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2019 Camino Guides

Ugh...decisions

tillyjones

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2015
VDLP May 2017
del Norte Sept 2018
#1
So I know that there is no 'answer' to this, and quite frankly maybe no-one is interested, but maybe writing it down will help me move on!

In May, I booked a trip. 5 weeks (give or take), flying into Biarritz, to walk Irun to Santiago starting September 10th.

My circumstances have changed somewhat and I have spent the last two months agonizing about this. And I mean agonizing. I think about it every waking moment. I ultimately come to a 'decision' and an hour later realize I don't care for that decision, start agonizing again until coming to a new decision. This has gone on daily. For months.

Truth is, I really can't afford to be away for 5 weeks. I lose my job Sept 7 and was to be on a plane Sept 8. The first three weeks are covered by outstanding vacation pay. But the 4th and 5th weeks, I would be giving up the employment insurance that I would be entitled (obviously can't collect unemployment when one is traipsing about Spain). And of course two extra weeks of travelling expenses.

I debate between not going at all, going for three weeks and going for all five weeks.

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all. I have a mostly refundable ticket. I should get that money, not spend any more, focus on getting a job and maybe I can go again sometime soon. But then I think oh dear, I may not get an opportunity again. What if I never get another chance to have 5 or 6 weeks away? I will not lay on my death bed saying 'I'm really glad I didn't go on Camino that last time I had the chance"

I most often think 3 weeks is a good choice. Save two weeks worth of the travel expenses and the two weeks worth of income. Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer. Will have to put a bit out to change my flight, but will still come out ahead. And won't be away too long to feel that I'm sacrificing my job search too much. But then I think...ok, so what route, then? And I get all frustrated trying to sort out a route. I think ok, I'll start in Bilbao and then skip a bit in the middle if need be. But then I get depressed thinking about missing Irun to Bilbao and I can't figure a route that makes me feel right so say the heck with it, I'm sticking with the original plan.

So then I'm back at 5 weeks. I think...it's just money. I can get money again. I may not get opportunity again. Yes. I need to do the five weeks. I can do a full route and feel complete and not have any regrets. But then I update my little financial spreadsheet and look at the negative balance as early as November and have a panic attack. Oh my gosh. What if I can't find work? What if I go bankrupt? I will feel like such an idiot for making such a reckless decision to travel for 5 weeks when I don't have any income.

And then I say, that's it, I can't justify the trip. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money. Quit trying to justify something you know you can't justify. Cancel the trip and if/when another opportunity comes when you can manage it better, go then.

And then I say...why are you worrying so much about the future. Just go with the flow. You've booked this trip. Take it. Things will work out. Maybe going on Camino will be the very thing that sorts the future out. Maybe not going is what will hurt you more. And I definitely need some reflection time at this juncture of my life.

And so on and so on.

"I am slowly going crazy. One, two, three, four, five, six. Switch. Crazy going slowly am I. Six, five, four, three, two, one. Switch"
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#2
So I know that there is no 'answer' to this, and quite frankly maybe no-one is interested, but maybe writing it down will help me move on!

In May, I booked a trip. 5 weeks (give or take), flying into Biarritz, to walk Irun to Santiago starting September 10th.

My circumstances have changed somewhat and I have spent the last two months agonizing about this. And I mean agonizing. I think about it every waking moment. I ultimately come to a 'decision' and an hour later realize I don't care for that decision, start agonizing again until coming to a new decision. This has gone on daily. For months.

Truth is, I really can't afford to be away for 5 weeks. I lose my job Sept 7 and was to be on a plane Sept 8. The first three weeks are covered by outstanding vacation pay. But the 4th and 5th weeks, I would be giving up the employment insurance that I would be entitled (obviously can't collect unemployment when one is traipsing about Spain). And of course two extra weeks of travelling expenses.

I debate between not going at all, going for three weeks and going for all five weeks.

