“Look At You …”

Tory next to a pilgrim statue located at a church in Germany.

Tory next to a pilgrim statue located at a church in Germany.

People don’t usually bring up my cancer situation. It’s hard for some folks to talk about or even relate to. But if they do it is usually with a kind of sadness, concern or obliqueness. Yesterday I was at one of the Island businesses that a friend of mine owns. It’s the end of the day and we are all tired and a little giddy maybe. And he spots me from a distance and yells, “Look at you all alive and stuff!” It cracked me up. I had to yell back, “It’s a miracle!” How fun.

I love giddy, we do some of our best work when we are giddy. OK, it’s Tuesday. Have a scan at the hospital today to check on my insides. See you tomorrow, look at you all alive and stuff, love, Felipe.

Somewhere Over (The Rainbow)



Just wondering how to start this morning, searching for a title and Eva Cassidy starts signing Somewhere Over The Rainbow, hey the Camino provides. I changed up the title a little so people looking for Dorothy don’t show up here by mistake. Dorothy’s not here. Well at least I haven’t seen her this morning yet.

So how are you? Things to do, people to see? Wiley was here for the construction worker’s breakfast: bacon, eggs, fried corn with salsa and toasted baguette. We were making a plan to try and get things organized for all the pilgrims descending on us for the upcoming Port Townsend Film Festival. The full meal deal for them includes being here and walking at Phil!s Camino the trail.

Quiet right now here. Time to praise God and know that everything that needs to get done today will. The sun in breaking through the trees, not a cloud in the forecast. Walking in a moment. Maybe I will be alone or maybe someone interesting will show up to walk with me, maybe Dorothy, I never know. It’s all a blessing!

Let it happen today(as in we just have to get out of the way). Dorothy says hi, love, Felipe.

Annie’s Film News 9/12/16

Felipe, Annie and Padre Tomas at your service.

Felipe, Annie and Padre Tomas at your service.

The biggest Movie Monday news I would like to share is that there are 4 Rooms at Ft. Worden left for Team PHIL’S CAMINO 🙂 If you have been thinking of joining us at Port Townsend, now is the time! In my unending enthusiasm, I said Yes! to filling the 15 rooms that the film festival had been given. I broke down the total amount and it left me with $125 per person to fill the rooms. There are only 4 left, so please let me know ASAP if you can join us. Or rather, let Carol know – carols4015@gmail.com
As for Movie news, well, we have gotten into a few more festivals, but we cannot announce them yet. Mostly the news continues to be that there is a Special September Fundraiser on right now: for all donations of $100 or more, you will receive a signed DVD that is the same DVD that Academy members are viewing right now, deciding if PHIL’S CAMINO will get on the short list towards getting an Oscar nomination. Yes! The DVD will be signed by me and the man himself, Phil, and will arrive by the end of this month. The regular DVD will start being available for sale starting in October (fingers crossed). There are some sizable bills to pay to make that happen, what with mastering, printing, duplication, and I am still planning on the hour long version for television. The Special September Fundraiser is funding all of that! Donations are accepted at the website, and at our fiscal sponsor, Fractured Atlas.
To make your donation go to www.philscamino.com OR to make your tax deductible donation, please go to https://www.fracturedatlas.org/site/fiscal/profile?id=12789 Either way, know that you are being a Camino Angel to someone that you may never meet. I can’t tell you how many folks come up to me after seeing this film and say thank you. They are moved, they are inspired, and it is thanks to people like you.
We are all in this together!
Thank you for all you do, thank you for simply being you.

Annie O Neil
Director/Producer: Phil’s Camino www.philscamino.com

Co-producer and Pilgrim: Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago www.caminodocumentary.org

Author: Everyday Camino with Annie www.everydaycaminowithannie.com


Three Things


Sometimes inspiration for writing this blog is hard to come by and other times like today I have three ideas to work with. Maybe I will do all three. Let’s see how that goes.

I had a dream in the early morning. It was one of those that you awake from and you are so glad when it dawns on you that it was “just” a dream. It was a quagmire dream where I was working on something that was difficult, heavy, wet and I had no idea what I was doing. It seemed endless with no way out. And there was no obvious danger, no obvious dragon or bad guy to focus on. Yike.

On thinking about it later it seemed sort the opposite of pilgrimage. I suppose pilgrimage could encompass all those things, heavy hard work, being wet, seeming endless. But somehow there is so much inspiration and encouragement that carries one along. And having the goal of the destination gives one a focus. The feel of the pilgrimage seems totally opposite although maybe the challenges could be similar.

Then today we had one of the men at church collapse in the middle of the service. I never did that. That’s a joke because there is a scene in Phil’s Camino where I take a nose dive and fell into the arms of Grace, Gracie my walking partner. This was in a church in Spain after a hard day walking. I just had a long conversation about that incident with Catalina our art historian discussing the details.

Then as I was leaving church I was talking to a friend whose young daughter is walking the Camino Frances right now. And the first day out the daughter shows great compassion and becomes a Camino Angel. She is coming down the last slope of the Pyrenees into Roncesvalles alone and finds a woman in panic out of water and probably low on blood sugar. She stops and tends to the others needs, shares water and food and shepards her down and into town. Beautiful, exactly right move. There was one proud mom that I was talking to there outside of church.

