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The one thing I should have done before I left for the Camino

ROjeda

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, San Salvador, Primitivo (Planned)
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
Maybe not quite what you an after but review your travel insurance policy, especially if it’s a multi trip policy bought a while back! Makes sure it is still valid!
 
Contact your bank and credit cards and let them know you will be traveling overseas. (Some credit cards no longer require this, but some still do.)

Figure out your mail hold. USPS won't hold for longer than 30 days so you may need to get a friend to pick up your mail for you.

Who is taking care of your yard and or pet if you have one?

Check your travel insurance and make sure you have contact info in case you need it. (Hope you don't.)

Let someone know how to reach you in case of an emergency.

There's other stuff to do on the day before you travel, like make sure you have a boarding passing (either hard copy or downloaded to a fully charged phone.) How are you getting to the airport. What about your car? Where will it be? (Our car battery was dead when we came home after our first Camino since we were gone 2 months.)
 
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A selection of Camino Jewellery
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
If you are walking from Saint Jean, check that your travel insurance is valid for MORE than 30 days abroad
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
OK, I know I'm and over planner / over thinker.

Pat and I have a checklist on the Fridge door that we go through when we go away.
We are both the type that asks the other as we drive off down the road......

"Did you turn the cooker off"?
"The Iron off"?
"The AC Off"?
"I thought you did"!

Then I end up going around the block to go back home and check. :rolleyes:

Not the sort of doubts you want in the back of your mind halfway to the airport.

Now I have a checklist in sections.

Things to do days before we leave. arrange for mailbox to be cleared etc.
Things to do the day before. Set up security lights on timers etc
Things to do hours before we leave. Clear garbage etc
Things to do 10 mins before cab arrives. check all appliances are off, AC is off etc.
Last minute stuff. Passport, credit cards.............good to go. 👍
(we have to physically show we have passports, cards etc)
Then make sure the house is locked!

We're like a couple of pilots going through pre flight checks!

But it only takes a minute here and there and is far better than wondering..........did I xxx ?
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
I've made sure my will is up to date, and as many bills as possible will be paid automatically.
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
Its not so much what was missed, as it was what I had that was too much. I gave away stuff along the way. I had a self wash clothes bag, gave away; 2 walking sticks, only needed one; clothes clips to hang up, gave away; they were not heavy items, just not necessary. I have walked 3 caminos - bring plenty of things for your feet like gauze and I use vicks, if you do not use all, you can help others. I hope this helps some.
 
Hydrate incredibly well during the week before leaving - drink lots more water than usually (ideally your pee should be clear during the entire week). You’ll probably be dehydrated because of the flight / long travel and most people (that aren’t used to it) take a few days to start hydrating properly when setting out for a long and strenuous hike.
 
In 2016, I forgot to mail my ballot for the US Presidential Election, which was a critical one between Clinton and Trump. I had to ask my mother to help, but she refused because signing my name was illegal. She is such a law-abiding lady.
OK. So we can blame your mum!
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
All good things and suggestions by others. My last suggestion is to leave your brain at home and just walk and accept what happens and remember how lucky you are that the Camino has allowed you to walk and share in the magic. We forget, especially in today's crazy lunacy that there is magic everywhere. The camino slaps you across the face with it.
 
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
We found that we constantly needed smaller denominations of Euros.
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
On an approximately 10-week camino last year, I researched whether I needed to put a fuel stablizer in the gas tank of our cars that were going to remain unused while we were gone. That time frame was borderline - if it had been three full months I would have done it. But I learned that we should (and did) fill the gas tanks completely full to minimize exposure of the gasoline to air, which degrades gasoline over time. We had no problems when we returned (except one dead battery).

I also changed my car insurance to remove liability insurance while we were gone, since nobody was going to drive them, and it saved us several hundred dollars. That decision had some complicating factors - in Spain after about 6 weeks I received a notice from our state department of motor vehicles saying that we had a month to either submit paperwork to them that the vehicle was not being driven (logistially impossible from Spain) or reinstate the liability coverage. That deadline coincided pretty closely to when we returned, so I just reinstated the coverage when we got back. So be careful if you want to save some insurance money.
 
Be more specific with my written instructions to my husband. Even though he regularly used two credit cards (MC and VISA) he only paid one. The one he didn’t pay had a big balance, for which I put a lot of money into checking to cover, so we got a couple hundred dollars in interest and fees.
 