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all. I have a mostly refundable ticket. I should get that money, not spend any more, focus on getting a job and maybe I can go again sometime soon. But then I think oh dear, I may not get an opportunity again. What if I never get another chance to have 5 or 6 weeks away? I will not lay on my death bed saying 'I'm really glad I didn't go on Camino that last time I had the chance"

I most often think 3 weeks is a good choice. Save two weeks worth of the travel expenses and the two weeks worth of income. Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer. Will have to put a bit out to change my flight, but will still come out ahead. And won't be away too long to feel that I'm sacrificing my job search too much. But then I think...ok, so what route, then? And I get all frustrated trying to sort out a route. I think ok, I'll start in Bilbao and then skip a bit in the middle if need be. But then I get depressed thinking about missing Irun to Bilbao and I can't figure a route that makes me feel right so say the heck with it, I'm sticking with the original plan.

So then I'm back at 5 weeks. I think...it's just money. I can get money again. I may not get opportunity again. Yes. I need to do the five weeks. I can do a full route and feel complete and not have any regrets. But then I update my little financial spreadsheet and look at the negative balance as early as November and have a panic attack. Oh my gosh. What if I can't find work? What if I go bankrupt? I will feel like such an idiot for making such a reckless decision to travel for 5 weeks when I don't have any income.

And then I say, that's it, I can't justify the trip. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money. Quit trying to justify something you know you can't justify. Cancel the trip and if/when another opportunity comes when you can manage it better, go then.

And then I say...why are you worrying so much about the future. Just go with the flow. You've booked this trip. Take it. Things will work out. Maybe going on Camino will be the very thing that sorts the future out. Maybe not going is what will hurt you more. And I definitely need some reflection time at this juncture of my life.

And so on and so on.

"I am slowly going crazy. One, two, three, four, five, six. Switch. Crazy going slowly am I. Six, five, four, three, two, one. Switch"
Hi, Tilly,

I know some about this kind of agony. Why don't you put Norte aside for some other time, choose different (shorter) route, change the ticket to 3 weeks and different arrival point and collect your employment insurance money upon arrival. I think it's a win-win situation. Three weeks, five weeks? You'll be on Camino.

If you want to walk the Norte then I would suggest change for Salvador/Primitivo or Invierno or Sanabres. Kind of same difficulty (although I never walked Norte and Primitivo) and shorter. If too short you can continue on to Fisterra/Muxia or even add Ingles. All of them are beautiful Caminos.

Anyway you decide I wish you Buen Camino (de la Vida)!
 

ksam

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese '08, Frances '11, del Norte '14, Invierno '16, Ingles '17, Primitivo October 2018
#3
I guess one of the biggest questions might be...does what you do have any impact (financially ) on anyone else? I think for me that'd be the real clincher on going or not going. I had a similar issue in 2011. I gave up the extra unemployment claim. But I had the luxury of not being a sole support and was on the brink of retiring. As you say, just money. For myself I have never ever regretted it. Perhaps the Camino will give you the opportunity to ponder your next step.

Good luck with your decision. Buen Camino what ever road you choose right now!
 

hel&scott

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2004 St Jean - Santiago, 2008 &18 Seville - Finesterre, 2010 Ferrol - Lisbon, 2012 from Cartehenga.
#4
Tilly, I think you know the answer you want already. If you re read your post you will see you justify going more then the logic of not going.

Only you can make your decisions, and once you have made then you live with them. Don't waste your time second guessing or regretting. The older I get, the less I feel in control of my life. Stuff happens regardless of your best plans and prudent money management.

I too am off back to the Camino in September, when people hear that I am heading back to Spain they usually say: oh how nice, wish I could take 6 weeks off, you are so lucky. Nothing could be further from the truth. I am dreading it. I'd give anything not to be making this Camino, and to have my life back the way it was. But I can't change what has happened, but I can choose to go forward, one step at time. I don't know what life has in store for me, or you. But when the road calls, we answer it.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2015-2016 VdlPlata - Sanabres
2016.Primitivo
2017 Salvador
2018 Norte?
#5
A few remarks/questions:
- If you decide to go for 5 weeks do you lose the unemployment money for those two weeks or is there also risk that you won't get it at all? If you only lose the 2 weeks income and you cannot afford this or make up this loss in the near future then I guess you have a tight budget anyway.
- There is not a full route, you chose your own starting and destination point that fit your circumstances best: that is your Camino.
- The Norte is beautiful, the first stretch from irun to Bilbao is clearly the hardest part (but beautiful)
-If you still opt for a "complete" camino, the combination of the Salvador and Primitivo is indeed very beautiful, you won't see the sea though.
-
 

spagirl

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
frances(Sept 2018)
#6
Im so glad someone else thinks like me!!!

