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The Solace of Memory/redux

mspath

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
This post was written last year but continues to be relevant.

During this time of world-wide pandemic turmoil I seek solace in memory to comfort my tattered soul.

Although 10 caminos and more than 450 nights usually in albergues provide limitless recollections for which I am forever grateful, January 24, 2009, at Roncesvalles monastery on the Camino Frances was a very special stop to remember for a lifetime.

I had walked five hours through strong wind, heavy rain, sleet and eventually dense snow up the Valcarlos road to the almost mythic monastery. Saw few people and no other pilgrims on the route; needed to ring the monastery bell for shelter .

As he opened the monastery door a surprised monk greeted me saying "Senora in weather like this!" When asked if I might stay the night he nodded and suggested I relax on a nearby bench while he would prepare tea.

Protected at last from the bone-chilling snow storm sitting in relative warmth felt euphoric; I would be the only pilgrim in the old winter albergue opposite the cloister entrance.

Sipping our soothing (hot!!) tea the monk and I shared a long philosophic chat pondering the
necessity of both courage and hope to overcome difficulty. He then stamped my Credential and kindly invited me to the traditional evening benediction.

As always it was lovely. The service was held in the ancient Romanesque church (wonderfully heated!!) in front of the magnificent silvered sculpture of the Virgin. Three monks assisted and called me by name to stand with them at the altar.

In retrospect how special it was that snowy night to be the single pilgrim where crowds have stood throughout time.

...May we all sense the courage and hope necessary to overcome the current difficulties and
...Might thankful crowds soon again stand for their blessing at that special altar during this Holy Year.

"...but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope."
Romans 5:3-4



Margaret Meredith
 
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William Garza

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances, The Jakobsweg
This post was written last year but continues to be relevant.

During this time of world-wide pandemic turmoil I seek solace in memory to comfort my tattered soul.

Although 10 caminos and more than 450 nights usually in albergues provide limitless recollections for which I am forever grateful, January 24, 2009, at Roncesvalles monastery on the Camino Frances was a very special stop to remember for a lifetime.

I had walked five hours through strong wind, heavy rain, sleet and eventually dense snow up the Valcarlos road to the almost mythic monastery. Saw few people and no other pilgrims on the route; needed to ring the monastery bell for shelter .

As he opened the monastery door a surprised monk greeted me saying "Senora in weather like this!" When asked if I might stay the night he nodded and suggested I relax on a nearby bench while he would prepare tea.

Protected at last from the bone-chilling snow storm sitting in relative warmth felt euphoric; I would be the only pilgrim in the old winter albergue opposite the cloister entrance.

Sipping our soothing (hot!!) tea the monk and I shared a long philosophic chat pondering the
necessity of both courage and hope to overcome difficulty. He then stamped my Credential and kindly invited me to the traditional evening benediction.

As always it was lovely. The service was held in the ancient Romanesque church (wonderfully heated!!) in front of the magnificent silvered sculpture of the Virgin. Three monks assisted and called me by name to stand with them at the altar.

In retrospect how special it was that snowy night to be the single pilgrim where crowds have stood throughout time.

...May we all sense the courage and hope necessary to overcome the current difficulties and
...Might thankful crowds soon again stand for their blessing at that special altar during this Holy Year.

"...but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope."
Romans 5:3-4



Margaret Meredith
Beautiful
 
Time of past OR future Camino
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean May/June 2017. Plans to walk Porto 2020
Hola Margaret a wonderful memory. Maybe you should consider collating all your winter Camino experiences (the time at Foncebadon stranded for three or more days comes to mind). Best wishes!
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
2017 Camino Frances,
2019 C. Portuguese (inland).
The Camino holds special memories for me too, as it does for you Margaret, and no doubt many others on this forum. A lot has changed since my wife and I did the seemingly impossible Frances in 2019. More than I care to list. We’ve had to deal with many more seemingly impossible things since then. Life’s imperfections at times overwhelm those good memories. But like you, I insist on not letting them go, hard as it is sometimes.
Covid has robbed us of two very precious years. I hope this year and next year makes up for all the losses and I hope our paths cross on my next Camino and that you can add to those fond memories stored within.
 

kohara

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances 2014
Portugues 2019
Del Norte 2020
A wonderful memory and blessing, thanks for sharing.
On a similar vein, a quote from peace activist and Zen Buddhist Thich Nhat Hanh who departed this world last Friday. He saw much suffering in his own native Vietnam, the monks being persecuted for not taking sides - yet he was a shining light of peace and compassion.
“Suffering is not enough. Life is both dreadful and wonderful. To practice meditation is to be in touch with both aspects. Smiling means that we are ourselves, that we have sovereignty over ourselves, that we are not drowned in forgetfulness. How can I smile when I am filled with so much sorrow?
It is natural— you need to smile to your sorrow
because you are more than your sorrow.”
 

Bugsy

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Next one ... ASAP
This post was written last year but continues to be relevant.

During this time of world-wide pandemic turmoil I seek solace in memory to comfort my tattered soul.

