Just A Few Precious Minutes

Random beautiful image from Spain.  Nice.

Random beautiful image from Spain. Nice.


We have be off to be off to Seattle early this AM for my hospital stuff and to met up with Captain Phil.  Remember he hiked down to the church to find my lucky red hat that I had left.  The Captain’s wife is Rebecca’s oldest friend around here.  So we we will make a day of it with a visit there after the hospital.  And then I have to get a Skype in with Gracie somewhere.  Need her smiles on a regular basis and I am behind.

So, tomorrow will be my last blog for a break for the week of Christmas.  It will be the longest that I have been away from you since June.  Time flies when we’re having fun.  So, please if you want to add something to this great trekking discussion please do.  Email it to me at  caminoheads@icloud.com  .  We would love to have your thoughts, ideas, suggestions, prayers, rememberances or whatever’s.  Just keep it short and juicy, 500 words max.  Come on Lucia, Angela, Todd, Father Cesar we need you.

i just want to repeat a few lines from the blog post a few days ago which we need to remember: Then I wanted to report on what Sister Joyce said in answer to my question about how do we prepare for .Christmas. She laughed when I had my little notebook out to try and capture her thoughts but I was on the job for you. Here is what she said in paraphrased form: “If we can find the HUMILITY we will enjoy the SIMPLICITY that will put us closer to the MYSTERY.” Nice.

You guys are the best, Love, Felipe.



Does It Make You Shiver…

Mother Mary waiting for us to ask her in.

Mother Mary waiting for us to ask her in.


It’s the start of a line from a Blues song by Nina Simone which I have been playing lately.  The whole line goes ” do you shiver from your head down to your liver?”  Funky little line but it points to some thing that we should get.  We can get brain shivers pretty easy with all the information that we can access these days.  But what about those rare really important things that speak to our inner being?  Let’s be on the lookout.

Last night due to Rebecca’s and mine individual schedules conflicting we didn’t get to have our normal dilly dally at 1700 and then dinner.  So I got back here at 2100 and built some tapas and broke open some red wine thinking that she would be back soon.  So I got that set up and I light a small candle for Amita, our friend on the Camino.  And I got a larger candle recently for the Lady of Guadalupe with the image of Mother Mary on it and I got it light up.  That all looked so bright that I turned off the electric lights.

I said my rosary and started to contemplate on Mother Mary.  She is one reason that I was drawn to converting to the Roman Church two years ago.  I was looking to find comfort.  It seemed like my whole life comfort was in short supply.  So last night I had this session with Mother Mary with tapas at Dilly Dally that shook me to my liver.   It didn’t take long, it didn’t cost much, all I had to do was figure how to invite her in.   Yea, that’s my report.

Love as always,  Felipe.





Christmas Break


A little corner of the Camino.

A little corner of the Camino.


It seems to me that it would be a good idea for me to take a break from the blog, a Christmas break.  I got too much to do and so do you.  Maybe I’ll do the 19th and then take a week off.

And it is not that I don’t like being with you all.  It’s just that I am really trying to shoot for simplicity as Sister Joyce recommends.  Simplicity so we can get closer to the mystery, remember?

OK, have to go, Christmasy loves, Felipe.


Getting In The Mood

Snowy shell on Phil's Camino, Advent Season 2014.

Snowy shell on Phil’s Camino, Advent Season 2014.


Yesterday I went to two Christmas events, a pageant and a concert and in between saw Sister Joyce.  Actually, Rebecca,went with me to see SJ.  I picked up some new insights on the pilgrimage toward Christmas.

First, we were singing carols at the pageant and I had to write down the second line of “We Three Kings”  which was very Caminoy: fields and fountain, moor and mountain.  Nice.

Then at the concert last night we listened to some great music.  And one of our new friends, Jasper, sang In the preformance and not only sang but SANG!  Wow.  Sometimes people can just blow you away unexpectedly.  Nice.

Then I wanted to report on what Sister Joyce said in answer to my question about how do we prepare for .Christmas.  She laughed when I had my little notebook out to try and capture her thoughts but I was on the job for you.  Here is what she said in paraphrased form: “If we can find the HUMILITY we will enjoy the SIMPLICITY that will put us closer to the MYSTERY.”   Nice.

OK, it all continues.  Take time for the important things, love, Felipe.



Hotel California Back In The News



This last week I spent time writing my chapter for the Hotel California Writing Project.  Laura from Barcelona signed us up to participate.  It was her brain child I think.  The “Hotel” was our walking (and laughing and crying group) back east of Burgos.  And the “Project” is a series of chapters that are written by “Hotel” members.  Laura wrote the first one and then passed it on, then that person wrote a second chapter to continue the story.  So whenever you got it you had to contend with the plot as established and continue.  I am chapter five so the action was rolling along pretty well by the time I got it.

So, I just got it back to Barcelona and Laura late last night my time.  I don’t know who gets it next but good luck.  The thing is really accumulating volume and momentum quickly like a snowball rolling downhill.  It is really going to be fun to see the whole thing in entirety one of these daze.  Thank you Laura for keeping us challenged and entertained.

I am thinking that this is a sign of an accomplished pilgrim to keep ones fellows along the trail challenged and entertained.  Maybe we can rig up project number two with a little thinking.

Ok, off to Mass and session later with Sister Joyce.  Alperfect here, love, Felipe.



Our Pilgrimage To Christmas.

Take the time.

Take the time.