As other posters have said it might depend on who else is depending on you.
The five weeks might just be what you need to sort out the " whats next " in your life question.
I see that you live in Canada. Im Canadian too so I can say with utter certainty that the poorest Canadians are better off than huge chunks of the planets inhabitants.

Whats the rose case scenario?
You do a crappy job for a while? Two part time gigs? Walk dogs?
Write a blog or a group email to all of your 'people'. In November if you are really hard up let them all know. Hey guys you all read my posts for 5 weeks and were entertained or inspired. I still haven't found a job and if you liked my stuff how about contributing to my ' just getting by fund'

As far as EI goes: The wording states that you" must be ready, willing and capable for work each day." You must be " actively looking for work '. . Apply before you leave, everything is online. While not ideal couldn't you use your down time in the afternoons to connduct a job search? Keep records, send out resumes, keep a written report of employers contacted. You are available for online interviews, and could return home if requested for an in person interview or to start a job.

While on unemployment a few years back I left Canada for a week but was able to show that I continued with my job search daily and the decision to have me repay that weeks benefit was reversed.

Whos to say that you aren't looking for work in Spain?

Other options....
sell some of your stuff if things go poorly. we all have too much junk anyways and after 5 weeks on the camino you will probably be looking to simplify.

Air B and B your place for a bit before you go ( high tourist season now) . Tell your friends and family that in the next few weeks you will do anything for some extra money. Yard work, cleaning out basements etc. People will respond to your efforts.

Lastly
you MIGHT just go on the trip as planned and come home and get the best job ever and all of this was for nothing.
You MIGHT win the lottery.
You MIGHT ...... blah blah blah.... anything could happen.Act on the info that you have not what could happen.

Im in the go for it camp!!!
good luck and see you on the road.
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#7
I say either go for three weeks (plenty of time for a nice walk) or find a way to document that you are looking for work those last two weeks. If I were the worrying type, I would think I'd spend those last two weeks on the Camino distracted and agonizing because of the thought that I was losing income.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF (SJPdP to Santiago) March 15, 2018
#9
Take a deep breath, your emotions and choices will flip flop all the time before hand. I do like the fact that you wrote a spreadsheet and did your finances out. Frankly you are the only one that can make the choice to go, to go for 3 weeks or 5. Though saddened that I did not go when I first decided to go on the Camino I do not regret for a moment I did it for the first time 38 years after the plan was made. Life happens and only we can decide if it is the right time.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
#10
Tilly, hi. Well, you are stuffed really, aren't you ;) - if you go you will worry all the time and if you don't go you will worry all the time - unless you can just dive in to either choice.

Fair enough - and certainly, lots of folk interested in this - unless loaded with spare money or big pension I think we all number/time crunch before gulping deeply and committing to going, I know that I do, each and every time!!

So - seems like you should only not go if you won't castigate yourself for not going and only go if you won't castigate yourself for going.
I have a friend in his fifties who lost his job, was low on funds with no reserves and agonised on whether to go for a new job or go to Camino, just like you - he went to Camino, put all the problems down like a heavy suitcase, let it all go - started at Le Puy, and just over three months later returned, broke but fit and slim and clear and relaxed and strong - and got a new job.

Sure, is terrible isn't it - but it basically comes down to "but what will I do when I get home?", which is fear, rather than "well this is brilliant, no job so I can take as long as I like and sort my future out when I am actually living in that future", which is absence of fear.

