Cris Adding The Spice

I always think of this bowl of tomatoes as being a place outside of the norm.

“Taking into consideration the possible meaning of these words, and the fact that Spanish is my first language and I can totally be missing the point!!!!! but, I like to think that one can understand the Camino de Santiago (as an example, you can replace it with other pilgrimage) as:
1) A long (with “long” being subjective) distance covered by foot (or bike, or donkey, you name it) to the Tomb of Santiago, done with a spirit concerned with religion.
2) A long (with “long” being subjective) distance covered by foot (or bike, or donkey, you name it) to the City of Santiago de Compostela, with an ending point established in the Cathedral, done conscientiously.
3) As Andrew Bennet said, to cover the 18 inches that separates our head to our heart done conscientiously. Those 18 inches for some of us are the longest journey we could ever possible made, it is certainly a journey to a sacred place, and there is no way to done it other than conscientiously. My pilgrim friend Fr. Ben said very wisely that those 18 inches are like journeying through the forest of our soul, and John O’Donohue wrote that “your soul alone knows the geography of your destiny, your soul alone has the map of your future…”

So, as I understand this matter, you can be a pilgrim without leaving your backyard or your bed or your home; and you can go to any point of the Camino de Santiago route, follow the arrows, and do just a “hike”… but you know, Spanish is my first language!!! and I can totally be missing the point here!!! 😀

Dictionary-approved Pilgrims Love,

That’s Cris from Bueno Aires. This all has to do with a blogpost a couple of days ago where I was defining a few words out of the big fat paper dictionary (American English flavor). Words that were related to pilgrimage and walking. Anyway, I stirred the pot and Cris (CSABC) got involved. There is some great stuff in her material.

Thank you Cris! I know that she does a lot of her writing while she rides the bus through Buenos Aires. It is fun to try and picture that.

I am still recovering from the Marine invasion Sunday. Those guys are real pieces of work. That is a great compliment by the way. We will see Pilgrim Farmer John again in August at the Caminoheads Get Together.

Time to go. Miss you loves, Felipé.

Ragtag But Enthusiastic, That Be Us!

That’s John in the LOUD red t-shirt.

Wow, what a visit! Pilgrim Farmer John and his gang rode in to Phil’s Camino around high noon yesterday. We may never be the same around these parts.

Two trucks pulled up in the yard, one a Suburban with John’s guys and another a pickup with a nice sweet couple Richard and Julie. Julie is local and cousin of one of the guys, Ken. But the guys piling out of the Suburban are Marine and Navy vets, various flavors of officers, mostly flyers. They have experience leaving kisses and destruction in their paths. I think that is fairly accurate. Anyway they left us kissed and exhausted. They still have it. Let’s see if I can recall them all: Kent the Elder, Doctor Tom, Ken aka Bruiser, Dapper Dan, Garnett the Swabbie and of course Pilgrim Farmer John our Caminoheads Heartland Bureau Chief.

Having arrived earlier than expected thus interrupting my last minute cleanup attempts I put them to work in pairs to get things ready. That worked out well and we managed to talk and laugh away a couple of hours before the 1600 hours walk. Sometime in there Father John walked over to give the blessing to the corn who were all standing proudly at attention for him. I was happy.

As John was the only one of the crowd that had seen the Phil’s Camino documentary we piled everyone into the living room and played the DVD for them. They were duly impressed. I hadn’t seen it in at least six months so I was reminded how good it is.

The walk went well of course without any falls or animal bites. It all looked great to me after months of cleanup from the winter snows. Of course I’m the only one who saw that. Oh, I need to mention that Jane, one of our pretty regular walkers showed up to help out the home team. Thank you Jane.

So, the guys brought a huge pile of food and bottles and a giant frosted cake for the sagging tapas table. We all did a mighty fine job on that and I doubt that supper was needed by anyone after that. Thanks guys! So they are all flying out today to various points on the map: Iowa, Vermont, South Carolina, Oklahoma.

Walking in a minute, later loves, Felipé.

Corn Relish

My well worn cookbook.
Corn Relish, a favorite!

There is some pretty fine stuff coming and going on the Comments right now but I have to keep toward getting ready for our walk today otherwise I would answer them. But duty calls or duty comes calling, something like that. Our tremendous buddy, friend, amigo and Caminoheads Heartland Bureau Chief John Conway and his friends are riding in here to Raven Ranch about 1400.