The 9th edition the Lightfoot Guide will let you complete the journey your way.
Record a new message on your phone telling people you won't be checking your voice mail for the duration (while I had a Spanish SIM card in my phone); the first time I forgot to do that, I came home to a big pile of phone messages asking why I wasn't answering their messages.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
This may be a sign of advancing age however, I carry a small laminated card on me whenever I travel. On it is: my name, date of birth, blood type, list of meds and the name and contact number of my wife.

I have never needed it but it may be vital in the event of an emergency.
 
Be more specific with my written instructions to my husband.
I can relate to this, fortunately harmless things then. For the neighbor who comes to water, there will now be written notes on each of my plants stating how much and how often. And I will weigh how much my cat should have each day, it is still on a diet after last trip.
 
I can relate to this, fortunately harmless things then. For the neighbor who comes to water, there will now be written notes on each of my plants stating how much and how often. And I will weigh how much my cat should have each day, it is still on a diet after last trip.
Our cat figured out how to "access" his automatic feeder and usually was able to "pick the lock" so to speak dumping his whole bin into his meal tray early in the trip. After having someone check on him at home for few short trips, we ended up having him boarded to avoid the over eating. Sadly, he passed away and we don't have pets now because we travel too much and aren't home to give them the attention and love they need.
 
Join our full-service guided tour of the Basque Country and let us pamper you!
In 2016, I forgot to mail my ballot for the US Presidential Election, which was a critical one between Clinton and Trump. I had to ask my mother to help, but she refused because signing my name was illegal. She is such a law-abiding lady.
Rightly so! It's a crime to sign someone else's ballot. Plus they do check signatures against what they have on file. My friend's signature had changed enough that she was contacted to verify that it was her signature on the ballot.
 
None of the above. If I’d worried about the house flooding or burning to the ground, the grass growing under someone else’s feet, the bank not knowing I’d left the country, the post piling up on my neighbour’s windowsill etc., I would never have left home.
 
Join our full-service guided tour of the Basque Country and let us pamper you!
These matters were not yet addressed:
  • Put your water heater on vacation mode.
  • Put your refrigerator(s) on vacation mode.
  • Shut off the thermostat/HVAC, unless you live in snow country, then put it in vacation mode.
  • Be sure to remove any compostable trash before your departure.
  • Test any skylights for leaks, if you’re departing during the rainy season in your area. If there’s no time to get them leakproof, put a bucket under where it leaks.
  • Ask a trusted neighbor to check your home and garden periodically. Shipments may arrive later than expected, or your garden bench may walk away.
  • Let your gardeners know that you will be out of the country, and if they must reach you, use WhatsApp.
  • If in the USA, tell your local mail delivery person that you will be away, or try it online. I stopped using Stop Mail online because my small, local post office regularly neglected to observe that on multiple 6-8 week trips.
  • Suspend your amazon subscribe & save items.
  • For your iPhone or Android, add your emergency contacts, medical info (diseases, conditions, allergies), and prescriptions/dosages, in case you’re found unconscious and require an ambulance. The first responders and ER doctors will be better able to treat you.
  • My neighborhood was historically very safe for decades, but after the Woolsey Fire, it is now heavily targeted by thieves and burglars.
    • If able, in the 2 weeks before departure, close your window shades or curtains when you’re home. If someone unfamiliar is parked on the street in view of your home, all the better, when you return home during daylight hours AND not pull up your window shades.
    • Program your indoor and outdoor lights to automatically turn on at night in a staggered fashion, so that it looks like you’re home. Include any rooms you regularly use at night.
    • While on the Camino, it doesn’t hurt to check your security cameras from time to time.
  • Regarding homeowners’ insurance, take photos, storing them in cloud memory, of any upgrades/remodeling with high end finishes, fine furniture, vehicles, fine jewelry, high end electronics, fine artworks, high end major appliances, and outdoor improvements, in case your home experiences fire or smoke damage while on the Camino. Also, take photos of your umbrella or homeowners insurance policy. (A friend was out of the country, and she was watching the TV news, when she realized that the house engulfed in flames behind a celebrity being interviewed on camera was hers.)
  • In case you forget an important item, or it’s proven itself insufficient for your needs, and it’s not easily available for purchase upon arrival, order it on amazon. You will need to sign up for an amazon account in the foreign country. In my experience, amazon offers a 30-day free trial period for prime membership in countries that I visited. Use your hotel’s shipping address or send to the local post office for General Mail, with your name on it. Be sure to deactivate your free trial period before the 30 days expiry.
 
