too, Ian.

Be prepared for the the camino's steep climbs and descents. It's not like Norfolk!! :)


New Member
Annette thank you for this lovely post. I have given up on trying to explain to people why I did the Camino perhaps because there are too many reasons, perhaps because I don't understand it myself! I just know I will be returning again some time in the future.

Sagalout, you really do have to walk the camino to really understand the pull to return. Doing my research before I walked I would often read how magical the walk is and never believed it. I would also read it could transform you in some enlightening way. Again I never believed it. I just knew I had to do it. And yes it is magical and yes it did transform me. It was a life changing experience in my case. This is coming from somebody who was just going on a long walk (an activity that I hated), didn't believe it would tansform me and came back a pilgrim...

Being from Wales I would train around the mountains and yes the senery is very much like areas in the UK, especially the Galicia region.


Javier Martin

Veteran Member
sagalouts said:
...what you haven't explained or justified is why there are so many repeating the "route frances"...

... I suppose that the reason is ... each Camino is different, same places, different persons, nothing similar.

I've walked many, many times several parts of the Camino Frances and every one is special for some reasons.

Buen Camino, as many times you want to enjoy it

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.


Active Member
I have done 2 caminos. I may not speak for others, but I would guess each time a person goes on this journey, she/he is going as a different person from the last time. Transformed? Changed? Feeling different reasons to go on a trek? I have no answer that would satisfy every person, I just know that it is personal for each of us. And that each time one wants to go it is like doing it for the first time.....
Peace & Love
Lillian (dreaming about the 3rd)

Ian Holdsworth

Active Member
I have now walked over 2000 miles on the Camino. Not all at once, but many smaller pilgrimages
of 200ml per time. For me the return is always different and deeper. At first the lessons about the amount your are have on your back, getting the wieght down, and the parrell lessons in life,get rid of all the consumer stuff etc, were uppermost. But also a first glimpse of something more in this experience that drew me on.
I have now come to see that the name for what I saw, but did not understand, is in classic Christian spirituality is called contemptation. That space where you are inside, but at the same time outside time. That space that is God's space. I heart to heart encounter. The great Spanish mystic St John of the Cross and his friend St Theresa of Avila called it the 'Darkness of God' or 'The dark night of the soul'. This idea of darkness is like the blindness that one gets by looking at the sun. It is reaching out into that which cannot be seen or percieved with normal faculties, which at the same time is expienced at the deepest level. Two pictures to try and explain what I mean. Image you are in a room with no light at all you extend your hands into the dark and feel nothing, whilst at the same time you feel the dark around you. Second that moment in the dark, after coupling is over where lovers are one, without knowing quite where one finishes and the other begins. This experience, as it is beyond us is almost impossible to explain. Many miss it or misunderstand what they are on the edge of, turn and walk away from it. But it is there. I have been there, on pilgrimage, on those long days when the sun is hot and there is along way to go and the senses sort of shut down. It is an entering of the narrow way that Jesus spoke of.
Why do I go? Because I am called. To an encounter with God. And that is why we live.

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
I think lots of people are in accord with Sagalouts´ suggestion that Return Pilgrims should consider walking a different route. The Frances infrastructure in places is stretched to the limit, and there´s such a wealth of "other caminos" out there to choose from.

Those on an inner journey should not be overly concerned if the scenery outside is different from one walk to the next... the interesting stuff evidently is all going on in their heads!

What amazes me is that so many people hungry for new experiences and change, go seeking it over and over in THE SAME PLACE! What´s up widdat?

(whose solution to post-camino hangover was to just move there and live.)


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
I tend to agree with Rebekah.Doing the same camino over and over again is a bit like people going to the same holiday spot year after year-I don't get it. Don't they realise that there are other, and in my opinion, far better caminos than the ridiculous race the CF has become.Contemplation, reflection and seeking some spirituality in life are not, in my book, group activities which seems to be the attraction for many on the CF,ie,the social aspect at the end of the day-or should I say given that I'm talikng about the CF the crazed rush for beds at the next albergue which often ends before noon. I defy anyone to say the last 100km on the CF in august is enjoyable given the hordes of people yet this year from Bandeira to SDC on the VDLP this year I saw one other pilgrim until I got to within 100 metres of the cathedral.


