Fall Colors


Sumac beginning it's Fall colors.
Sumac beginning it’s Fall colors.


Fall is such a great season.  I know that some folks are lamenting the end of the Summer.  It is special for sure but I’ve always enjoyed Fall the best.  Something about the clarity of the air and nature’s fireworks show of the hardwood leaves.  Of course there is the adventure of hunting season.

I’m at the hospital now for my treatment.  But on the way I have a Fall thing to report.  The filbert nuts and it’s wild version the hazelnuts are ripe now and the crows are having a field day.  They fly the nuts to the roads and put them down so that the cars and trucks crack them.  Works slick.  And they don’t just put them anywhere on the road but just in the track where the tires roll.  Amazing example of animals using tools.

OK, so yesterday we reached our goal at the Indiegogo site.  Way to go everyone!  That felt good believe me.  It is so gratifying to have all those folks out there supporting our effort.

I Skyped with Gracie this AM and will try to get back to her as soon as I am done here.  I had to give up on frying bacon and Skyping this morning as too hard.  I learned that it is going to be her first Halloween ever as the Aussies don’t celebrate it down under there.  She was showing me her skeleton costume which only cost five quid.  Maybe I will finally find out what a quid is.

OK, time to go for today.  It’s been great being with you.  Love, Phil.

Friday is Coming

Good day.  I have to talk with you a minute about the Phil’s Camino Documentary fund raising.  Let’s get that out of the way so we can play.  This Friday is the last day for the Indiegogo fund raiser.  Please put on your thinking cap and maybe come up with one more idea that would help.  We are almost at the goal and it would be great to get there.  Fortunately, we will get the funds even though we fall short but this endeavor is expensive and still there are more steps to go and more funds needed.  We have to keep the pressure on; it’s a long road.  Here is the link:



Also, there is a bank account that will accept checks if they are brought in or mailed in. This at the local Vashon bank.  Just make the check out to “Phil Volker Documentary”.  Here is there mailing address:

US Bank, P. O. Box 428,  Vashon, WA 98070 USA

(bank phone number 206 463 9161)


OK,  this morning I am off to walk again in a few minutes.  It’s lightly raining here.  But yesterday was sunny and warm and Kelly and I were out there.  So here are some pics of him here at the ranch and other stuff yesterday.  Sorry, we ran short on play time today but we have forever, right?   Love, Phil.

image image image image image

Kelly's Boots and mine too.
Kelly’s Boots and mine too.



This Is Exactly Why….

Mary Margret and the Skipper.
Mary Margret and the Skipper.


“Hola Cherry! Great to see you here guest-blogging and with a perfect Camino vignette.”  This is exactly why we have Mary Margret on board.  Vignette?  Man, If I would have known that we were writing vignettes around here I would have asked for a raise a long time ago!

vignette – noun 1. A brief evocative description, account, or episode.  2. a small illustration or portrait photograph that ….     (Yea, there is other interesting stuff in there about vines and Middle English. )

This is what happens when you start hanging around with MM, history, culture, art, architure, Middle English, vines.  We spent lots of time talking about architecture in Spain.  We were talking squinches.  I know, you might have to look that up.  Go ahead, we won’t leave you behind.  And she started calling our foot injuries stigmata.  Only she would come up with that.  See it, she provides the depth, the historical perspective.  Go girl!

Look, I have to to take a four minute shower and run to early Mass.  Love you guys, Felipe.

I’m So Happy Or It’s Great To Have Help!

Cherry selfie on the Camino.
Cherry selfie on the Camino.

Cherry did an outstanding job yesterday, don’t you think?  Even with her funny Aussie spelling!  Cherry love you, just a joke.  She will get me back.

So, today I am off to have my turn to teach at my beloved Bible Guys group.  Deer season is under way, finally hearing some shots.  And the Fall rains have started although we will probably have a few more glorious days here and there.  The rains come, the Californians go home and we all hunker down to start on our wintertime endeavors.  This is the time when someone here will produce the next great American novel or some such major work.  This time of year has it’s own special beauty although finding it usually takes more effort than most folks can muster.