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Record a new message on your phone telling people you won't be checking your voice mail for the duration (while I had a Spanish SIM card in my phone); the first time I forgot to do that, I came home to a big pile of phone messages asking why I wasn't answering their messages.
My local sheriff deputy said no. Any would be thief or burglar, as well as identity thieves, knows now that you are not home for a long time. Instead, tell those you want that you’ll be away, and to please not leave any messages until your return. In case they must reach you, ask them to download and use WhatsApp before your departure.
 
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The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Yes, and if you have a lot of Social Media friends, maybe wait to post your trip info and photos AFTER you get home...I don't count the forum here as I still want to see your "Live from the Camino" posts and I don't really know exactly where you live anyway...(except for Phil.)
 
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
CLOSE THE GARAGE DOOR!!!
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
Think about and let people know how you will/won’t communicate. We made WhatsApp groups. We had 4 even though we basically sent the same message. Each group mostly knew others in the group. So many people wanted to follow and we didn’t want to use regular social media. We sent our siblings a message each night but others every 2-3 days. It ended up being a simple journal and was convenient to have WhatsApp because most other pilgrims use it to stay in touch. Also, don’t put people in your groups if they are not interested.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
On an approximately 10-week camino last year, I researched whether I needed to put a fuel stablizer in the gas tank of our cars that were going to remain unused while we were gone. That time frame was borderline - if it had been three full months I would have done it. But I learned that we should (and did) fill the gas tanks completely full to minimize exposure of the gasoline to air, which degrades gasoline over time. We had no problems when we returned (except one dead battery).

I also changed my car insurance to remove liability insurance while we were gone, since nobody was going to drive them, and it saved us several hundred dollars. That decision had some complicating factors - in Spain after about 6 weeks I received a notice from our state department of motor vehicles saying that we had a month to either submit paperwork to them that the vehicle was not being driven (logistially impossible from Spain) or reinstate the liability coverage. That deadline coincided pretty closely to when we returned, so I just reinstated the coverage when we got back. So be careful if you want to save some insurance money.
Too bad you didn’t get the advice to LOWER coverage, don’t remove it. If there is a valid license tag on a vehicle in most states liability is required. You may not be there to drive it but that doesn’t mean it is physically impossible.
 
Check if car registration or insurance is due whilst away and get it sorted before leaving.
 
Join our full-service guided tour and let us convert you into a Pampered Pilgrim!
Think about and let people know how you will/won’t communicate. We made WhatsApp groups. We had 4 even though we basically sent the same message. Each group mostly knew others in the group. So many people wanted to follow and we didn’t want to use regular social media.
I use Find Penguins to keep my friends and family updated while I'm on the Camino. It's easy to set up, and you can make your blog private. Give friends and family the link, and they can easily follow you without signing up on FP.
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
I don't think I forgot anything because the Camino was not my first time traveling away from home for several weeks. But, when I wrote my first book about the Camino, "Camino Chronicle," I wrote an entire chapter about things to do ahead of time. A couple of them--let your credit card and/or bank know you will be traveling so they don't shut you out when you start trying to withdraw money at the ATM or charging tickets abroad. Be sure your immunizations, such as COVID, TPD, etc. are up-to-date. Be sure you either put a hold on your mail or have a trusted neighbor or friend pick it up--same with newspapers that come to your house. Buen Camino!
 
Next year we'll be gone during tax return deadlines so guess we'll get an extension before we go!
If you’re in the USA, when asking for an extension, do you know that you must estimate your tax owed and pay it anyway by the usual tax deadline, not the extension date? Otherwise, you’ll be assessed penalties for not paying your estimated taxes on time, despite your filing date extension.
 