Although 10 caminos and more than 450 nights usually in albergues provide limitless recollections for which I am forever grateful, January 24, 2009, at Roncesvalles monastery on the Camino Frances was a very special stop to remember for a lifetime.

I had walked five hours through strong wind, heavy rain, sleet and eventually dense snow up the Valcarlos road to the almost mythic monastery. Saw few people and no other pilgrims on the route; needed to ring the monastery bell for shelter .

As he opened the monastery door a surprised monk greeted me saying "Senora in weather like this!" When asked if I might stay the night he nodded and suggested I relax on a nearby bench while he would prepare tea.

Protected at last from the bone-chilling snow storm sitting in relative warmth felt euphoric; I would be the only pilgrim in the old winter albergue opposite the cloister entrance.

Sipping our soothing (hot!!) tea the monk and I shared a long philosophic chat pondering the
necessity of both courage and hope to overcome difficulty. He then stamped my Credential and kindly invited me to the traditional evening benediction.

As always it was lovely. The service was held in the ancient Romanesque church (wonderfully heated!!) in front of the magnificent silvered sculpture of the Virgin. Three monks assisted and called me by name to stand with them at the altar.

In retrospect how special it was that snowy night to be the single pilgrim where crowds have stood throughout time.

...May we all sense the courage and hope necessary to overcome the current difficulties and
...Might thankful crowds soon again stand for their blessing at that special altar during this Holy Year.

"...but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope."
Romans 5:3-4



Margaret Meredith
What’s beautiful memory. Is your name Margaret Meredith?
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
What’s beautiful memory. Is your name Margaret Meredith?
Yes. Here I log-on as MSPath while at times signing posts as MM or Margaret Meredith, the names on my birth certificate. Nevertheless, I have always been called Meredith, which means 'keeper of the sea'.
On my first camino in 2004 when unsuccessfully attempting to clarify the pronunciation of my name as Mere Edith many pilgrims often thought that I was a nun!! Henceforth on the camino I simply used Margaret .
 
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Bugsy

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Next one ... ASAP
Yes. Here I log-on as MSPath while at times signing posts as MM or Margaret Meredith, the names on my birth certificate. Nevertheless, I have always been called Meredith, which means 'keeper of the sea'.
On my first camino in 2004 when unsuccessfully attempting to clarify the pronunciation of my name as Mere Edith many pilgrims often thought that I was a nun!! Henceforth on the camino I simply used Margaret .
I also am Margaret Meredith. And I go by Meredith. On Camino 2017 I ran into much difficulty with pronunciation of my name. Many called me Mary. My nickname is Bugsy and I usually try to go with that name but that seemed to confuse people even more. Haha!
God bless you and yours and may we chat again!
Margaret Meredith - Bugsy
 

samba

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Francesca(2007),de la Plata /Sanabres ( May 2015),Mozarabe ( 2016) Norte (2018)
La Lana((2019)
This post was written last year but continues to be relevant.

During this time of world-wide pandemic turmoil I seek solace in memory to comfort my tattered soul.

Although 10 caminos and more than 450 nights usually in albergues provide limitless recollections for which I am forever grateful, January 24, 2009, at Roncesvalles monastery on the Camino Frances was a very special stop to remember for a lifetime.

I had walked five hours through strong wind, heavy rain, sleet and eventually dense snow up the Valcarlos road to the almost mythic monastery. Saw few people and no other pilgrims on the route; needed to ring the monastery bell for shelter .

As he opened the monastery door a surprised monk greeted me saying "Senora in weather like this!" When asked if I might stay the night he nodded and suggested I relax on a nearby bench while he would prepare tea.

Protected at last from the bone-chilling snow storm sitting in relative warmth felt euphoric; I would be the only pilgrim in the old winter albergue opposite the cloister entrance.

Sipping our soothing (hot!!) tea the monk and I shared a long philosophic chat pondering the
necessity of both courage and hope to overcome difficulty. He then stamped my Credential and kindly invited me to the traditional evening benediction.

As always it was lovely. The service was held in the ancient Romanesque church (wonderfully heated!!) in front of the magnificent silvered sculpture of the Virgin. Three monks assisted and called me by name to stand with them at the altar.

In retrospect how special it was that snowy night to be the single pilgrim where crowds have stood throughout time.

...May we all sense the courage and hope necessary to overcome the current difficulties and
...Might thankful crowds soon again stand for their blessing at that special altar during this Holy Year.

"...but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope."
Romans 5:3-4



Margaret Meredith
Thank you for your written memory .Lifted my spirits and reminded me of the special experiences caminoing since 2007 , my first . Will go through journals now and relive memories and just be grateful I have them while waiting here in Australia yearning to be away . Be thankful and gather all the lovely bits . Buen Camino to us both for the here and now
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Thank you for your written memory .Lifted my spirits and reminded me of the special experiences caminoing since 2007 , my first . Will go through journals now and relive memories and just be grateful I have them while waiting here in Australia yearning to be away . Be thankful and gather all the lovely bits . Buen Camino to us both for the here and now
Samba,
Indeed. Although now at 82 I am no longer able to hike long distance I am very thankful to be alive and to remember.
 

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