Hump Day

On the Meseta, August 2014.

Not that Hump Day makes too much difference around here. As Steve-O NWBC says, “We never close!” We are open weekends, holidays, whatever. Here to serve you, pilgrims worldwide, is what we are about.

I see on FB that Roni and Callum are in North Carolina. If I am not mistaken they are there to attend the APOC Gathering. Is anyone else off in that direction, Nancy from Kansas City?
Maybe one of these years I should go. Probably will wait for it to be on the West Coast.

Last evening I caught wind of an Order of Malta pilgrimage to the Lady of Guadalupe shrine in Mexico City. That sounds very interesting to me. The whole LOG phenomenon is intriguing. Has anyone been there that would like to report on it?

Day 19 of Lent today. Let’s cover the quote from Annie’s Everyday Camino with Annie:

I need to be alone. I need to ponder my shame and my despair in seclusion; I need the sunshine and the paving stones of the streets without companions, without conversation, face to face with myself, with only the music of my heart for company.
~ Henry Miller

To Annie this equates to walking the Meseta, the middle third of the Camino Frances. It might be called the dreaded Meseta too in the sense that it is hard and demanding. It is skipped by some. I remember hearing all this early on and deciding that I needed to walk that part for sure. It is part of being the guy that does everything the hard way.

But in the end it was my favorite part for I found refuge in it’s seclusion, in it’s desolation. I loved it’s dry land farming the miles and miles of it. It was all very real to me. Pilgrim’s looked out for each other in a way that they didn’t in easier stretches.

Even though I bused from Leon to Samos I was still plenty beat up for the last 100 kilometers. This limping, rumpled, dusty look separated us from the clean people at Sarria. We love them too of course but there was an obvious difference in the populations.

OK, off I go. The sun is shining and there is a long list yet. We are together and that is what counts. Thanks for stopping by. Dusty loves, Felipé.

PS – And to think of it the Meseta is actually the hump or middle section of the Camino, how appropriate. It all fits together nicely in the end.

6 thoughts on “Hump Day”

  1. ¡Hola Felipe!
    At Damien High School, in Southern California, the legend of Our Lady appearing to Saint Juan Diego is required reading in the second year Spanish classes. December 12th is her feast day which is celebrated by students with prayer projects (rosaries, meditations in Spanish), presentations and a schoolwide mass. From 1980-2004 I would lead student tours/pilgrimages to México City, Guadalupe and the Yucatán every other summer. Climbing the Colina de Tepeyac where Juan Diego picked the roses in 1531, watching pilgrims praying the rosary on their knees across the plaza in front of the Basílica de Guadalupe and standing below the tilma/cloak with her image were powerful experiences.

    The most striking takeaway I have of the miracle of Guadalupe is that it lives on today. Campesinos/peasant farmers from all over Cental America (some from my village in Guatemala) still set out on foot in November (over 800 miles) hoping to reach Guadalupe by her feast day. Amazingly, their beautiful humility keeps them from entering the Basílica with their dirty sandaled feet and dusty clothes. They will pray to Our Lady and then return to their villages on foot. They are blessed the same Caminoheads way…being concerned not so much with the arrival but to arrive with others.

    Of all the Marian miracles Guadalupe is the only one given with Our Lady’s image.

    ¡Viva Guadalupe!


    1. Gracias Diego. You are the expert it appears. So Our Lady’s feast day is December 12. Is that the day of the original apparition? It amazes me how little the average North American knows about this. I ran into it by accident on a trip to Mexico which happened to include December 12th. The celebration was a near riot. It got my attention even though I had no idea what was going on. Thanks again, Felipé.

      1. According to the legend…The first apparition was on December 8th, the holy day, as Juan was on his way to hear mass. On the 12th he picked the roses and took them to the bishop. As the roses fell from Juan’s garment at the feet of the bishop and 7 other priests…the image slowly developed on the tilma.

        December 12th is usually started around 12:01am with ‘las mañanitas’ songs to
        Mary, masses, dancing and goes all day with half a million pilgrims in the square.

  2. Probably my two favourite parts of the Camino were the meseta and the section from Leon to Sarria, esp the section from Astorga to O Cebreiro. I loved the quiet open nature of the meseta. It felt like a breath in, a chance to be alone and with God. I loved the sheer beauty of the Montes Leon, from the history of Astorga up through Rabanal to the Irin Criss. I saw deer, a fox, eagles. Nature felt so close. Hoping to get back there some time.

    1. Karen ~ OK, we’ll go back to do Leon to Sarria. That was the part that I bused through due to lack of time. As to the Meseta I loved howling into the wind the most. Crazy heat out there though. Felipé.x

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