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
These matters were not yet addressed:
  • Put your water heater on vacation mode.
  • Put your refrigerator(s) on vacation mode.
  • Shut off the thermostat/HVAC, unless you live in snow country, then put it in vacation mode.
  • Be sure to remove any compostable trash before your departure.
  • Test any skylights for leaks, if you’re departing during the rainy season in your area. If there’s no time to get them leakproof, put a bucket under where it leaks.
  • Ask a trusted neighbor to check your home and garden periodically. Shipments may arrive later than expected, or your garden bench may walk away.
  • Let your gardeners know that you will be out of the country, and if they must reach you, use WhatsApp.
  • If in the USA, tell your local mail delivery person that you will be away, or try it online. I stopped using Stop Mail online because my small, local post office regularly neglected to observe that on multiple 6-8 week trips.
  • Suspend your amazon subscribe & save items.
  • For your iPhone or Android, add your emergency contacts, medical info (diseases, conditions, allergies), and prescriptions/dosages, in case you’re found unconscious and require an ambulance. The first responders and ER doctors will be better able to treat you.
  • My neighborhood was historically very safe for decades, but after the Woolsey Fire, it is now heavily targeted by thieves and burglars.
    • If able, in the 2 weeks before departure, close your window shades or curtains when you’re home. If someone unfamiliar is parked on the street in view of your home, all the better, when you return home during daylight hours AND not pull up your window shades.
    • Program your indoor and outdoor lights to automatically turn on at night in a staggered fashion, so that it looks like you’re home. Include any rooms you regularly use at night.
    • While on the Camino, it doesn’t hurt to check your security cameras from time to time.
  • Regarding homeowners’ insurance, take photos, storing them in cloud memory, of any upgrades/remodeling with high end finishes, fine furniture, vehicles, fine jewelry, high end electronics, fine artworks, high end major appliances, and outdoor improvements, in case your home experiences fire or smoke damage while on the Camino. Also, take photos of your umbrella or homeowners insurance policy. (A friend was out of the country, and she was watching the TV news, when she realized that the house engulfed in flames behind a celebrity being interviewed on camera was hers.)
  • In case you forget an important item, or it’s proven itself insufficient for your needs, and it’s not easily available for purchase upon arrival, order it on amazon. You will need to sign up for an amazon account in the foreign country. In my experience, amazon offers a 30-day free trial period for prime membership in countries that I visited. Use your hotel’s shipping address or send to the local post office for General Mail, with your name on it. Be sure to deactivate your free trial period before the 30 days expiry.

..... WOW! :oops: With all Respect Due - I think I will go with what @Paladina said....
None of the above. If I’d worried about the house flooding or burning to the ground, the grass growing under someone else’s feet, the bank not knowing I’d left the country, the post piling up on my neighbour’s windowsill etc., I would never have left home.

And that said -
  • Put your water heater on vacation mode.
  • Put your refrigerator(s) on vacation mode.
  • Shut off the thermostat/HVAC, then put it in vacation mode.
I'm not doing this either because they will get into the vacation mode and leave the house (or at least will want to come with me!) Hawaii anyone? Maldives? :p🤣
 
If you’re in the USA, when asking for an extension, do you know that you must estimate your tax owed and pay it anyway by the usual tax deadline, not the extension date? Otherwise, you’ll be assessed penalties for not paying your estimated taxes on time, despite your filing date extension.
Yes, I know that. I've been filing taxes for quite some time and we pay estimated taxes each year.
 
..... WOW! :oops: With all Respect Due - I think I will go with what @Paladina said....


And that said -
  • Put your water heater on vacation mode.
  • Put your refrigerator(s) on vacation mode.
  • Shut off the thermostat/HVAC, then put it in vacation mode.
I'm not doing this either because they will get into the vacation mode and leave the house (or at least will want to come with me!) Hawaii anyone? Maldives? :p🤣
So for some of us, this is not a joking matter.

I’m looking through the perspective of personal, direct experience with the 2018 Woolsey Fire.

One of my good friends from church, who had the same autoimmune diseases as me, was hospitalized for 3 weeks for smoke inhalation, before succumbing. I still miss her.

Houses across the street completely burnt. The 5 condos within 500 yds of my house, let alone another 26 houses in my neighborhood gone, were all completely destroyed by fire. I was lucky. My house survived, and the wildfire caused over $50K of smoke damage to my home, burnt a section of my fence, and parts of my landscaping burnt.

The Fire Department evacuation was not lifted for my area for 3 weeks, and the house was unlivable (smoke damage) for over a month afterwards. Imagine living in hotels, and not on vacation nor for a business conference.