Here we are with a few more days to the celebration of the birth of Christ.  Will we keep centered and on course and remember what is important about this?  Not that easy with all the whoopla that goes on.   How about let’s give it our best shot.

I’m not quite done with my Christmas cards, have a few to go.  I got off a card to Tatiana and family from the Camino Documentary.  She was very inspirational for me along with Annie of course.  Well, they all were.  Great people, great movie.  I got the DVD right here, I’m remembering, and I could watch it any old time.  How cool is that.

Also, have an appointment to see Sister Joyce for forty minutes tomorrow.  I feel like I need talk to her about Christmas and getting ready for it.  I will let you know what  she says on that topic.

We’re still walking and talking and inspiring each other and others.  So, buen Camino!  Keep it up.  Always remember who you are as a child of God.  Everything is alperfect.  Love to you, Felipe.





Back to TGIF us!

Back to TGIF us!


Here are some great thoughts by our Cherry who I flagged down last minute to do a TGIF.  Let me apologize for being so disorganized.  But with lightning speed Cherry came to my rescue and in the process I came to her rescue as you will read.  It is amazing how we Caminoheads are still experiencing a certain synchronicity, yes?


I’m generally a positive happy person but lately I’ve been a bit down. There’s nothing I have to complain about in my life. And there’s nothing really that’s making me unhappy. I’ve been travelling for 9 months now, not worked a proper job for 10 months and have not had to worry about money either. I’m currently in Scotland being spoilt by my Scottish step brother and his loving family. But still I’ve been a bit down lately.

When Phil asked me to write something for Camino Heads I was a little reluctant. My own personal journal and travel blog hasn’t been touched for a couple of weeks. I haven’t wanted to write much because I’ve not been feeling my usual positive happy self.
So this morning I’ve been pondering on this, my unhappiness and lack of writing. It made me realise that these 2 things where connected. When I’m writing, I’m at my happiest. And the very reason for not writing was because I’m unhappy. This is the vicious cycle of depression.

And today I’m breaking that cycle. I’m going to force myself to write. Attempt some creativity as I don’t want to feel down any more.
Cherry’s insight for today: don’t stop doing the things that give you pleasure when you’re feeling down. Force yourself to do it, although it may seem too hard at first. Be patient yet persistent with yourself and you might just put that smile back on your face.

So thank you Phil for bringing me out. And thank you Scotland for putting on the snow for this winter deprived Aussie. Now I’m off sledding down the hill. And later, I’m back to writing my award winning novel of course.

Cherry with much love in Scotland



American Pilgrims

Made Alida's flan last night, what could go wrong now?

Made Alida’s flan last night, what could go wrong now?


My Rebecca says that I should go.  It is a coffee chat meeting of this association, American Pilgrims, that is happening relatively closeby.  I just have to take the ferry off the south end of the island to Tacoma and it is right there.  I really don’t need something extra to do these days but this is a good exception.

I continue to be blessed with many things.  For instance there is a priest from along the Camino that is trying to get a hold of me to talk on Skype.  I look forward to an awkward conversation with this dear man.  I think that our Skype skills are probably matched by  our foreign language abilities.   Things like this are fun and the more effort the more rewarding usually.  Also, my birthday party is coming up Sunday and am planning on trying to get a few friends over and maybe showing “Walking the Camino” and have pizza.   It will be the anniversary of the opening of Phil’s Camino, the trail here and we are still walking.

Thanks so much for reading along as we walk our lives wherever you are at this moment.  It is a small word when we can get together so easily, yes?  Your’re these best.

So I will leave you now to get ready to go and have cafe con leche with some other scruffy pilgrims.  Keep walking, love, Felipe.



Two Potatoes, A Rememberance.

Gracie probably smiling about the potatoes.

Gracie probably smiling about the potatoes.


Somewhere east of Burgos and west of the Pyerenes I was walking with Gracie and we found two potatoes in the road.  They had fallen off a wagon recently.  They weren’t beautiful really, just two potatoes.  I put them in my pants pocket and I carried them there for four or five days.   I would bring them out when we would dilly dally and we would all laugh about it.

Everyone at that point in the journey was intent on shedding weight to make things easier or maybe we should say possible.   I remember seeing a beautiful feather drift down in front of me and refused to pick it up.  I don’t need to carry another thing but yet I still had the spuds.  There always was this thought that we were going to sleep out some night when the albergues were full.  And the potatoes would come in handy, maybe.

Then finally somewhere near Burgos we decided that we could plant them next to the trail and that would be the fitting conclusion for my little pom de terres.  So that is what we did.

A nice little story, don’t you think?  It’s all in how you look at it, love, Felipe.



A Rescue Mission Has Been Undertaken.

My old red hat and rosary along the Way in Spain.

My old red hat and rosary along the Way in Spain.


Well, yesterday with all my worries about it’s outcome, turned out pretty well except for one detail.  I wound up taking the ferry and driving into the University District of Seattle because it was the only church that I could find that had a mid day Mass yesterday so I could fulfill my obligation.  It is a beautiful church and it was a beautiful service and I as usual got all wrapped up in it (wrapped up in it, nice) and as a result left my faithful lucky hat in the pew.  You know the red one!

So, this morning I called my faithful friend who lives a few blocks from there and he found it and just called back a minute ago that it was in his possession.  Not that a night in church was a bad thing and not that losing my old hat would have changed our walk.  But it is good to be reunited.  Anyway, thanks to my friend, Captain Phil for the successful mission.

OK, off to hit today’s trail.  May you find something lost, love, Felipe.