You choose Tilly .. but, apart from the flight costs you can really crunch down the daily costs on Camino - don't buy drinks in cafes, make your own packed lunches and evening meals - live really cheaply, you will be amazed at how much you can save - and, the excellent advice above about carrying on work searching sounds rather brilliant. If you have cv and intro letters on file in the Cloud then it will be easy to send them out - and if you send only a couple a week you can prove that you were actively seeking work, and hey! you might even have a job waiting for you when you return!

Do let us know what you choose, Tilly, and I wish you well, whichever route you take (pun intended). xx
 
Camino(s) past & future
First one planned for May 2019: Camino Francés
#11
Hi,

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all.
Maybe it's the most "responsible" answer, but maybe you just don't want to act responsible ;)?

And that's the reason why you're agonizing about the different choices, because there is something new, some inner sense which tells you it is time to change? It's just a guess I'm making, might be right or wrong. But to change habits / way of living is always difficult. Anxieties, insecurities grow which tell us to stick to the way we're used to because that is easier on one's mind, but not always satisfying.

Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer.
Quite logical reasoning, but to use the word "sacrifice" looks like a telltale sign at least to me ;).



I'm actually in quite a smililar position like you: I'm leaving in 4 weeks time, flight already booked, but not knowing what or where I'll be working afterwards. (If you're interested you can read more here.)

I also checked my financial situation and I know it won't have an easy time when coming back. Still, I will leave for the next 6 to 8 weeks.

I also thought about cutting my pilgrimage short(er), but I know I will feel constricted when knowing right from the beginning, that I might not be able to walk at my pace, might have to rush or cut out some stages to save time to be able to arrive in time in Santiago / Finisterre.

So that's why I decided to leave and do it my way. Including to feel free to return back home after 7 days, four weeks or eight. But I need to have the choice. Everything afterwards will sort out somehow, especially the question of money.

But that's my way.

I never really care about money, as long as I know I can sustain my appartement for the next one or two months coming. I guess, if I'd not be sure of that, I might reconsider leaving.

Mind you it's not always easy, not knowing what will coming up and sometimes I don't like living on a tight budget. But I'd hate it more not to be doing what I'm perceiving as a deep need in my inner core which just has to be fulfilled.

So I guess what I'm trying to tell is: If you believe, that leaving for five weeks with no guarantees will make you start worrying the day you leave on how things are going to work out afterwards than don't do it. Then you're better of to walk for three weeks.

Enjoy them as much as you can, and it will be exactly the right thing for you now! That's the only thing that's important!

The walk to SdC is to find out about our own unique way, which we all want to learn about.

And I guess your way has already begun, finding out more about yourself and your needs, and your're not even being in Spain :cool:.

Why don't you just start to walk? Find out wether you're in accordance with your decisions while walking. If yes, that's great, if not, then don't regret and leave after three weeks and come back next year to finish.
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016)
Future (God-willing): Madrid, Salvador, Primitivo (2018)
#12
When I read your post an answer formed in my head. The very first responder pretty much said what I was going to - choose a shorter route, probably the Primitivo.
Additionally, can you look for work now? Finding a job now would give you peace of mind.
My husband took a voluntary redundancy last year. We had already made plans to walk this coming autumn so when he applied for a new job he told them he would be out of the country for all of October. Possibly cheeky, but he got the job!
In fact, if you found a job now you might be able to start after your five week Norte Camino!
Shalom!
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#13
If you're willing to share, what kind of word did/do you do and what kind of work do you hope to do when you get home?
 

tillyjones

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2015
VDLP May 2017
del Norte Sept 2018
#16
And just like that, the answer has shown itself!! Amazing, isn't it. (Unless I change my mind later tonight!) The Camino provides. ;)

Everyone made valid points. While there can be rationale for doing just about anything, I couldn't find the thing that felt right. Not going didn't feel right. 5 weeks no longer felt right. 3 weeks felt right, but trying to make due on the Norte in 3 weeks didn't feel right. So, the clear answer is to do a different route!

I will instead do the Salvador/Primitivo, which may give me time to do Muxia.

And all will be right in the world.

Or at least in my brain!

Two months of suffering and you good folks helped me see the light in one day!!