Our insurance claims adjuster said we rapidly quickened the reimbursement process because we had photos and contractor invoices for our home improvements and belongings. We were fully reimbursed shortly after we moved back in 2 days before Christmas. 5 years after the fire, in late 2023, the condo rebuilding started across the street. The residents are still not moved in. My neighbors? One is rebuilding his home now, though stymied by the backlog of building permits from so many who lost their homes in my town. The other owner was required to spend $100K to fortify his soil foundation. He is still waiting for the permit to pour his concrete slab. As for Katrina survivors, FEMA said that those homeowners with XXX, still hadn’t been reimbursed from their 10 year old claims.

The vacation mode on smart appliances that are usually always on not only saves you money, but uses less fossil fuels, so you’re environment-minded.

Those with few assets and smart appliances need not heed any of my tips.
 
Ideal pocket guides for during & after your Camino. Each weighs only 1.4 oz (40g)!
Take pictures of your credit cards and passport page on your phone and email them to yourself.

And some other things I do:
1.Show my husband how much and what to feed the fish in two fishtanks (regular pellets every day and once a week, thaw out a block of frozen brine shrimp and give them that)
2.Teach him how to feed my toad meal worms and crickets and where to buy them if he runs out
3.Remind him to give bird food (and veg treats) to the parakeets and to change their water every day.
4.Tell him to keep his eye out in the front yard for the box turtle in case he comes out of hibernation, to provide him food and water
5. Demonstrate how I set the heater timer in the chicken coop every night, clear the "debris" off the top of the nest box, collect eggs, lock the chicken run gate and then in the morning, let them out, check their food and water levels and throw them some scratch
6.Walk him around the yard and show him which plants need how much water and when. As this is the beginning of spring (I leave on Apr. 10th), there are a lot of details with this.
7. Same with indoor plants (I may try to group them together with a growlight on a timer. That would be a little easier for him.)
8. Remind him not to let the dogs in my mosaic art studio so they won't poop in there or get locked in.

(This is why I don't take my husband on the camino with me. And that's the only thing about all of this he's happy with)
 
So many great suggestions here.
I'd add:
1. Write a note on a piece of paper that says: IF FOUND, PLEASE CALL _____________. Then take a picture of it with your phone and make it your phone's screensaver. If someone finds your phone, they'll know what number to call so you can arrange to get it back.
2. Decide how you will document your trip. I'm not tech-savvy, and someone I met on the Camino showed me how to use Polar Steps when I'd reached Pamplona, but I have very little to show from SJPdP to Pamplona. :(
3. Tape a note to the outside of any checked backpack with your name and phone number or e-mail address - again, if it goes missing, someone could reach you pretty easily if found.
 
New Original Camino Gear Designed Especially with The Modern Peregrino In Mind!
And some other things I do:
@JillGat, I got worn out just reading your list 1-8...whew! Your husband must be a saint; is his name James? Mine is a James, but his extra jobs while I am gone are: 1) water the plants and basil; 2) clean up after yourself. If he had your "to do" list, I probably wouldn't have his blessing to go on the Camino!😂
 
Why? You're gonna come back to 5K+ emails regardless (between all the emails truly addressed to you and the stupidly completely unnecessary "reply to all" ones) :rolleyes::mad:
Because it is a common business courtesy! People
will need to progress their projects and work in your absence so advising them who they need to work with is very polite!
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
Because it is a common business courtesy! People
will need to progress their projects and work in your absence so advising them who they need to work with is very polite!
Probably a difference here in retired folks and people still working. I know I respond to work emails and calls now, but won't in 2 more months.
 
I must stress that I am only talking from a UK standpoint as I am only familiar with building and contents insurance here! I have no idea how it works in USA!
Ah, thanks. After I saw your post, I called our insurance agent and he said not an issue for us being gone only 5 weeks.
 
@JillGat are you for real? I had second thoughts about asking my husband to keep my sourdough starter alive - I want to be able to go on another Camino!! So I have dehydrated it and I’ve made half a dozen loaves of bread to leave in the freezer.

The job I almost forgot about - freezing holds for books at the library.
 
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
Record a new message on your phone telling people you won't be checking your voice mail for the duration (while I had a Spanish SIM card in my phone); the first time I forgot to do that, I came home to a big pile of phone messages asking why I wasn't answering their messages.

For those who still work. Just a thought.

