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The Moment I Decided To Walk.

Discussion in 'Religion and Spirituality' started by Terry Wilson, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. Debbie

    Debbie New Member

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    I've been counting the years since my recovery from cancer. It's been 2 years since my last chemo treatment and I'm still wondering how I could of gotten ovarian cancer. I asked God why? I ate well, exercised all the time and had no family history. So how could this happen? When I took a look back at how it all came about I guess finding out I had cancer was a miracle in itself but I still questioned why. Walking the Camino has been at the top of my bucket list for a very longtime and I felt that at the age of 62 I couldn't wait any longer. So I will start my walk around the 10th of September with a good friend. First though I will be first travelling to Lourdes then SJPP. After completing the Camino I plan to travel from Santiago de Compostella to Fatima in Portugal. I have some questions regarding travel and places to stay before and after the Camino. So here goes: I am flying into Toulouesse and wondering if anyone has a good place to stay there. I am then traveling to Lourdes the next day and planning to stay a few nights there. Any suggestions on how to get to Lourdes (train or bus) or where I might stay. From there to SJPP (train or bus?):rolleyes:
     
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  2. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey Debbie - So glad to hear that it's time to complete this important bucket-list project.

    With regards to finding accomodations, I've had great luck with Booking.com. Depending on your budget, you should be able to find a number of good options in both Toulouse and Lourdes on the Booking site. Speaking of reservations, please be sure to book your bed in both SJPP and Roncesvalles. September is a busy time so you'll want to take care of this as soon as possible. If you're planning an overnight in Orisson, reserve there as well.

    Here is the SNCF website for the French trains:

    http://www.sncf.com/

    As you'll see you can take the train from Lourdes, but there are two connections and it takes about 5 hours. Nothing particularly direct! I'm not sure if you can do better by bus. But, the 20€ fare seemed reasonable. It's just a two hour train ride from Toulouse to Lourdes. I hope this information helps with your travel plans. Buen Camino!
     
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  3. BROWNCOUNTYBOB

    BROWNCOUNTYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Debbie, my story is similar. I was in good health, exercised regularly and was diagnosed with testicular cancer at the age of 44. Fortunately, surgery and radiation were effective and that was 13 years ago. After working 34 years for the same company, I retired at the end of 2014. My wife and I walked the camino frances two years ago, and we are walking it again. We begin in SJPDP two days before you so perhaps our paths will cross. My brother and his wife are walking the entire camino with us.
     
  4. hindsfeet

    hindsfeet Donating Member Donating Member

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    Hi Debbie...My Camino is still in the future, but you are in great hands with the seasoned Pilgrims who graciously offer their wisdom on this site.
    I am sure that you have been through so many challenges and life changes since your diagnosis. Asking God 'WHY" is usually our first human response. I stopped asking WHY. I now ask WHAT....what do you want to teach me? That changed my life. Debbie, I bet that through your personal crisis, you have become so courageous. Cancer doesn't seem to pick and choose whose body it's going to invade. I found out that it DOES NOT under any circumstances, invade your heart. It CANNOT kill loving friendships or memories that you have with other people. I am thrilled that you are heading to the Camino. Treasure every moment, kick fear to the wayside, laugh often, and may you find complete peace and hope.
    I love this poem from Helen Keller:
    DARK AS MY PATH MAY SEEM TO OTHERS, I CARRY A MAGIC LIGHT IN MY HEART. FAITH, THE SPIRITUAL STRONG SEARCH LIGHT, ILLUMINES THE WAY AND ALTHOUGH SINISTER DOUBTS LURK IN THE SHADOW, I WALK UNAFRAID TOWARD THE ENCHANTED WOOD WHERE THE FOLIAGE IS ALWAYS GREEN, WHERE JOY ABIDES, WHERE NIGHTINGALES NEST AND SING, AND WHERE LIFE AND DEATH ARE ONE IN THE PRESENCE OF THE LORD.
     
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  5. ToussantFrend

    ToussantFrend New Member

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    This is very touching, indeed.
     
  6. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    Its almost time for you walk. Have a great trip!

    Buen Camino.
     
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  7. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    "I'm leaving on a jet plane, don't know when I'll be back again"...was that the Mamas and the Papas? All things being equal I will be flying to Gay Paris in two and a half weeks to begin my Camino. Thank you for all your assistance and advice, UnkleHammy. Debbie and I and doubtless many others shall take your good wishes and intentions with us.
     
  8. hindsfeet

    hindsfeet Donating Member Donating Member

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    James, I think it was PETER, PAUL and MARY. Good song, ha! You must be so excited. Keep us posted if you can....Lord bless your Camino!
     
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  9. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Many thanks, hindsfeet.

    I am not a tech guru like others on this site so I'm not sure whether I will be able to upload any pics or commentary while I am walking but if not I will definitely provide a full report upon my return.
     
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  10. Greg Canning

    Greg Canning Well-Known Member

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    Buen Camino James
     
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  11. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Thank you, Greg.

    If you ever walk the Bibbulmun Track in the beautiful south west corner of Western Australia you will come across the Canning River and the Canning campsite. These may have been named for a distant relation of yours?
     