OK, time to grab a second cup and get geared up for today’s walk.  Join me won’t you?  Use your imagination, talk to me and bring out the best in me and pray for me and I will do the same for you, special friends.  Caminohead On, love, Phil.




Walking tomorrow here at the ranch, 1000-1100.  Time to get wet!

TGIF/Cherry #1


Cherry on the Camino.
Cherry on the Camino.


My Camino was full of wonderful experiences. My favourites were the interactions I had with others along the way. Often the people I’d meet became my best friends in a matter of hours. And then family in a matter of days. Other times my interactions were brief yet I was left feeling inspired and grateful for the chance encounter.

I met this guy called Steve on day 31 of my Camino, somewhere between a place called Hospital de la Cruz and Melide. We briefly discussed our thoughts on football, Catholicism and reincarnation. Then Steve shared with me a ‘compassion meditation’ that he had been practising during his walk. It is simple, easy and beautiful so I thought I’d share it here on Camino Heads.

Firstly, you meditate sending out positive, well wishes and good health for someone you love. Secondly, you send out positive, well wishes and good health for someone you don’t like. And thirdly, you send out positive, well wishes and good health for someone you don’t know but may have crossed paths with or heard about. This easy and loving practice can be done almost any time or anywhere you have a minute or so spare. You can do it whilst walking, running or sitting and you don’t need peace and quiet either.

Steve and I only spent less than half an hour together but he inspired me to send out more positive thoughts to the world. I hope I can pass on this privilege and inspire you to send out more positive thoughts to the world too. Mucho amor, Cherry

Caminoheads ?????

Kelly photo.  Could be important clue.
Kelly photo. Could be important clue.


This is turning into my favorite time of day.  It is barely light out and I am on my second cup of coffee, the dog is fed and flames are dancing in the wood stove.  My iPad is at 68% charge and I get to talk with you!  And I have a lot to talk about today.  Firstly, I AM going to finish my defination of Caminoheads.  And secondly, I am going to introduce you to Cherry, my buddy and she has a surprise for you.  So, stay tuned.

According to my good friend Ivette, when you are looking at an artist’s painting and you see an area of the canvas that the artist has reworked and is obviously struggled with that is the point of growth, I think that she called it.  It is the place where growth is happening and has the most potential for breakthrough.  The artist has most things figured out but frowns over this spot but really it is the most exciting when you can think about it right.  It is the spot where a lot of energy is being focused and  it has high potential. And we all have spots, moments or areas were we struggle, rework or fret about, yes?

OK, thanks.  And this defination seems like that for me.  There is something important about it that will clarify things or focus things.  It is something similar to creating a mission statement, perhaps.  Anyway back to it.

How’s this:

Caminohead – a person with the state of mind that makes a walk of their life following the possibilities that the Camino de Santiago teaches.

Wow, I’ve just spent a lot of time working and reworking that here but that looks pretty darn good for now.  Let’s let it rest for a while.

OK, next, and I am really excited about this, I would like to unveil a new feature.  Every Friday we will have a quality post from a guest writer from around the world.  This will be called TGIF for Thank God It’s Friday.  It is the celebration of the end of the work week and maybe more importantly a place for some fresh ideas and rememberances from some serious  Caminoheads.  Serious meaning  that they are generally very joyful and exuberant.  See how it works?

So tomorrow if everything goes well, we will hear from Cherry from Australia.  Although she is currently on the road involved in a huge fact finding mission in Eastern Europe, I  think.  She is hard to keep up with!  Anyway, she is going to talk with you about something important that she learned on the Camino.

OK, love, Felipe.


I don't know where this is but does it really matter.
I don’t know where this is but does it really matter.


I promise that this is the last day for this thread.  Just a few more details to deal with.  So, the Caminohead is not necessary a veteran of walking part or all of the Camino.  Although, that is certainly the obvious  shortcut to progress.  And finally, the Caminohead is someone that, as the Pilgrim Beatitudes talked about, learns about how to make their life a walk, metaphysically speaking.  So, being a Caminohead really is a state of mind, a path, a way to think about and navigate through this world, this life wherever he is physically.