It used to be normal to have an auto responder to the effect "I'll be on leave from xxx to xxx, contact xxx for assistance"

These sorts of auto responders have been discouraged for a while due to security concerns.

I now put something like "I'll be out of the office and may not have access to emails, xx till xxx if urgent contact xxx" I also put a similar voicemail message on my phone.
 
@JillGat, I got worn out just reading your list 1-8...whew! Your husband must be a saint; is his name James? Mine is a James, but his extra jobs while I am gone are: 1) water the plants and basil; 2) clean up after yourself. If he had your "to do" list, I probably wouldn't have his blessing to go on the Camino!😂
Maybe it's worth it to my husband to have me gone?
 
So many great suggestions here.
I'd add:
1. Write a note on a piece of paper that says: IF FOUND, PLEASE CALL _____________. Then take a picture of it with your phone and make it your phone's screensaver. If someone finds your phone, they'll know what number to call so you can arrange to get it back.
2. Decide how you will document your trip. I'm not tech-savvy, and someone I met on the Camino showed me how to use Polar Steps when I'd reached Pamplona, but I have very little to show from SJPdP to Pamplona. :(
3. Tape a note to the outside of any checked backpack with your name and phone number or e-mail address - again, if it goes missing, someone could reach you pretty easily if found.
Like when I went to Girl Scout camp at age 10, I again had ribbon labels made to sew into my clothes, hat, pack and other stuff I might lose (some of it I will certainly lose on the Camino. I do every time). My labels just say "Return Jxxxx@gmail.com"
 
Technical backpack for day trips with backpack cover and internal compartment for the hydration bladder. Ideal daypack for excursions where we need a medium capacity backpack. The back with Air Flow System creates large air channels that will keep our back as cool as possible.

€83,-
I, personally, would go on walks, everyday (wearing your pack and using your trekking poles.) Start slow and build up. 5 miles then 6 etc. if you are leaving from SJPdP, that first day on the Napoleon route is the hardest day of all the Caminos I've ever walked, though I've never stopped at Orisson or just past. Being a little fit makes a big difference.
 
You turn it off? :rolleyes:
Of course, no one will be using it for 3 months while I am in Europe.

The freezer stays on though because it is always overfull with food.
 
Technical backpack for day trips with backpack cover and internal compartment for the hydration bladder. Ideal daypack for excursions where we need a medium capacity backpack. The back with Air Flow System creates large air channels that will keep our back as cool as possible.

€83,-
This may be a sign of advancing age however, I carry a small laminated card on me whenever I travel. On it is: my name, date of birth, blood type, list of meds and the name and contact number of my wife.

I have never needed it but it may be vital in the event of an emergency.
I have always carried an ICE Card / folded piece of paper with my passport. It is a simple Microsoft Word table, split into four panels.

Each panel has identical information. But each panel is in a different language: English, French, Portuguese and Spanish. When folded into quarters, I trim one edge so the document fits in the 4” x 7” ziplock bag containing my national passport and pilgrim credential.

The information on the form, translated into the three “foreign” languages includes:

Title: In Case of Emergency
Name
Date of Birth
Blood Type
Religion -
Catholic - with a request to summon a priest if I am very seriously injured.
Allergies
Chronic Medical Conditions
Prescription Medication Taken & Dosages
Emergency contact at home to notify
- with text and e-mail addresses. Includes an English only statement.
Emergency Contact in Spain - I am blessed to have friends in Spain who can intervene to ensure I am cared for and who know who to contact at home.

Fortunately, in 11 years, this has never been needed. But both I, and my family feel better that I carry this. I usually walk Camino alone.

Hope this helps.

Tom
 
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OK, the appliance thing is real (for me). The last few times I've gone on extended Caminos I've come back home to realize some major household appliance doesn't work. Last time it was my dishwasher (Still haven't fixed it). This time it was my water heater (replaced that for sure... $$$ (it was old)... now I'm worried about the fridge.... it's like if you don't use them they break...
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
OK, the appliance thing is real (for me). The last few times I've gone on extended Caminos I've come back home to realize some major household appliance doesn't work. Last time it was my dishwasher (Still haven't fixed it). This time it was my water heater (replaced that for sure... $$$ (it was old)... now I'm worried about the fridge.... it's like if you don't use them they break...
Yes, my family has a second home that my brother, parents, and I share. Now that my parents are not able to go there any more (due to health) it seems like every time my brother or I are there its something new to be fixed. When someone isn't there all the time, things just seems to add up.

