Since The Veranda

The Bureau Chiefs meeting, August ‘19. Left to right: William, Felipé, Cris, Rho and Farmer John.

Five weeks is not a lot of time. But something new has appeared since our spectacular get together. There has been a shift in our style and our sharing. It is subtle but noticeable now and Farmer John pointed to it in his comment today.

The blog is less Felipé’s blog these days as other talents start to participate and express themselves and their viewpoint. I don’t mind this and welcome it. It has been my intention to have this happen for a long time now. And somehow it just sort of evolved as of late.

It is sort of a shift of gears. And it’s affects will become more apparent as time goes on. We have developed trust in each other and we have begun to work together in a new way. This is all very exciting. Ultimately who knows where this is going to take us but it can’t be a bad thing.

Off I go. A beautiful morning walk coming up. We are then on a drive down to Olympia to pick up a new wood stove. Have a dinner invite this evening after all the work is done.

very exciting loves, Felipé.

Thinking about Friday Evening.

The discussion about National Tinfoil Week. This cracks me up.

It’s quiet now and two days past Friday and the showing of So Far So Good. It rained and hailed but we persisted. And the wonderful QandA. I am so so honored to be part of those happenings. That one had especially gratifying with tremendous chemistry.

Elsewhere we have news from the Camino, yes, the Camino de Santiago and Astorga specifically. I think that this is a first. We had a meet up between one of our Caminoheads, Debra Jarvis with Ron our Bureau Chief in Astorga. Debra was here at the Veranda and several days after that she was off to walk the Camino. I had been texting with her and set her up with our folks who live along the Way. Yes, very cool.

Ron , Caminoheads Astorga Bureau Chief with Debra Jarvis.

I’m happy. Here we are making news locally and abroad. Sort of almost a juggernaut!

juggernaut loves, Felipé.

The Calvary: The Hill Showing

Interior of Calvary: the Hill Church, Seattle.

It’s a little old German church on Capital Hill, Seattle. We were lucky to know a great person Nick a lay pastor there. He wanted to show Phil’s Camino there for the neighborhood. Unfortunately it was a crazy evening with a downpour including hail. But people showed up. I guessed that we had sixty, a quarter of which were some of my nurses from the Institute.

Nick somehow wrangled the long version which is always fun for My Rebecca and me. It still seems like the first time we watched it. I love the hummingbird story and the more Wiley and the more Kelly. My Rebecca and the National Cheese Fortnight tickles me.

But the high point of the evening for me was the QandA which sometimes turns cosmic like it did there last night on the Hill. There were people there that were struggling with cancer problems and I got to talk to them. I am totally humbled and deeply honored to be able to do that. Those folks combined with the energy of all my beautiful nurses was great chemistry.
I wish we could film these events when they happen but they are way too intimate for that. Just have to do them one at a time I guess the old fashioned way.

But a lot of folks were interested in coming out to walk the trail. And for sure there are new folks reading our blog posts today. Yes, a bigger readership is welcomed. Yes, welcome all you new folks!

So time to head out for now, starting a new work project today. Need to pick up and transport materials to our shop. It’s my semi retirement hustle.

So as always love and appreciate you all. It is an amazing pleasure to know and work with you. And let’s not let the rain spoil our fun either.

rainy day loves, Felipé.

Cris’ Seriously Good Friday Post 9/27/19

Caminoheads 2019 Veranda.

Hola a todos! Yes, that is surely the righest way to start!
Followed by: bear with my English, Spanish is my first language!

You may know me already, as The Boss, aka, Phil/Felipe, has talked about me a couple times,… but anyway: I am Cris, I am from & live in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I was invested with “SACBC” South America Caminoheads Bureau Chief, which I accept very humbly and live with high responsibility as it includes the Spanish and Portuguese speaker communities from Colombia to Antartica (as I write this, I wonder if I take care of Central America too??? but that is for a private email to the boss… and a different number in the check!) When not busy in affairs that the SACBC role implies, I have a busy job in the “corporate world” of Clinical Research, working on the development of treatments through clinical trials.

But if you ask me who I am, I am a Pilgrim. Even when my days go by commutting into the city, and sitting in an office with my computer and phone, I am a Pilgrim. Clinical Research is just what I do for a living.