Sunday September 11. Let’s all say a prayer for all those involved during that period in 2000 or was that 2001? Doesn’t matter really. Love you, Felipe.x

The Book

This way to Phil's Camino.

This way to Phil’s Camino.

Our lovely art historian of Phil’s Camino, Catalina, thinks it is a good idea to write a book about Phil’s Camino the trail. So, I was working on it this AM. I sent out about fifty introductions to the idea. I have about two hundred pilgrims on my master list, well those are the ones that I have email addresses for anyway. So, we are starting to contact you. The idea is to collect some thoughts from you.

Oh,nap time. Things good, love you, Felipe.

In The Meantime.

This way to Phil's Camino.

This way to Phil’s Camino.

Wednesday was such a powerful day for me. This morning, Friday morning, seems quiet and peaceful. Almost too quiet, too peaceful seemingly. But every day can’t be a rip roaring powerful day. It would be too exhausting for one. And other things need to take place as we go, quiet things.

Processing needs to take place. How to we fit new ideas, concepts and experiences in our little brain needs a little quiet time. Thinking of our two and a half year old grandson trying to make sense of Face-timing with grandma. After his visit here recently I think he is getting the idea that when he FaceTimes he goes to grandma’s house or Juju’s, as he calls her. Juju doesn’t just live in the computer like some cartoon character.

Quiet time is a time of contemplation and prayer. I’m sure that means a lot of different things to different people. But to me one of the important things that I always go away with is the realization that so many people are praying for me, wishing me well. It is a realization that I exist in a web of good intentions. The idea that we exist in a flow of pilgrims or a cloud of believers are other ways to express the idea of being connected. Maybe that should be a capital C, Connected! Hmm, that’s pretty good.

Time to go, get a move on it, bills to pay, projects to work on. Where did that quiet time go? Connected Love, Felipe.

I Met My Match

Two leaves and a heart rock.  Looks like autumn.

Two leaves and a heart rock. Looks like autumn.

One of my favorite memories, one of my favorite life lessons was the one about the hummingbird on the windowsill. I know that we have covered it before but I need to bring it up again for my own good and it is a darn good story too. It is the closest thing that I can blog about this morning that compares to an encounter that I had yesterday.

I spent some time yesterday with someone who left a big impression on me. And I cannot talk about what happened directly but I met my match in terms of ability as a cancer commando. It was such a powerful encounter that I am still reeling. I did some heavy duty praying for everyone involved afterward. I am thankful and honored to have been a part of that and somehow I feel on a higher level, even though breathless.

But the hummingbird is anxious for me to tell his story. So, I was on a job in Seattle, it was a rather extensive remodel of an old home. Lots of nice features were going in with lots of money being spent. And that translates to lots of time being spent by the contractor and workers. I was working as a carpenter there for the duration and since the work was more than a few weeks we had taken over the big garage as a work area.

It was hot out say July maybe and the inside of the garage was busy and the sawdust filled the air at times and it settled on everything in there. And I was coming and going in between what I was working on in the house and the machinery out there. One time on my travels I came across the most beautiful hummingbird motionless on the dusty window sill. A motionless hummingbird is not right. It looked like it had died trying to get out exhausting itself up against the glass. I remember how beautiful the colors of its feathers looked lying there in the dust. It’s dead right? Ah, too bad.

But something told me to try something, anything. There was a warm bottle of coke there and I found a metal bottle cap and poured it full of the sugary caffeinated stuff and slid that carefully under the beak of the lifeless bird. I went on my way doing what I was doing and returned in fifteen minutes and guess what? That beautiful creature was long gone! Never saw it again and didn’t have to.

I love thinking about that story, just how I love thinking about yesterday with all it’s particular details. It was different but similar. We all flew away better creatures.

OK, walking time, Felipe.x

Tracked It Down

Annie, Doug Blush and friends at Doug's birthday party a couple of days ago.

Annie, Doug Blush and friends at Doug’s birthday party a couple of days ago.

OK, we finally found the source of the mysterious rocking chair noise in our house that I had mentioned recently. It turned out our old turntable has been going around for a month now after the visit from our grandson. He loves buttons and knobs!

Now that it is nice and quiet I can write to you without the distraction. What to write about today? Sometimes when I am writing for this blog it is purely a journalistic endeavor, what is happening on a day to day basis. Sometimes we are more topical, like thoughts on cancer or spirituality. Sometimes it is directly related to the Camino in Spain or Phil’s Camino here. Or sometimes about Phil’s Camino the movie. All of those things are related, at least in my mind, all parts of my Camino.

The genesis of the blog was way back in May of 2014. Some of the nurses at the hospital thought that would be a great way to communicate with folks here while I was in Spain. I wouldn’t have to send and answer emails that way. I would be just broadcasting everyday. And here we are almost two and a half years later still blogging away with coming up on a thousand posts.

I have found another big benefit of blogging also beside direct communication. It seems to organize my thoughts and make things clearer for me. Then when I am asked questions about the film, my health or the Camino for instance, seems like I have answered them three or four times already. Somewhere in the archives of the blog I have worked on just about every aspect of my life, of Camino life.

Well, off to my day. Fall is happening here. Sweet corn and venison are happening. Maybe some salmon might happen. See you tomorrow, love, Felipe.