On our visit last month it was batteries for smoke detectors, new light in the kitchen, remove broken garbage disposal, repair ceiling leak in downstairs bedroom, and repair leaks under vanity in downstairs bathroom. We have a checklist to shut everything down or turn to vacation mode when we leave. One is to shut off the water and it is a good thing we did. in November when we were last there before!
 
Yes, my family has a second home that my brother, parents, and I share. Now that my parents are not able to go there any more (due to health) it seems like every time my brother or I are there its something new to be fixed. When someone isn't there all the time, things just seems to add up.

On our visit last month it was batteries for smoke detectors, new light in the kitchen, remove broken garbage disposal, repair ceiling leak in downstairs bedroom, and repair leaks under vanity in downstairs bathroom. We have a checklist to shut everything down or turn to vacation mode when we leave. One is to shut off the water and it is a good thing we did. in November when we were last there before!
Ok, so this is sort of embarrassing. On my way home from Spain (at the airport!) I received an email from my Home Owners Association. They said the nice couple who live beneath me reached out and said my guest bathroom toilet has been running for months. OMG. Whoops! That is like a $7 part at The Home Depot. Should have shut off the water! They were nice about it afterwards... Lessons learned...
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
OK. So we can blame your mum!
Haha yes! There’s a website I can check to see my vote but I’ve avoided checking it for fear I may be disappointed with her vote. She refuses to speak about politics. I am 46 and I literally don’t know if sues democrat or republican. She could be independent or Green Party for all I know!
 
These matters were not yet addressed:
  • Put your water heater on vacation mode.
  • Put your refrigerator(s) on vacation mode.
  • Shut off the thermostat/HVAC, unless you live in snow country, then put it in vacation mode.
  • Be sure to remove any compostable trash before your departure.
  • Test any skylights for leaks, if you’re departing during the rainy season in your area. If there’s no time to get them leakproof, put a bucket under where it leaks.
  • Ask a trusted neighbor to check your home and garden periodically. Shipments may arrive later than expected, or your garden bench may walk away.
  • Let your gardeners know that you will be out of the country, and if they must reach you, use WhatsApp.
  • If in the USA, tell your local mail delivery person that you will be away, or try it online. I stopped using Stop Mail online because my small, local post office regularly neglected to observe that on multiple 6-8 week trips.
  • Suspend your amazon subscribe & save items.
  • For your iPhone or Android, add your emergency contacts, medical info (diseases, conditions, allergies), and prescriptions/dosages, in case you’re found unconscious and require an ambulance. The first responders and ER doctors will be better able to treat you.
  • My neighborhood was historically very safe for decades, but after the Woolsey Fire, it is now heavily targeted by thieves and burglars.
    • If able, in the 2 weeks before departure, close your window shades or curtains when you’re home. If someone unfamiliar is parked on the street in view of your home, all the better, when you return home during daylight hours AND not pull up your window shades.
    • Program your indoor and outdoor lights to automatically turn on at night in a staggered fashion, so that it looks like you’re home. Include any rooms you regularly use at night.
    • While on the Camino, it doesn’t hurt to check your security cameras from time to time.
  • Regarding homeowners’ insurance, take photos, storing them in cloud memory, of any upgrades/remodeling with high end finishes, fine furniture, vehicles, fine jewelry, high end electronics, fine artworks, high end major appliances, and outdoor improvements, in case your home experiences fire or smoke damage while on the Camino. Also, take photos of your umbrella or homeowners insurance policy. (A friend was out of the country, and she was watching the TV news, when she realized that the house engulfed in flames behind a celebrity being interviewed on camera was hers.)
  • In case you forget an important item, or it’s proven itself insufficient for your needs, and it’s not easily available for purchase upon arrival, order it on amazon. You will need to sign up for an amazon account in the foreign country. In my experience, amazon offers a 30-day free trial period for prime membership in countries that I visited. Use your hotel’s shipping address or send to the local post office for General Mail, with your name on it. Be sure to deactivate your free trial period before the 30 days expiry.
I always tell the butler, the valet, the chauffeur AND the gardeners that I will be away . . 🤣
 
New Original Camino Gear Designed Especially with The Modern Peregrino In Mind!
I have always carried an ICE Card / folded piece of paper with my passport. It is a simple Microsoft Word table, split into four panels.