I had that sense of having become a Pilgrim when I came back from the Camino in 2011 (after walking from Leon to Santiago). But it was difficult to feel I was living up to my Pilgrim identity dressed in business clothes, taking trains and subways, and walking only from the elevator to my office… but the connection I kept to the other pilgrims, my Camino family, was what made me persevere in being in the world who I was: a Pilgrim.

Fast forward January 2017, I came across the trailer of Phil’s Camino in the Facebook, I visited Caminoheads, left a comment, and the next thing was an email from Phil inviting me to a Skype call… and the Magic started… My Pilgrim and human identity are reinforced through the daily interactions with Phil and the Caminoheads. Since then too, I not only have a Camino Family, but also a Camino Neighborhood. And in this neighborhood, the neighbors like to invite each other to the living room of their homes (although we are posh and use the word “salon”, as the French do!) and we have amazing conversations about books, life, death, blessings, suffering, love… Very often we sit outside in the Tapas Table and we drink wine, break bread, and share our gifts. Most of all, we walk together and encourage each other, sadly, we haven’t lost weight, but it is all muscles of generosity and beauty…we have grown a lot…

How do we do all of this living 6800 miles away? Well, we have “figured that out”, that is what Pilgrims do. Believe me, I also wondered if “all of that is true”, and then we had the Veranda 2019 and now there is no doubt…

New neighbors, new family members and new homes that opened their doors to me Loves,


Why Pilgrimage?

Here is a nice article about pilgrimage in England that was given us by Catalina our art historian. It is specifically about visiting cathedrals, making pilgrimage to historic cathedrals. Here is one paragraph:

“So what is driving this uptake in pilgrimages? “The top reason for pilgrimage is emotional well-being,” Hayward said. He views this as part of a broader sociological trend. “The rise of pilgrimage is part of the shift from the age of knowledge, which has dominated the past three centuries, to the age of experience.””

Ah, it looks like we are cutting edge here, bounding and leaping down the trail. We the advanced guard. We the trend setters. What is that song we used to sign, “don’t know much about algebra”, don’t know what a slide rule is for”.

Here is the link to the rest of this article:

English Cathedral Pilgrimage

It is my observation that the experiential quest is closely allied with the mystical side of religion. It finds it’s juice in the doing, the immersion and the internalization. Knowing is one thing but living with it is another.

So tapas, not to change the subject. Cruised Trader Joe’s yesterday on the way back from the Institute. I found two other items that make for good things to bring to the table:

Kalimata olives and spanish sheep cheese Iberico.

see you later alligator loves, Felipé.

Off To The Big City

My Rebecca’s birthday today!

Off to the Institute for a checkin with Nugget (Dr Gold). My clinical trail moves along. I am hopeful that we are making a difference in the cancer situation.

In a way progress with my personal case is progress for everyone. Every step forward is progress for everyone as ripples move outward. And progress of my cancer patient neighbor is progress for me and everyone also.

Anne, one of my nurses showed up yesterday with her husband and new baby to walk the trail. So good to see her as I am in a different department at the Institute now that I am on this clinical trial. The new baby could have been the newest little person to walk Phil’s Camino.

I am humming Country tunes today. I am so in love with the Ken Burns documentary on TV these evenings. Entitled Country Music it is just a peach of a program. The last episode is tonight. My Rebecca is into it also. It is a great big slice of Americana and a fun history lesson. Thank you Ken, once again. Once Again Ken, just nicknamed him. Hehe.

Finished my book Walking to Listen by Andrew Forsthoefel. What a wonderful documentary. It is heartening to see such a work from someone so young, must be an Old Soul. Thank you Janie for handing that off to me.

Well, winding my way through the process here at the Institute. Maybe I will get out in the sunshine and beat the afternoon rush hour after all.

rush hour love, Felipé.

The Fall Equinox

Farmer John just sent this.

Is that it, that the equinox is on the 23rd this year. It was the year My Rebecca and I got married in 1978. I’m moving too fast to look that up right now with Uncle Google. But it doesn’t really matter all that much. But it always seems a little odd that it can occur that late.

So Farmer John and Farmer Cathy’s road runs perfectly east and west like no road on this island. So, twice a year at the equinox’s the same old sun sets in perfect alignment with the road. That is the pic at the top. I love the way that all fits together so clearly. The cosmic machinery all lining up with the grid of your neighborhood is a stunning affirmation. Some kind of Heartland Stonehenge goin’ on there at the Conway homestead. Makes you want to drag out your old Earth Science book from Junior High to see if you couldn’t make that happen on Wiggly Holler Road where you are.