Side note...a strange thing I was struggling with...I always wanted to do the Norte for the ocean view - as a dweller of central Canada. But that was before I moved to Prince Edward Island. I now see the ocean every day. I can walk on the beach any time I want. So that was no longer the draw that it once was yet I felt this strange obligation to fulfill this dream. In fact, I should aspire to spend time in the mountains....

I feel so much better. I will make all my flights adjustments tomorrow. Thanks to everyone who took the time to share their thoughts.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), Primitivo(13), Norte(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18)
#18
So I know that there is no 'answer' to this, and quite frankly maybe no-one is interested, but maybe writing it down will help me move on!

In May, I booked a trip. 5 weeks (give or take), flying into Biarritz, to walk Irun to Santiago starting September 10th.

My circumstances have changed somewhat and I have spent the last two months agonizing about this. And I mean agonizing. I think about it every waking moment. I ultimately come to a 'decision' and an hour later realize I don't care for that decision, start agonizing again until coming to a new decision. This has gone on daily. For months.

Truth is, I really can't afford to be away for 5 weeks. I lose my job Sept 7 and was to be on a plane Sept 8. The first three weeks are covered by outstanding vacation pay. But the 4th and 5th weeks, I would be giving up the employment insurance that I would be entitled (obviously can't collect unemployment when one is traipsing about Spain). And of course two extra weeks of travelling expenses.

I debate between not going at all, going for three weeks and going for all five weeks.

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all. I have a mostly refundable ticket. I should get that money, not spend any more, focus on getting a job and maybe I can go again sometime soon. But then I think oh dear, I may not get an opportunity again. What if I never get another chance to have 5 or 6 weeks away? I will not lay on my death bed saying 'I'm really glad I didn't go on Camino that last time I had the chance"

I most often think 3 weeks is a good choice. Save two weeks worth of the travel expenses and the two weeks worth of income. Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer. Will have to put a bit out to change my flight, but will still come out ahead. And won't be away too long to feel that I'm sacrificing my job search too much. But then I think...ok, so what route, then? And I get all frustrated trying to sort out a route. I think ok, I'll start in Bilbao and then skip a bit in the middle if need be. But then I get depressed thinking about missing Irun to Bilbao and I can't figure a route that makes me feel right so say the heck with it, I'm sticking with the original plan.

So then I'm back at 5 weeks. I think...it's just money. I can get money again. I may not get opportunity again. Yes. I need to do the five weeks. I can do a full route and feel complete and not have any regrets. But then I update my little financial spreadsheet and look at the negative balance as early as November and have a panic attack. Oh my gosh. What if I can't find work? What if I go bankrupt? I will feel like such an idiot for making such a reckless decision to travel for 5 weeks when I don't have any income.

And then I say, that's it, I can't justify the trip. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money. Quit trying to justify something you know you can't justify. Cancel the trip and if/when another opportunity comes when you can manage it better, go then.

And then I say...why are you worrying so much about the future. Just go with the flow. You've booked this trip. Take it. Things will work out. Maybe going on Camino will be the very thing that sorts the future out. Maybe not going is what will hurt you more. And I definitely need some reflection time at this juncture of my life.

And so on and so on.

"I am slowly going crazy. One, two, three, four, five, six. Switch. Crazy going slowly am I. Six, five, four, three, two, one. Switch"

Tilly:

Why don't you just walk the Primitivo? You can easily do this route in less than three weeks, while walking an entire Camino.

Ultreya,
Joe
 

Rosalinda

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2015
#19
In my very humble opinion I would go for the three weeks. It sounds like you really want to go and I think that the trip will help you clear your mind and stress about losing the job. A few years back my husband suddenly lost his job, and we had a vacation planned. We didn't really have any savings and weren't sure if continuing the vacation was a smart thing to do. Our plane tickets were nonrefundable. We decided to go as my husband was losing his mind over having lost his job. (Our vacation was to the mountains in Yosemite in California.) My husband was able to relax some in the nature setting and used some of the time to write up and send resumes. I will always remember he got a call back for a promising job while we where standing there with Half Dome as a back drop. Do what feels right for you. I'm not sure if there is a right or wrong answer. I really hope my husband doesn't ever have to go through this again but if he does we will be walking the Camino to help us deal with it. The camino helped me a lot post cancer last year. Best of luck!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (September 23, 2018)
#21
The Road Not Taken
BY ROBERT FROST

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Sept. (2016)
#24
Have you thought about three weeks on the Camino Francés? You can walk to Burgos, bike to Leon and then walk to Santiago all while still flying into Biarritz. Good luck with your decisions!
 