Each panel has identical information. But each panel is in a different language: English, French, Portuguese and Spanish. When folded into quarters, I trim one edge so the document fits in the 4” x 7” ziplock bag containing my national passport and pilgrim credential.

The information on the form, translated into the three “foreign” languages includes:

Title: In Case of Emergency
Name
Date of Birth
Blood Type
Religion -
Catholic - with a request to summon a priest if I am very seriously injured.
Allergies
Chronic Medical Conditions
Prescription Medication Taken & Dosages
Emergency contact at home to notify
- with text and e-mail addresses. Includes an English only statement.
Emergency Contact in Spain - I am blessed to have friends in Spain who can intervene to ensure I am cared for and who know who to contact at home.

Fortunately, in 11 years, this has never been needed. But both I, and my family feel better that I carry this. I usual walk Camino alone.

Hope this helps.

Tom
In addition to the above we also carry a notarized letter with our passports in English and in Spanish detailing what we want done with our remains in the unfortunate and hopefully unlikely event that we die in Spain. Without that information for the authorities you could potentially be buried even before your emergency contacts are notified.
 
In addition to the above we also carry a notarized letter with our passports in English and in Spanish detailing what we want done with our remains in the unfortunate and hopefully unlikely event that we die in Spain. Without that information for the authorities you could potentially be buried even before your emergency contacts are notified.
This is true. I haven't thought of it. But I always carry my donation card close to my body, actually I have ordered now a sign to attach to the wrist watch.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
Return library books.
 
I, personally, would go on walks, everyday (wearing your pack and using your trekking poles.) Start slow and build up. 5 miles then 6 etc. if you are leaving from SJPdP, that first day on the Napoleon route is the hardest day of all the Caminos I've ever walked, though I've never stopped at Orisson or just past. Being a little fit makes a big difference.
That's what they told me, too. It was pretty tough, even though I stopped at Orisson. However nobody warned me about O Cebreiro.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
I shut the water off to the house, any wash/dish machine etc or waterline could leak until you get back…
If you have a tank water heater, turn it down or off, but be sure to leave at least one hot water tap open, so when the water cools, the tank won't implode/crumple.
 
If you are a "pee a few times before flushing to save water" person... Flush the toilet! (I forgot once. Eww.)
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
A friend advised me to get a debit/credit card that does not charge, or absorbs ATM fees (in my case, Charles Schwab). Using that card in Europe, and refusing the "do you want to exchange for local currency" query, I have NO fees for any of my cash withdrawals. Just Euros withdrawn at the rate of the day.
 
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
Stop your mail.
 
Good day everyone!

As I am four weeks out from the beginning of my Camino, I am making a list of all the things I have to do before I take my first step.

Not a list of what to bring, where to start, how to pack, or others regarding the journey. Those are covered. It's list of the things that have to be left addressed or resolved (finances, work, or any other matters that usually require our attention day after day) before I leave.

So, I want to ask you, out from your experience, what is the one thing you found out you had missed, forgotten to do or to leave attended/resolved, once you started your Camino?

Rodrigo
I always wish I could speak more Spanish. Unless you speak Spanish, refresh yourself on the dozen or so Spanish words and phrases essential to demonstrate your appreciation of the language and culture of the country and people that will be hosting you. If I had some extra time I would try to learn something about basic Spanish history.
 
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
A friend advised me to get a debit/credit card that does not charge, or absorbs ATM fees (in my case, Charles Schwab). Using that card in Europe, and refusing the "do you want to exchange for local currency" query, I have NO fees for any of my cash withdrawals. Just Euros withdrawn at the rate of the day.
WISE debit card available in Canada.
 
Wishing I had worried less before departing on my first Camino about things that were largely beyond my control anyway.
I had no real issues on my first Camino or on the subsequent six walks either.
It all tends to work out.
 
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3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
On modern cars, car batteries tend to go flat after about six weeks of not being used as they drain out through the clock and the theft alarm. So I disconnect the earth cable at the battery. (Not the live terminal because if the spanner accidentally touches the chassis, the battery will explode, it has happened). Then on return to your car, the door has to be opened manually and the computer will need to reset itself.
 

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