Farmer Cathy and Farmer John in dresses. Oh wait, that’s a kilt.

Yea, that’s our wedding anniversary too, the 23rd that is. Somehow we thought that it would be cool. My birthday is on December 21st, the winter solstice. Maybe that was the attraction don’t remember, lost in the mists of time.

So, back from our mini vacation to Port Townsend. Time to make sense of the home front. The wood stove is still apart on the bench waiting for parts as the temps fall. The winter birds are starting to show up. Was holding off til the 1st to start feeding the birds along the trail. And then before you know the time will change and it will begin to seem like another planet with the darkness descending. But I think we have a few fab days in the offing yet.

OK, all good loves, Felipé.

Today Our 41st

With Stephen Tobolowsky at Port Townsend.

Happy Anniversary to My Rebecca and myself today. A whole bunch of water can flow under the bridge in forty one years. That’s more than a lifetime for some folks. It’s a lot of Christmas presents and Easter bonnets. Of course it’s not all party time, challenges abound but so do blessings.

We are back from our trip to Port Townsend, our treat to each other. So glad that we took a hold of that. We are talking about trying to go again next year. Lots of good new filmmakers and good new films every year. It is always inspiring to sample their work. Of course there are plenty of film festivals in different towns but Port Townsend is such a lovely welcoming place. They work really hard on this and they celebrated their 20th anniversary this year.

So, we are back to the ranch today. Work that needs continuing and walks that need walking and I suppose tapas to accomplish. The weather is rain, sun, rain, sun and repeat. Perfect conditions for little seeds in the soil. The crimson clover, the cover crop, is up in the corn. And all the areas of dead grass around are greening up with new little hopeful shoots.

The apples are ripe and the wild pears are starting to litter the ground. The deer like them alcoholic and mushy so they will move in for treat in October. The voles are everywhere, a high point in their population curve, and the barred owls are starting to be everywhere responding to that boom. It’s all happening in the wild kingdom neighborhood.

Off to walk momentarily, a beautiful morning is presenting itself. Come by when you get a chance. Check the schedule I put up yesterday. Remember soon the time will change and the afternoon walks will then start at 1530 instead of 1600 (3:30 instead of 4:00). Yup, winter schedule.

yup loves, Felipé.

Phil’s Phantastic Walking Schedule 9/22/19

Along the trail.

Running back from Port Townsend and the festival to make it back to the ranch. Have a walk at 4 PM to get to. So, generally the trail is in good shape. The Fall thing is going on and there is a little rain here and there but no mud as of yet. Come by!

Monday 0900-1000
Tuesday 1600-1700 (tapas after)
Thursday 0900-1000
Sunday 1600-1700 (tapas after)

with you loves, Felipé.

Blessed, Sort Of

My Rebecca and I are up at The Port Townsend Film Festival doing that festival stuff. Lots of other folks here from all over, yea, a festival. We saw two great films yesterday before the incident.

One was Jay Myself and our friend Doug Blush is one of two of the executive producers. Jay is Jay Maisel a giftd and famous photographer. And it is a story of his life and adventures. Check it out. Doggie knows what he is doing.

Two was Primary Instinct with Stephen Tobolowsky story telling. He is a wonderful storyteller and human. Rebecca worked with him on fund raising for the Vashon High School Drama Department some years ago. So we had a little reunion there.

But the incident, which our friend Pat proposed might be a blessing, happened while we where in the second show. We had parked out away from the theater next to the skatepark. Lots of youngsters there enjoying themselves. But when we came back to the car I jumped in and could hardly see through the windshield. What the heck? I started inspecting the exterior of Sheba (our Ford Taurus) and it was covered with white splashes. At first I thought birds but the quantity was ridiculous and I switched the blame to the youngsters wielding a vanilla milkshake.

But I had to take that back after a car wash when I discovered on closer inspection that the the material was bird related but the quantity was unbelievable. I have to conclude with Pat’s help that we had received a massive direct hit of goose blessing from above. How can we be so lucky?!?

Well, we are having fun in whatever way we can. Doug is here, Stephen is here. Jane Julian, the Program Director is here somewhere and Annie is flying in as we speak. So, more shenanigans are in the making.

Later, have to find some breakfast.

It’s all a blessing loves, Felipé.