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:
For me, the allure of the camino frances has to be its long, well documented history: the folk lore surrounding it, the monuments and historical descriptions of the towns and villages along the way that still exist. I don’t have one book on my shelf that relates the history, architecture, art or medieval tradition of any other camino routes in Spain. Where are they? Have any been written?
The only problem with walking the camino in your holidays is that most of us have to walk it in a month or so. I would love to spend at least a year exploring the camino frances so that I can visit every museum, church, cathedral and castle, do detours to places of historical interest, mentioned by writers like Georgiana King, Walter Starkie and others, that have been excluded from the main route
20 or 30 years ago there was only one camino route in Spain – the Camino Frances – and only a few people (like Edwin Mullins) travelled in France along the Via Turonenesis from Paris to Spain in the 1970’s. In 1990 a new route was invented from Le Puy and more followed. ( )
I haven’t walked any of the other 15 or so camino routes – perhaps because none of them has the same magnetic mystique that the Frances does. I'm looking forward to walking the Aragones and Ingles next year though.

Kevin, don’t you think that one’s experience of walking the camino frances depends on what time of the year you walk it?
I walked the Frances last year and at no stage did I join a “crazed race for beds” nor did I arrive at the albergues at noon! We arrived after 5pm a few times and still got beds. There was lots of time for contemplation, reflection and spiritual moments.
When my husband joined us at the end of September to walk the last 100km from Sarria, we arrived in Portomarin after 4pm and the new albergue at the top of the steep steps was still half empty. No queues for the washing machines or the showers - same at Palais de Rei.
I don’t doubt that there is a rush for beds if you walk in July or August but certainly not at the end of September!


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Camino(s) past & future
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From my limited knowledge of the Cf is that it fell into disuse until the early 70's and in the last 30 odd years has become THE camino. I have been reading the post about the Evidence for St james and others and get the impression that many are not too troubled over whether st james actually is buried at SDC. My point is why then do these same people feel that the only authentic route is the CF when it may be leading to an illusion? When pressed many feel that the journey itself is the pilgrimage or in some way a metaphor for life-if this is this case why is it necessary to walk the CF and not walk another route-in fact make up your own?
Leaving aside whether st james is buried there there have been discussions on this forum around a similar theme about pilgrims walking from home and not heading for SJPDP,Pamplona or any other town on the CF but simply walking outside their front door and heading-presumably in the most direct way-to SDC. And yes I know that northern spain was free of muslim/arab occupation first but but surely that does not invalidate or make less authentic those after 1492 in southern spain who walked to SDC. Those coming from France would have travelled by whatever road was convenient. The Le Puy route is now regarded as a modern invention but surely the point about camino routes is that there were thousands-to a pilgrim hundreds of years ago leaving home "the camino" would have been the route he took, and returned by.
I also wonder how much of the CF is invented in the sense that new towns,roads and now freeways have taken the place of the original route and if it doesn't really matter that you are only 50,100,200 metres from the original route (assuming there ever was just one)why is it less authentice to walk from another point such as le puy,vezealy,paris....?
Yes the architecture and history of northern spain is fascinating but so seeing the mixing of Roman,arab/muslim and christian architecture on say the the VDLP-I dont think many people would find the via mozarabe towns of Granada, cordoba and merida boring.
It's interesting to think that in several hundred years, assuming the camino still exists,there will probably be many authentic routes given the fact that every tom dick and harry seems to feel compelled to write a book on the camino and that the CF has only achieved its popularity in the last 20 years.
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
Well, on my first Camino, I have to say that the majority of the people I met were on THEIR first Camino. So I just don't agree that "repeat offenders" are the ones taking up the beds ::laughing::

I"d also like to say that until you WALK the Camino, as Annette so eloquently explains, you will look at those who do as if they are loco! So come back after you walk, and we'll talk about it then.

I also want to say that I was VERY appreciative of the peregrinos who had walked before me -- they were full of advice and taught me to relax and believe that the Camino and God would provide.

The Camino pushes you to your very breaking point. It shows you just how strong you are!
It can be like a parent who pushes you. You love them in some ways, but in other ways you hate them and can't wait to leave their house. Then you leave and realize how wise they were!