MethaV

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014 Camino Frances
2017 Le Puy en Velay-Cahors
2018 Cahors-SJPdP
Le Chemin Piemont Pyrénéen (2019)
#25
So I know that there is no 'answer' to this, and quite frankly maybe no-one is interested, but maybe writing it down will help me move on!

In May, I booked a trip. 5 weeks (give or take), flying into Biarritz, to walk Irun to Santiago starting September 10th.

My circumstances have changed somewhat and I have spent the last two months agonizing about this. And I mean agonizing. I think about it every waking moment. I ultimately come to a 'decision' and an hour later realize I don't care for that decision, start agonizing again until coming to a new decision. This has gone on daily. For months.

Truth is, I really can't afford to be away for 5 weeks. I lose my job Sept 7 and was to be on a plane Sept 8. The first three weeks are covered by outstanding vacation pay. But the 4th and 5th weeks, I would be giving up the employment insurance that I would be entitled (obviously can't collect unemployment when one is traipsing about Spain). And of course two extra weeks of travelling expenses.

I debate between not going at all, going for three weeks and going for all five weeks.

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all. I have a mostly refundable ticket. I should get that money, not spend any more, focus on getting a job and maybe I can go again sometime soon. But then I think oh dear, I may not get an opportunity again. What if I never get another chance to have 5 or 6 weeks away? I will not lay on my death bed saying 'I'm really glad I didn't go on Camino that last time I had the chance"

I most often think 3 weeks is a good choice. Save two weeks worth of the travel expenses and the two weeks worth of income. Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer. Will have to put a bit out to change my flight, but will still come out ahead. And won't be away too long to feel that I'm sacrificing my job search too much. But then I think...ok, so what route, then? And I get all frustrated trying to sort out a route. I think ok, I'll start in Bilbao and then skip a bit in the middle if need be. But then I get depressed thinking about missing Irun to Bilbao and I can't figure a route that makes me feel right so say the heck with it, I'm sticking with the original plan.

So then I'm back at 5 weeks. I think...it's just money. I can get money again. I may not get opportunity again. Yes. I need to do the five weeks. I can do a full route and feel complete and not have any regrets. But then I update my little financial spreadsheet and look at the negative balance as early as November and have a panic attack. Oh my gosh. What if I can't find work? What if I go bankrupt? I will feel like such an idiot for making such a reckless decision to travel for 5 weeks when I don't have any income.

And then I say, that's it, I can't justify the trip. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money. Quit trying to justify something you know you can't justify. Cancel the trip and if/when another opportunity comes when you can manage it better, go then.

And then I say...why are you worrying so much about the future. Just go with the flow. You've booked this trip. Take it. Things will work out. Maybe going on Camino will be the very thing that sorts the future out. Maybe not going is what will hurt you more. And I definitely need some reflection time at this juncture of my life.

And so on and so on.

"I am slowly going crazy. One, two, three, four, five, six. Switch. Crazy going slowly am I. Six, five, four, three, two, one. Switch"
I really wish I could come up with the very, but really very, enormously good advice that you need.
Not knowing what your job is about, it's impossible to know whether it will be easy or difficult for you to get another job when you come back.
You still have some time before you have to take the final decision, I guess. Check the labour market, get in touch with the union if you have one, try to talk to people who know the market for your line of work.
Then maybe you will know whether it's worth the two extra weeks on the camino.
I love walking and have been doing four different parts. One was four weeks - full Camino Frances - and the others shorter.
If you decide to do three weeks, then I would suggest that you start in Irun and walk as far as you get. Santiago de Compostela has been there for many hundreds of years, and will be there for a long time yet. You will most certainly be able to go back and finish the camino another year.
Good luck! And Buon Camino!!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
first Camino francais Sept/Oct (2016)
Second Camino Niort Sept/Oct (2018)
#28
@spagirl I.Love.Your.Post.