And there is no denying that the ultimate way or The Way is following the path that Jesus has taught us.  That is the twelve hundred year old draw to that trail.  That is the reason why the whole thing is so saturated with the Holy Spirit’s magic dust.  You can’t go ten feet on the Camino without some getting on you.   And the pilgrim walking next to you is dusted with it.  And then a whole group of you walking together gets covered with it and it starts working on you and them.  And the whole trail is covered with it.  If you could see it it probably is drifted up like snow in places as the wind blows it.

Wow, that was fun.  And I promised you that we would finish this up today  Oh, well.  OK, tomorrow then.  Love you dusty characters, Phil.



Caminoheads for sure.  Mary Margret and Sherif caught in a Sheriff selfie.
Caminoheads for sure. Mary Margret and Sherif caught in a Sheriff selfie.



Good morning or whatever time it is there where your body happens to be at the moment.  Rebecca and I Skyped with Gracie last night who is now in London getting hunkered down for the school year.  Skype and FaceTime and really all this e-stuff are like miracles to me.

All right back to our pursuit of a defination of Caminohead.  Let’s review:  a Caminohead is an individual that is a hiker at one end of the spectrum and a pilgrim on the other.   And additionally he/she is someone who is interested in what the Camino de Santiago means, offers, facilitates.  And further this is not an exclusive group.  everyone is welcome that comes with a willingness to open themselves up to possibilities.  Yes?

You know what, my Camino calls and have to close for now but we are making good progress and things are becoming more clear.  And more clear is good.  Love! Phil.






Rose window along the trail.
Rose window along the trail.


Hi.  What if we continue on with what we were talking about yesterday.  And as Kelly would  say, “Let’s review.”  I don’t know how many times he used this on me as I am  a slow learner apparently.   So, I was telling you the genesis of the name Caminoheads and how that got started.

Next hopefully will come a defination.  How about: a person that has walked the Camino de Santiago or wants to or is interested in it?  That’s a good start.  OK, I have thinking about this particular topic for a while now and it just occurred to me to do something unorthodox.   I am going to jump ahead and go for the jugular on this and say, at the farthest reaches of my thinking, that a Caminohead is someone that has a longing for God and has been attracted to the Camino because of it.

And look,  in between those two ends we can conviently fit all sorts of folks with all sorts of ideas, thoughts and motivations.  The last thing that we need is an exclusive club, right?  This has to be a club where the readers come together and learn from each other, support each other and celebrate each other.

Well, we made vast progress.   Maybe we can gather a few more ideas and then tomorrow boil this down to something workable.  I have a walking date in a few minutes and need to go for now.  How about tomorrow?  Love, Phil.

Phil’s Camino walking schedule:

Mondays 9 – 10

Friday 9 – 10

Sunday 10 – 11


Caminoheading along.
Caminoheading along.


What the heck is a Caminohead anyway?  Good question, let’s work on that.  Maybe I need to back up and give you a little history of my thinking.   Within the last year I heard a quote in Spanish that went, “The Camino is a drug it will hook you.”  And that entered my thinking and started roaming around.

Then one day about six months ago, back before Spain,  I needed a name for this blog and a few things came together to gel and form Caminoheads.  One obviously is the druggy sort of connection.  There are potheads and all sorts of heads, so why not …  The other component, you are going to laugh at this one, is cheese.  There is a brand of string cheese (mozzarella) that we started buying to put in the kids lunches when they were in school.  They were these individualied wrapped units just right for snacks.  I still buy them and some are in the frig now, I think.  Let me look.  Yea, there we go, Frigo String Cheese and they are called Cheeseheads!

There is a little Cheesehead guy on the wrapper that looks like he is the more energetic brother of the GoDaddy guy.  He’s got a crazy smile and crazy string cheese hair.  So the addictive notion of the Camino combined in my right brain with this guy and the result was, well, you guessed it.

I think that we could continue this thread tomorrow.  I want to try and hammer out a definition of Caminohead but for now the  sun is out and maybe I could get some tractoring in.  Thanks for being here.  You guys are the bestest, love, Phil.