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  12. Greg Canning

    Greg Canning Well-Known Member

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    Unlikely James, not sure any of them were "transported" :) Hopefully one day I will get to visit that part of the world (maybe even in conjunction with a Lions Tour...........lotto dreams eh!)
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2017
  13. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Hiya, Greg. Australian rugby is in a woeful state at the moment so it may be a fairly distant Lions Tour. This gives you plenty of time to win the Lotto.

    Btw, the "transported" Irish have made a major contribution to modern Australia. It was an Antipodean home away from home for many a Paddy.
     
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  14. Greg Canning

    Greg Canning Well-Known Member

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    Irish rugby is not too much better. It's gone back to the 80s it seems with the occasional good win but we have real difficulties stringing a series together. The Provinces have a big challenge trying to compete with the big monied French and English clubs. But they probably do as well as we could expect.

    Must be nearly time for you to step out from St Jean. I'm sure you can't wait. I start again from Fromista in a week. Can't wait myself

    Buen Camino

    Greg
     
  15. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey Greg - Just one week out from Fromista! How exciting! I think you'll enjoy this particular stretch of the Camino. You'll also be in northern Spain during the grape harvest. Although you'll be just past the Rioja region technically, you may still be able to enjoy some harvest activities.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2009/10/wine-harvest-in-spains-rioja-region/28830/

    Is your bride going with you in this trek? If so, enjoy your time together. And, enjoy a glass of wine for all of us sitting back at home envious of your fall walk. Buen Camino!
     
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  16. Greg Canning

    Greg Canning Well-Known Member

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    Hi Wily and thanks for the link.

    We did see a bit of early harvesting last October and the grapes were really heavy on the vines....tempting...but I managed to resist in favour of the end product :).

    Yes, Siobhan is coming this time too. In fact we've walked 'every "faithful" inch' (a phrase I heard from a Canadian lady we met last year in Los Arcos) together so far. As you yourself experienced this year it is very special walking with your best friend. Even the prep is fun, getting our gear together, planning our travel and our stopovers.

    Having someone to share the experience with is fantastic, to chat with along the way (sometimes sing....but only when completely alone, I wouldn't inflict my singing voice on the poor locals they have enough to put up with) and to point out sights etc. We will fall into silence from time to time along the Way and take the time to go into our our own thoughts and of course we still like meeting other peregrinos and sharing stories of blisters etc. For me it's the best of both worlds.

    This time next week we will be strolling out of Fromista. Counting the days now.

    Buen Camino.

    Greg
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2017
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  17. The fattest Arse

    The fattest Arse New Member

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    I was fired from a job that I was good at and that I really enjoyed and one which had the best boss and team of friends that I'd ever had - and by far. Older - I struggled and worked for 8 months in Aldi stacking shelves and learning what it is like on low pay. I loved the people. I got back to a senior level job but with the worst boss ever and I've decided to go.

    But that is not the reason or spirituality to do something as positive as the Camino. I have children and a divorce and I am living in the past and will never get out of it unless I do something. My parents are long gone but if you ask me who in the afterlife I would prefer to be with - my parents or my family - I would say my parents.
    I have collections of junk and heritage, memories and thoughts, reflected glories from my parents and myself and stuff I want to pass on to my children in what surely must be a bid to perpetuate my past in favour of their futures.
    So I need to move on from that and even though I'm 62 I need to grow up and quite a bit.

    I'm going to wrap up my parents and all of theirs and my past and put it at the bottom of my pack and stride out living in that history for the very last time over the pilgrim route and then with an inward farewell ceremony throw it all in to the sea at Finisterre and come back and get a life at a different pace without complexity and open my eyes at last.
     
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  18. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

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    And That Sounds like a Wonderful Plan :)


    But – Did you know that you will be walking past “The Cruz de Ferro” https://caminoways.com/cruz-de-ferro

    And it was here that Pilgrims walking The Camino Frances left a rock that they had carried with them from home – This I believe was a symbolic gesture of them unburdening themselves

    So – If your burdens are too heavy to take all the way to Finisterra, Then at least you have an alternative :)


    Good Luck and Buen Camino

    Rob
     
  19. Canadian Wander

    Canadian Wander Well-Known Member

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    Rob has a great point about the Cruz de Ferro, and he beat me to making it.
    TFA, enjoy what the Camino offers in lessons. Some are easy, some a little more difficult, but they all seem to be suited for where you are and where you need to be in life, IMHO. It helped clear some rather dark shadows out of my past, and I feel lighter and freer because of it. I was fortunate to walk with the best thing in my life, my incredible wife, who makes every step a pleasure.
    I do remember when she offered the Camino as a trip..."we get to cross a country with a pack!". My initial response was "I have walked across countries with a pack...and it wasn't any fun". Her response? "1. No one is going to shoot at you, and 2. Crusty bread and red wine...". She also mentioned I would need a new pack- so gear!!!! Though she had me at bread.
    God, I love that woman!
     
  20. samantha davies

    samantha davies New Member

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    Amazing story! I was living in California, stuck in the 9-5 routine, when one day I heard about the Camino de Santiago. Started to research about it and decided to do the Camino Frances 3 years ago - best decision of my life! My whole perspective changed, stayed on that job to be able to make another Camino each year. Before started the third, I quit my job and moved to Santiago after finishing in Santiago. Found a job there, while learning spanish. I can't be happier!
     
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  21. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    WOW! That's great. Some talk about how the Camino has changed them but your experience is fantastic. I hope that all goes well for you.
     
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