I know it's not my issue you responded to but this is: sometimes we overthink things.

It will all work out. It always does because humans are resourceful!

Lovely!!!

Hi Tilly

It appears all the options were in front of you before you made the decision? Reading your post, I gleaned you were heading for Del Niorte route from Irun to Santiago. I don't want this to sound harsh because we are all on the forum to support and help. My question is "what's changed?" Truly, a lot of us are full of self doubt. I completed my first Camino in Sept/Oct 2016 from San Jean Pied de Port to Santiago. I did it the old fashioned way, walking every step of the way carrying my back pack and the journey was terific. I am now about to complete my second Camino from Irun to Santiago following the same rules. I too will arrive in Irun on the 10th Sept and I have an open return date. For sure I questioned why I was doing it, did I need to complete the full stretch, could I afford it, would my health hold up and on and on and on.

After great deliberations, I came right back to where I started. I did not consult anyonone (too many opinions and added pressure) I started with the aim of making my second Camino 2 years after my first, and I elected to take the northern route. I cut out all the other stuff because ultimately it was taking me further away from my goal and on a personal level, I would have regretted that and I need to focus on my chosen route.

I am fortunate in that I am retired. Money is tight but staying in Municipal Albergues really helps and I have been saving for 2 years. I am a lone traveler and I have a sense of challenge based on past experience.

The bottom line Tilly, is don't give yourself added pressure, financial or emotional. Find the comfort zone for you and disregard all other options "once" you have made up your mind. Then be happy with your decision and enjoy you Camino.

Good luck. Buen Camino

Peter
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte Sept 2013
Camino del Norte Sept 2014
Camino del Norte 2015,16,17,18
#29
Tilly. If you're still thinking of doing El Norte, start in Irun. After 3 weeks you will reach about Ribadeo. Come back another time for the final 2 weeks I know indecision and deciding is not simple. That would be my advice Buen Camino real
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(10,11,17), Vasco(12), Salvador(13), Primitivo(13), Norte(14), Madrid (16), Mozarabe (18)
#30
I'm squarely back on the indecision train. In case anyone's keeping track. ;)
Walk the Primitivo this time. Save the Norte for a year you have more time. It will probably still be there.

Ultreya,
Joe
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
#31
So I know that there is no 'answer' to this, and quite frankly maybe no-one is interested, but maybe writing it down will help me move on!

In May, I booked a trip. 5 weeks (give or take), flying into Biarritz, to walk Irun to Santiago starting September 10th.

My circumstances have changed somewhat and I have spent the last two months agonizing about this. And I mean agonizing. I think about it every waking moment. I ultimately come to a 'decision' and an hour later realize I don't care for that decision, start agonizing again until coming to a new decision. This has gone on daily. For months.

Truth is, I really can't afford to be away for 5 weeks. I lose my job Sept 7 and was to be on a plane Sept 8. The first three weeks are covered by outstanding vacation pay. But the 4th and 5th weeks, I would be giving up the employment insurance that I would be entitled (obviously can't collect unemployment when one is traipsing about Spain). And of course two extra weeks of travelling expenses.

I debate between not going at all, going for three weeks and going for all five weeks.

The most 'responsible' answer for my circumstance is not to go at all. I have a mostly refundable ticket. I should get that money, not spend any more, focus on getting a job and maybe I can go again sometime soon. But then I think oh dear, I may not get an opportunity again. What if I never get another chance to have 5 or 6 weeks away? I will not lay on my death bed saying 'I'm really glad I didn't go on Camino that last time I had the chance"

I most often think 3 weeks is a good choice. Save two weeks worth of the travel expenses and the two weeks worth of income. Sacrifice a 'full' camino, but will still get a good chunk of time. Yes, that's definitely the right answer. Will have to put a bit out to change my flight, but will still come out ahead. And won't be away too long to feel that I'm sacrificing my job search too much. But then I think...ok, so what route, then? And I get all frustrated trying to sort out a route. I think ok, I'll start in Bilbao and then skip a bit in the middle if need be. But then I get depressed thinking about missing Irun to Bilbao and I can't figure a route that makes me feel right so say the heck with it, I'm sticking with the original plan.