The day I left Spain after my FIRST Camino, I swore I'd never set food in Spain again! Then within a week, I was longing to be back on the road and talking about "next time." It's something you just have to experience, this freedom of no possessions, no technology, no noise, no concern with what you'll wear or what you'll eat, just putting one foot in front of the other. It's one giant meditation that helps you connect with that inner self which you've lost in the fray of modern society. And it brings BACK mental health.

I'm a person who reads a book or watches a movie, and can pick up the same movie or book a year later and watch it again with enjoyment! There is always something I missed, or didn't "get" because I'm in a different headspace this time around.

There are many reasons a peregrino may walk a 2d, 3d, 4th time.
I'd like to walk once to pick up the toilet paper that ugly visitors leave laying around because they're too lazy to clean up after themselves!
I'd like to walk once to paint arrows and clean waymarks.
I'd like to walk once to clean and paint refugios that really need it. I'm just not sure how that would be received?
I'd like to walk once to visit every single church and see all of the wonderful art that is slowly disappearing.
I'd like to walk once without staying in refugios, but just sleeping under the milky way.
I'd like to walk in every season, because I LOVE Spain and want to see her in every gown!

There are so many reasons to walk.... the last time I walked to decide whether or not to stay with my current partner. I decided to leave him on the meseta, where I had a total emotional blowout. This was a turning point, the point where he realized how serious our problems were. Now, after 13 years, we're finally in counseling and will get married. It was life-changing for me and for him.

Anyway, now I'm blathering... I personally loved Annette's post and could identify with her feelings. Thank you for this... and yes, I agree...


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Camino(s) past & future
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Maybe people walk the Camino Frances again and again because they really enjoyed it, maybe they loved the scenery and would like to see it again, maybe they enjoyed meeing lots of pilgrims and having a drink or a shared meal with them, maybe they liked the different options of accommodation available and how many there were - they could plan a 15km day or a 30km day and be assured of finding a place to stay, maybe they want to do it again and stay in towns different than last time, maybe they want to prove to themselves that they are stronger or better prepared this time around, maybe they liked that it is so well-marked they didn't really have to worry about lugging a heavy guidebook, maybe some people aren't as confident to take a route not well-traveled or way-marked, maybe some pilgrims had personal reflections/revelations about themselves on route that they feel they need to recapture or reconfirm, maybe its no one's business why others do what they do....
thanks for all your sharing, i have just returned from my first camino frances, starting in st. jean de port, and toward the end i believe i felt i would never repeat this particular camino, but maby the camino norte. i have been back home now for 2 days...i spent a pleasureable 39 days walking, some days 30km, other days only 8 km, depending on my mood, the day, my feet etc. Yet, i already can see why some pilgrims, might become a "repeat offender"...i felt the meseta, might be nice biking through the next time, then walking all other areas, possibly taking more of the alternative routes, and yes, being familiar with the path, can allow one to relax more the second time around. The one change i would do, is bring a tent the next time. i starting on september 25, ending my camino on november 1st...many of those days, sleeping under the stars outside would be a welcom relieve from some of the alberque's. Yet many of the alberques i loved enuf to return, as the space was such a magical experience. So i quess what im attempting to say, is i would consider doing the same camino again, but altering the routes, and way i walk, and lets be honest, who woudlnt want to see again and again the many beautiful sights on the Camino Francis? Wow! i know i would not like to walk in summer. The september to november season would most likely always be my choice, with the exception of maby a spring walk. My most difficult moments on the camino was not the walking or the meseta, or the blisters, or the was some of the other pilgrims. The older middle age men who walked were the most difficult for me to enjoy, and i am an older middle age male! Im a laid back 50 year old hippie artist, with a joyful approach to life, and toward the camino. but many of my comrades in this age bracket, just seemed way tooooo uptight.....not joyful.....not happy, as if maby they slaved at a job all their life, and now finally they were doing what they wanted to do....well for me, i never wanted to become a person like that, and have not. I have always lived my life without any rules, or major responsibilites. No children, no job i hated, (if i did, i would of course quit) Throughout my walk, i kept asking myself why do i not tolerate these types of people well, and i have yet to have an answer for that. Im just glad im me, and not them. I prayed for love, the entire walk, as i did not enjoy judging these guys, but they bugged me until the very end, and i finally had a blowout with an uptight frenchman....he thought i lived my life as if i were a teenager..and well....what a nice compliment!!! But even with these these "people" issues, i would walk the camino again if called. the nature was soo beautiful, so many small and wonderful church's and building, an amazing history, and even having to walk on asphalt at times for days, only strenthed my feet and legs. so shall i become a Repeat Offender also?...maby, maby not...i will leave that up to the camino. peace