John has never been here before although we have been bantering for years and I have been to Iowa to his farm there in conjunction with one of our film showings. So, this is a real honor for me to have him here along with his buddies. They are in the Seattle area touring our various flight museums and a walk on Phil’s Camino seems to fit well with that. Then there is the blessing of our corn 🌽 by John who knows more about corn than we will ever know. But my plant guys are all up an inch or two and standing at attention for the occasion.

I am going to make my famous and tasty corn relish for tapas. Got out two bags of frozen Golden Jubilee sweet corn from the freezer and it is all warmed up and ready. You will see the recipe that I use which is out of a New Mexico cook book. (I never put the corn syrup in mine). What good is a blog without an occasional poem and recipe?

So, I am off to scurry around and get things ready for our guests today. It’s all terribly corny love, Felipé.

Can We Be Pilgrims Without Being Pedestrian?

Here is a guy that does a lot of walking or is it hiking or is it pilgrimage? Our William CCBC.

I heard so many nice sayings this morning that would have be great springboards for a blog post but I forgot almost all of that. Oh well, I only need one to write one post anyway. I saw a son of a friend of mine and I asked how his parents were doing and he replied, “Oh, chugging along.” There, that is a springboard.

On one hand chugging along is good but it stuck me at the moment as sort of unexciting. Like we’re here but just going through the motions. Yes, yes chugging along is far better than being sick and infirmed but it is not saying much.
And not that I still don’t love my friends but it is that I want things better for people and for us.

I’m looking up pedestrian in the big fat paper dictionary. And what does it say Felipé? Pedestrian as a noun is “a person walking along a road or in a developed area.” And as an adjective it is “lacking inspiration or excitement; dull…” But wait, what does it say is the definition of a pilgrim? “pilgrim – a person who journeys to a sacred place for religious reasons.”

Well, this is all semi interesting Felipé but where are you going with this? Good question and maybe nowhere but look I am out of time for the moment. Maybe we could just ponder that and work on it later.

Lunchtime loves, Felipé.

Trying To Get Organized, One More Time

Yea and thank you to whom ever wrote that.

Oh look, a little patch of blue sky, a hopeful sign. We could use a little dry out in between the rains. Well, they have all been light rains, showers really. Don’t want to scare anyone away.

I am having a conversation with Karen of Cambridge our Caminoheads England Bureau Chief. We are talking of the importance of inspiration in our ability to keep going on our cancer camino. Spell check doesn’t like an “s” on the end of camino to make it plural. And maybe that is better that way, yes? Maybe we share this camino although we have never met in person.

And I realize that in my case the importance of myths and quests in my daily going forward that serve to organize my life for me. They organize the chaos of cancer and other things. They simplify and streamline the jungle of it to let me pass through on my way. I realize that I am not using earthly logic here with this method of navigation. Somehow I have been able to be maneuver outside of the standard thinking and that has given me some sort of advantage in this journey.

There is a “for instance” here that I would like to mention because it is screaming at me presently. When we read the Beatitudes or the Sermon on the Mount in the book of Matthew we quickly run into the difference between earthly logic and heavenly logic. All our standard knowledge and thinking don’t seem to fit there anywhere. We are forced to start questioning our normal ways of thinking about things. Standard doesn’t work anymore.

And I am not saying that my view of my situation is somehow heavenly logic but it certainly is influenced by it. Or at least I was able to break with standard thinking by understanding that there are possibilities of other ways. Just sort of babbling here. All of a sudden I am self-conscious. Anyway I got that out for the world.

Looking forward in a few moments of getting some time in the corn. Weed control is the name of the game presently. One hour spent here now will be worth ten down the road.

OK, have to leave you, things call. Off we go loves, Felipé.

Held Up Again

Same pic as yesterday but more than half are showing now. But Sunday it all will be up, God willing.

Oh, not a holdup but I had another obstacle in the clinical trial of my cancer treatment. After my testing yesterday my number that was too high was still just slightly too high so I have another week off. It is coming down to the good range but not quite good enough for the protocol. So, one more week of good energy with no chemicals and the corn will appreciate it I am sure.

Am I seeing everything in terms of the corn, well maybe I am. Cris had a comment today sort of implying that. Well, could be worse, a lot worse. At some point lately I started realizing all the little myths and quests that I would think up to keep myself excited and going. None of it is so-called “real” or “factual” it is just Philthink. I hope I am making slight sense. Some of my best blog posts are in this category.