So then I'm back at 5 weeks. I think...it's just money. I can get money again. I may not get opportunity again. Yes. I need to do the five weeks. I can do a full route and feel complete and not have any regrets. But then I update my little financial spreadsheet and look at the negative balance as early as November and have a panic attack. Oh my gosh. What if I can't find work? What if I go bankrupt? I will feel like such an idiot for making such a reckless decision to travel for 5 weeks when I don't have any income.

And then I say, that's it, I can't justify the trip. If you don't have the money, you don't have the money. Quit trying to justify something you know you can't justify. Cancel the trip and if/when another opportunity comes when you can manage it better, go then.

And then I say...why are you worrying so much about the future. Just go with the flow. You've booked this trip. Take it. Things will work out. Maybe going on Camino will be the very thing that sorts the future out. Maybe not going is what will hurt you more. And I definitely need some reflection time at this juncture of my life.

And so on and so on.

"I am slowly going crazy. One, two, three, four, five, six. Switch. Crazy going slowly am I. Six, five, four, three, two, one. Switch"
OMG You sound just like me! That is exactly what goes through my head. I was planning to do the San Salvador from Leon to Oviedo and then the Primitivo to Santiago Sept. 1. Then I pulled a hamstring and can't train. So, I thought geez I'll just go a little later and do less. Then I found out I have macular edema and have to have surgery and stay close to the doctor for 6 weeks. Now, I doubt I'll be able to do it this year and I'm devastated. GO GO GO. Do the whole thing as originally planned. Life is short, very, very short, and good health isn't guaranteed! so do it while you can! Your last paragraph says it all. Go with it! Buen Camino Ultreia! I loved the Norte but didn't finish because of infected blisters so I went down to the Frances (which can't compare to the Norte) and finished on the Frances. Go go go!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances May-June 2013; Chemin du Puy May-June 2015; Camino Frances Jul-Aug 2015;Camino del Norte Jul 2016 (?)
#33
I agree with Maggie V! Go and do the 3 weeks and you can get about half way on the Norte. There are so many people who don't have time to complete a full Camino and come back another year and begin where they left off. I, for one, had to leave my Camino del Norte this year because of illness but I will return and complete it. Just the thought of walking again on this Camino makes me want to get my ticket now for next year. Just do it!
 

tillyjones

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2015
VDLP May 2017
del Norte Sept 2018
#34
Thanks to all. As it happens, I got fed up with the indecision, so just made one. And so I will choose to be happy with it. ;) (And I mostly am)

I am doing the three and a bit version. I will do the Salvador and the Primitivo. And have time for a day or two in Santiago as well as Muxia. Flight is booked.

One of my goals, not earlier mentioned and part of my agony, was that I wanted to see the cathedral without scaffolding. I probably could have coped without doing another Camino but I really wanted to experience walking into that square and getting to see an unencumbered cathedral. That's why the first half of the Norte (and finish another time) wasn't on the option list.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CP Coastal July, 5, 2016
CP Central July 25, 2015
CP Interior or Burgos to Santiago 9/18/18???????
#35
I thought I had my route figured out, but reading all of these replies, not so sure!!!!! After having fractured my femur on the CP 2 yrs ago, (freaky incident), would the San Salvador or Primitivo be too difficult? I am in great shape but fearful that there may be lots of ups & downs and rocky terrain? tx everyone for any input you can give me!
 

JOSEPH SITKO

One foot in front of the other
Camino(s) past & future
primitive / green
#36
One word. GO Do all of it.
Did my first camino for 5 weeks in May and baring injury and the pain of reorganizing my schedule it was the most interesting and memorable trip I havevever done , and will do again !
For the cost of two weeks the memories are priceless.
Cheers
 

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