New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Cam Frances Sarria-SdC (2006); Cam Portugues Tui-SdC (2007); Cam del Norte, portions and Baamonde-SdC (2010); Cam Frances Sarria-SdC (2014)
I walked part of the Frances in 2006 (Sarria-Santiago) to earn my compostelana. Then, in 2007 I walked the Portugues from Tui to Santiago (my second compostelana). In 2009, I hope to walk the rest of the CF which I missed the first time (SJPP/Roncesvalles to Sarria).... and if I am crazy, maybe I will join some friends who are camino newbies and slog on from Sarria to SdC again!

Why do I do it? I can't come up with an easy reason. I just know that when the camino calls, I pack up and answer. :)


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:
Camino addict!!

Perhaps you should consider getting a bus from Sarria to Lugo and then to Ferrol to walk the Camino Ingles to Santiago. Two caminos in one trip - and you'll qualify for the Compostela.

Javier Martin

Veteran Member
pwabbit said:
I walked part of the Frances in 2006 (Sarria-Santiago) to earn my compostelana. Then, in 2007 I walked the Portugues from Tui to Santiago (my second compostelana).... :)

Hello, pwabbit, welcome.

In the spanish forums there's a joke about, because what you really earn is a compostela, not a compostelana. The compostelana, in spanish, is the woman from Compostela. And, there's a lot of pretty and smart compostelanas in Compostela. So, if you are able to earn the compostela and the compostelana at the same time, you are really a very lucky pilgrim!!

Buen Camino, with a pretty compostelana if possible!!

Javier Martin,
Madrid, Spain.


Veteran Member
It’s been but two weeks since I’ve returned to the Forum and I’ve added more entries in the past three days than I’ve have since completing my Camino in May. So why have I returned to the Forum?

I know that’s not the tag line for the thread, but it’s the one I’ve got and I’m sticking to it and maybe there is also why I did the Camino.

I’ve never been “inwardly” a people person. I’ve always been a loner who joined organizations and clubs.

What did he just say?

I joined to find out about myself. I joined to see if I could make the grade. I joined because I wanted to pit myself against the best and triumph. I joined because I wanted to prove to myself that I was worth something. I joined because I was a loner who was afraid of being alone.

My joining paid off. I always rose to the top…regardless of how I got there. I received awards and accolades for singular achievement and heroism. I led by example and set the pace. Yet, once I got there, once my name was called, once I had the prize in my hand…I ran as fast as I could into the darkness and became physically sick.

There was something missing…something I wasn’t getting amid the acclamation. Then one day my daughter said something to me that cut me so deeply I had to sit down and think of what I had done to deserve her comment. She said, “Dad, I love you…I just don’t like you!” In those few words my lovely daughter cut through the crap in my life and made the loner, amid the crowd, visible to me.

All I had accomplished up to then was toward seeking vindication that I was someone worthy. Someone who lived in the real world and knew there was more to life than winning the race, getting the gong or shaking the empty hand of the presenter.

This Forum is a public record kept by the sinister Ivar to document my most outlandish pronouncements and lay them bare for all eternity to be searched and researched in an effort to prove me false to myself as the Camino announces, “My Way…not yours will out!”

So, in keeping to the spirit of this thread…why did I walk the Camino?

I walked the Camino to seek a reward that I could show to my family and friends.
I walked the Camino to receive an indulgence for the many heinous sins I’ve committed.
I walked the Camino to prove my choice in equipment was superior.
I walked the Camino to meet folks to whom I could tell my story, without hearing theirs.
I walked the Camino to eat great food, drink fantastic vino and lose weight.