So, yea, it’s all happening as usual and this and that needs to be contended with but we march on, we walk on, we journey on. If we hear the music in our heads that keeps us sane during all this we are truly blessed.

Love you immensely, alperfect, later, Felipé.

A Break In The Rain

Half of the corn plants are visible.

Off to the city this afternoon for a checkin at the hospital. And taking Jessika to the airport for her trip to Rome. In the meantime the sun is out over Raven Ranch. The corn and the weeds are growing. I can put some energy and time in on weed control since the intermittent rain is watering it just dandy.

Let me take some time and energy right here to work on the NEWS ABOUT THE CAMINOHEADS CONVENTION:

Just to repeat some of the important stuff. We are having open house here at the ranch August 23- 26th. That’s four days of activities with plenty of time for gabbing and telling lies with fellow pilgrims. Most of the Bureau Chiefs will be here. I am assigning BC’s with duties while they are here and we will have a few meetings.

If you are flying in you need to arrive at SeaTac airport. Find your way to the Washington State Fauntleroy Ferry Dock in West Seattle, half hour from the airport. Cross over to Vashon on ferry that takes cars and passengers. We will in most cases be able to pick you up from the ferry dock here on the Vashon side if you are on foot. We will need a certain amount of rental cars so if you can afford one please get one.

We have plenty of camping available for tents and camper vehicles. We will have porta potties. We will have an outdoor kitchen available for campers.

This will be corn season and we should have plenty of corn to provide some for everyone. We can bbq, grill and potluck our way through this. Vashon has two supermarkets and a dozen eateries.

I am sure that there are plenty of b and b’s available if you get one early. Please RSVP at before June 15th with the number in your party.

I am expecting around fifty interesting people to show up. Father Tom Hall is coming as is filmmaker Annie O’Neil. Cris Milher will be here from Buenos Aires, William Hayes from Calgary and John Conway from Iowa. Our Puget Sound Western Washington Bureau Chief Ryck Thompson is arriving by boat naturally. My Rebecca, the fabulous Catherine y Dana combo will be here. I expect a good representation of local Caminoheads to show up.

Think about it and come if you can. It will be fun and as always memorable. In the words of Chris, Caminoheads love togethernessing. That’s the plan.

Off I go. Convention loves, Felipé.

The Corn Is Up!

The “Time Flies” clock sent in by Cris CSABC.

Yesterday about five percent of the little corn shoots were in the sunshine. I was watering and started to see suspicious little protrusions. It was only after I identified places where there were three or four in a row with the right spacing that I called Jim in Buffalo to celebrate with him over the phone. It is jumping out!

It started showering today and will be through the weekend so I will get relief from the watering chore. Just raking between the corn rows to cultivate and hamper the pesky weed sprouts. Water is a concern and weeds too, feeding deer comes next. But all the corn should be up for Pilgrim Farmer John’s visit this Sunday. He has come all these miles to see us and bless the field. I’m sooo happy.

And this all is mighty big news in my world. Have to get up and go for right now. It has showered lightly outside but still may be dry enough to mow some. OK, tomorrow, love, Felipé.

A Monday, The Middle Of May

Alperfect kind of book.

The middle of the month of May and you can practically see things grow here. Mow, mow and more mowing going on. The sound of chainsaws in the neighborhood has been replaced with the racket of riding mowers hitting various items in the tallish grass, ah Spring.

In the last few days the topic of survival came up. Someone, maybe Jim, brought up this book he had just read and asked if I had read it. And that brought up the memory of my two year exploration of books on survival. That was mostly outdoor survival or survival in the military sense with some prison camp thrown in. I pretty much read all there was to read on the topic and one day moved on to something else, a next phase but learn a lot and it proved to be valuable to me in my cancer camino.

Last evening I located this book that I bought at the time of the Chilean Mine Collapse back ten, twelve years ago. I was so impressed by the teamwork and expertise of the parties involved to get all the miners out of there in good shape. We all watched it on TV and it added to my bank of knowledge on the topic.

So, back to the original question recently of whether I had read a particular survival book. I think I answered in some smart ass way that I was too busy writing my own survival story at the moment. Which is one hundred percent truthful. That is exactly the situation. And one of the things that is just becoming apparent is the eerie similarity between my book of the year last year Radical Remission about cancer survival with this book The Survivors Club that I am introducing to you today. The table of contents are sooo similar.

Both books are about survival but in different realms. One side could definitively learn fro the other side like I did accidentally. Well, very nice.

Walking in a few moments. The best to you where you are, love, Felipé.