Now, what did the Camino show me!

The Camino showed me that when I thought I was being confident, I just hadn’t gone far enough yet.
The Camino showed me that my plan of the day wasn’t necessarily His.
The Camino showed me that honesty will get you a bed, where Euros may not.
The Camino showed me that angels appear just when you believe you’re alone and most vulnerable.
The Camino showed me that being a true loner isn’t possible…even when there’s no one else insight.

I hiked the Appalachian Trail (2164 miles) in 96’ and have no desire to ever return. The reason: the AT never called to me…it never humbled me…it was just another hill to climb.

I will return to the Camino. I’m not sure which route I’ll take, be it the Camino Frances with its annual multitudes or a lesser route. I do know this…I will not be alone ever again.

On Christmas Eve, I was spending time with my daughter and her wonderful family. We were talking of past Christmases and of how far we’ve both come. She looked in my eyes and took my hand and said, “Dad, since you’ve come back from Santiago and renewed your work in the Church…you’ve become the Dad I always hoped you could be. I love you!”

Buen Camino


Active Member
The Camino affects us in so many different ways. Thanks for sharing. When I read your daughter took your hand and said those sweet words, my eyes watered a little. Welcome back, Arn. And there you go..... wanting another walk..... he's hooked, folks!!! Bwahahahaha.
I remember my Brazilian friend I met in Leon who approaching Santiago was upset that the answers were not coming, and I said, "Your being here is a statement of opening yourself to those answers, they might not come before Santiago, but they may come later on".
The effect will go on and on in one way or another. It still does for me.


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:
I remember one of your first posts on this forum when you said that you were going to walk the camino because you had much to be penitent about. Arn, you didn't walk a pilgrimage, or do a pilgrimage, you were the pilgrimage. Now you can walk the camino with joy.


New Member
My husband and I walked the Camino in October 2008. I started the Camino expecting some kind of enlightenment to hit me every step of the way, and I soon realized that that is not what the Camino did to me. A few days into the Camino I realized that the Camino will be what I make of it, and that it is not this passive experience that you walk into. You determine what your Camino is going to mean. I enjoyed the journey more than I could ever imagine, once I just let go of all the pre-existing expectations I had, and just sucked in every moment, enjoyed every sensation of being ripped out of my rat race.

When we reached the end of our journey, I thought I would be hit with the much-debated "Post Camino blues." I was strangely not that depressed by the thought of returning home, because I felt that we have, in a sense, completed our "mission." I dove right back into the real world fast, not forgetting the experience, but not being that depressed to be back.

Now, about two months later, I realize that the Camino creeps up on me day by day. Thoughts that flashes in my mind about a certain village we passed, a conversation we had, a beautiful view we admired. Even the feelings of tiredness and sore feet are welcome thoughts that surprise me every now and then.

I realize now, that even though you can control the blues, and the meaning of the experience, I will also return again, for those "just being in the moment" moments that are so priceless, and that surprise you every now and then when you are in traffic, in the office, doing the washing, and allows you to escape back to the Road to Santiago...
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I walked the Camino Frances the first time two years ago. I walked for myself and for others.

I walked for my own healing from Multiple Chemical Sensitivities. Having gone through some major changes, I walked to have time to think about "where to go from here" in my life... after children had left the nest... after failed relationships... at a time when I could no longer do the work I'd done much of my life because of my disability. I walked to THINK, and to REFLECT, and to try to decide what path to take from here.

My health was greatly increased as the walking pumped my blood, flushed my organs, and cleansed my body of much of the chemical burden I was carrying. I felt myself getting stronger as I lost pounds. Although there were some strained days, I certainly felt more alive at the end than when I began. Not totally healed, but much better and feeling hope where there had only been despair.

I made decisions on the Meseta - to move out of my relationship and live alone for a time - to return to University to finish a degree I'd started 20 years earlier -

I also walked to pray for friends who supported my walk, carrying the prayers of the pagan to Finesterre and the prayers of the Christians to Santiago. Every step was a prayer for these friends as well as for myself.

I plan the second Camino now to continue my healing.
I'm still chemically sensitive - and hope to heal my body further by intense walking again.
I also plan to walk to SEE more of the beautiful country I was too ill to enjoy the first time around.
I will go slower and drink in the beauty of the landscape and the kindness of the local people.
I will sleep outdoors more this time and be less concerned about "the next stop."
I love Spain and Portugal. I love the people, the languages, the food, the scenery. I want to learn more about both countries. My family lives in the Azores, but went there from Northern Portugal. I have seen much of the country of those ancestors, but would like to explore it more closely.

I also just want to WALK!
The Camino provides a wonderful rich experience that can't be found anywhere else.


The problem is that the pilgrimage is the 'real' world in the sense of our relationship to the world and sentience and when you get back to the office, or equivalent, it can seem somehow like being in a poorly written film .... 'normal' life can appear so false, don't you think?

And then it is as if you are part of a pack of hunting hounds and you have been one of them for years but when you come back and they ask you and you try to explain all that actually happens is that they all look at you with the expression that says "oh, you're a fox" and you never ever fit in ever again ...

There was a Japanese Zen Master back in the 1600's who tried to explain ...

"The moon & sun are eternal travellers. Even the years wander on. A lifetime adrift in a boat, or in old age leading a tired horse into the years, every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home. From the earliest times there have always been some who have perished along the road. Still I have always been drawn by windblown clouds into dreams of a lifetime of wandering."
Matsuo Basho (1644-94)

Tricky, isn't it.


Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (2007), Camino Francés (2008), Camino Portugués (2010), Camino Aragonés - from Lourdes (2012)
Well, well, well, Br. David.

I was just thinking about you earlier this week and wondering what had happened to you! It is nice indeed to see that you are well and have made your presence known once again.

Buen Camino,


Veteran Member
Br. David said, you never ever fit in ever again ...

Br. David...I've missed, as I'm sure many others have, your insightful and heartfelt contributions to the Forum. It was your deep thinking that made me aware that the Camino wasn't just walking the Way...but so much more. I may not have always agreed with you...but I enjoy stimulated discourse, and you're a master at getting the juices moving.

Welcome back...saludos!



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:
Welcome back Mr Horsburgh!


Guys (non gender specific) how kind .. I, too.

I realised a while back that I seemed to have antagonised some people and I had descended to defending a point of view that didn't need defending ... there the slippery road to loss of humour! .. so thought I should concentrate on that other world we all inhabit - bills and buses and so on - as well as move a few things forward ... but still on this planet and life is good and now a new year and a new America (we all hope) .. and 'yes we can' seems to have replaced the coca-cola tagline ... and S.S. Great Britain, sister ship of the S.S. Titanic has driven head-on into the credit iceberg and we are all doomed (apparently) ... :shock:

so, never take moderation to excess ..


Veteran Member
This is offered, humbly, as a response to Laura’s concern that the Forum is suffering from steroid induced competition among males as they plan, execute and complete their Camino. I’ve moved it from Class of 2009 to this topic as being more appropriate.

Summary: Although Laura offered that unattractive competitiveness is primarily a male trait, a scan of the threads on her comment page under the Class of 2009 topic reveals that, under certain circumstances women can stand shoulder to shoulder with any man. It matters not which of Laura’s highlighted categories we examine, there’s every indicator that the value of the Forum is not as a competition, but rather a comparison of what works for any given individual considering their physical and mental state. The healthy back and forth banter stimulates the creative juices in a way that offers options possibly not previously understood or considered.

The Pilgrimage to Santiago remains first and foremost a spiritual endeavor. Of the total number of pilgrims receiving the Compostela in 2006-2007…well over 85% indicate religious and/or cultural as the reason they walked the Way. Therefore, the many “revelations” posited by the members can be both inspirational and cathartic for reader and writer alike. Seeking to diminish or trivialize open discourse on topics directly relating to the Camino would, IMHO, be a disservice to a majority of the members.

To ignore Laura’s pronouncement may have been the wiser option, but then my penchant toward stepping in it would be against my competitive nature.

The Commentary

Laura stated: It is a sad fact that, probably because the camino is a test of physical (as well as mental) endurance, it does bring out an unattractive dose of competitiveness in some people - dare I say mainly men?!

I know this may come as a shock to Laura, but men and women are different. Men will compete over anything…best beer drinker…ability to eat the most hot dogs in 10 minutes…number of chest hairs at age 14…it’s the way men are wired. And, while I could go into all manner and type of research on the topic…that would get boring and probably not be relevant to the Forum.

So, I’ve taken just one page of the Class of 2009 and broken it down into sections that approximate the categories Laura highlighted as especially onerous.

Laura opined about: This extends to Competitive…kit weight…motives…helping…telling of…and (my personal least favourite) Competitive Humbleness.

I then further distilled the comments of Forum members reflecting those categories. The number of Forum members on that page was evenly divided among men and women (8).

I will give you that the men in this section, whom Laura dubs as “some people”…showed exactly the level of competitiveness expected, although women are also well represented, as will be shown.

Overall competitiveness:

Sil recounted: In 2002 I walked with two friends - Georgette was our senior at 74 and I was the 'baby' at 56. We averaged 28kms a day - easily - and walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago in 27 days.
And I must also inform you there are some of us who limit our daily walks to something under 30 km., and who do not seem to feel the extra weight that sends so many people right over the edge.

Deirdre offered: I began in Roncesvalles, and ended in Santiago in 30 (days) with no rest days and no particular pain,

Falcon should have written this earlier: Every convalescing fifty-something I met had felt good at 25 km, so tried for 35. Suddenly they had tendonitis, swollen joints, or pulled muscles, and had to take several days off to recuperate.

Kit weight:

Deirdre recounted: I thought I had packed light (but never light enough!)

Omar immediately stepped in it with this comment:

It's axiomatic to advise on a light pack but many seem to think that a kilo of cosmetics, '"a pretty dress",a hairdryer are indispensible.


Arn offered: I joined to find out about myself.

This is a pretty simplistic statement, but it goes to the heart of “why” I did the Camino.


Rebekah said: I carried my own 8 kilo pack as well as a breviary for a pilgrim priest and occasional other items for people

Telling of:

Alan wrote: If your experience is anything like mine, then you will meet other Aussies along the way. Walking the path last year from Pau I met Mark and Denise from Launceston, Ron and Robbie from Melbourne, Fran and Jennifer from rural Victoria, Andrew from Forster, Vita from Cairns…

Sil pointed out: Georgette walked the camino again last year at age 80 and I'm sure left many wounded, youthful pilgrims in her dust!

Janet recounted: I have walked 2 Caminos on my own, and always there have been many wonderful people along the way who have befriended me. a woman on her own.

Sil highlighted: A very brave lady from the UK walked from Cornwall to Santiago and then from Santiago to Rome in 2006. She was a month or two behind me

Spirituality (Humbleness):

The Pilgrimage to Santiago remains first and foremost a spiritual endeavor and, I would go so far as to say…a religious undertaking. Statistics for 2008, while not completely compiled yet, will most likely approximate that of non-Holy Year pilgrimages. Of the total number of pilgrims receiving the Compostela…well over 85% indicate religious and cultural as the reason they walked the Way.

Arn stated: believe that the pilgrimage to Santiago will be an event in your life that will change you forever.

Horsey offered: Especially as this will be my first time. But, we are determined as we are not just going on pilgrimage for ourselves but are collecting sponsorship for the charity Help for Heroes.

Arn reflected: Initially, I found that my responses were full of bravado, off-handedness and BS. Over the months (I walked into Santiago in mid-May) my emotions moved from silent relief and awe, toward a sense of failure and now to acceptance that I didn't walk the Way as much as the Camino walked beside me.


Omar said, I've never met anyone with a "blackberry" nor a GPS

Omar. I carried the SPOT satellite tracker…for several reasons. It has four key functions that enable users to send messages to friends, family or emergency responders, based upon varying levels of need:
• Alert 9-1-1 – Dispatch emergency responders to your exact location
o SPOT sends one message every 5 minutes until power is depleted or 911 is cancelled. This could have been of assistance when Senor Picasso had his heart attack.

Ask for Help – Request help from friends and family in your exact location
o SPOT sends one message every 5 minutes for one hour or until Help is cancelled.
o I could have added Ivar or Rebekah to the list.

Check In – Let contacts know where you are and that you’re okay
o SPOT sends three identical messages to the SPOT service for redundancy. The first of those three messages is delivered.

Track Progress – Send and save your location and allow contacts to track your progress using Google Maps™ This was really cook because it showed my family exactly where I stopped each night. With the satellite photo option they could see which bar I stayed at.

o SPOT sends one message every 10 minutes for 24 hours or until SPOT is powered off.
At about 7 oz in weight…it was well worth it.


In 2007 I joined the Forum with this opening topic: I think I’ve found a home!

I didn’t make that statement without some lurking and, once I registered, research of the Forum archives. Here’s what I found to be true and why I made my statement on “Home”.

I found a forum that was many things that I needed: Accurate information on the different Camino routes, medical, lodging, history and equipment.

I was most struck by the outpouring of personal stories and retelling of ‘heard along the Way” bits and pieces of what made the Camino special both spiritually and culturally. Equally impressive was a genuine desire to help other peregrinos. And their help took on many guises. Sometimes it was just an ear on a phone, a PM message or, as one walked the Way…the physical acceptance of another’s gear that they couldn’t manage.

Let me close out with a quote from two respected Forum members and a brief comment on each:

Johnnie Walker offered in response to new members of the Forum: please let us all know how you two get on.

Comment: JW’s sincere words, both here and in a welcoming thread responding to my “Home” topic, convinced me that my story and that of others making their Way is important to Johnnie and, by extension, to other members of the Forum as well.

Rebekah closed with: Methinks this comes from a long career of pitching hay and shoveling dung.

Comment: The hay Rebekah speaks to is what goes into the horse at the front end providing the energy for the horse to perform its daily tasks. Much the same as the information, insight and encouragement each member of the Forum provides so that others can successfully complete their Camino. The dung is what the horse deposits after a hard day’s work. Now we all know that dung isn’t pretty, smells bad and it may not always land where Rebekah wants it to. But Rebekah values the horse, for all the right reasons, and doesn’t beat or rebuke the horse in such a way that it stops willingly contributing. Sometimes it’s just better to observe the situation and not step in it!


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:
Mmmmm.... ? After observing I realised that this is not my quote:

And I must also inform you there are some of us who limit our daily walks to something under 30 km., and who do not seem to feel the extra weight that sends so many people right over the edge.

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
¡Hollin!, Arn, you´ve done it again... you leave nothing unsaid! What can we add to that?

Except maybe to extend the horse metaphor a step farther. One of the best things about the end result of hay is how the dung is one of the world´s finest fertilizers. When you spread it out and let it age naturally, it makes the world a greener, more healthy place!

....a bit like the info shared here by the "Old Hands," whose wisdom has mellowed over time. Our friend Ivar spreads it all over the world. And we´re all the richer for it. (and I don´t thing horse doo is stinky. That´s only a problem with omnivores, not grass-eaters.)


Veteran Member
Mea Culpa Sil...

I was so concerned about proper attribution I jumped over a quote and mis assigned it to you.

In fact the actual owner is Rebekah.

So, other than the assassination Mrs. did you like the play?



Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
Re: So why do you do it...?- Johnnie Walker's blog

I hope that one day I will get to walk with Johnnie Walker - or at least sing with him in some small quiet church! As his blog develops I am turning into an ardent fan. His latest offering deals very personally with the "why do you do it?' theme.

Here is a quote that I find resonates deeply with my own experience:
I started early because I wanted to get the steep climb over the hill to my next destination out of the way before it became too hot. By mid morning the sun was shining. It was glorious. As the day went on the temperature continued to climb. It was hot. Very hot. As I walked up a short but steep incline I was aware just how hot it was.

I followed a yellow arrow to the right, along a forest path. It was lush. Long grass. The trees above forming a canopy like a cathedral ceiling. Cool. Dark. Green. Suddenly like a spotlight on a stage a shaft of sunlight pierced the forest shade and illuminated a cloud of butterflies dancing on the path in front of me.
The intense beauty of the sight in the relief of the cool shade was almost overwhelming. Uplifting.

Afterwards as I thought about it I realised that many other camino experiences are just like that: dramatic, unexpected, magical, deeply spiritual and personal.

Johnnie's whole post can be found here:



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