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Posts Tagged ‘Camino’

Happy Birthday Queen Elizabeth II 94 today…I was lucky enough to see her in Windsor for her 90th birthday, and have her walk right in front of me 🥰🥰🥰👏👏💚💚 the Queen.  Sadly there’s no gun salutes or Trooping the Colour this year…looking forward to 2021….

I found this awesome book for my grandson today 😀😀 Its amazing and since the theme in the nursery is space, this will fit right in.

The universe works in mysterious ways….I’ve been so worried about travelling next week and inadvertently contracting the virus and possibly passing it on, or the incoming carer bringing something in with her….so today I got a call from the agency to ask if I could stay on here for another 2 weeks as the incoming carer is ill (has a bad cold) and is self-isolating, as well as which my next job has been cancelled because that family want their carer to extend her stay as well. So there it is….no travelling next week, but sadly it also means I don’t get to see my family….

I saw this on one of the Camino pages today and thought I’d share it with you:

Johnniewalker Santiago posted the following on the Camino Discussion Group this morning. For those who might not have seen it, he has given permission to post his communication with John Brierly here. It’s well worth the read!

LETTER FROM JOHN BRIERLEY:
CORNAVIRUS AND THE CAMINO, OUR LAST WAKE UP CALL
Two years ago I asked members of the group to send me questions that I would put to John Brierley in the second interview with him I’ve published. I’ll re-post the questions and answer soon. We keep in touch with each other and I asked him for his thoughts on our current situation. This is his reply. He invites us to engage in a useful and loving dialogue about the issues he raises.

Dear John
You sound well and lock-down seems to be proving a creative time for you! So here is a response that might, or might not, stimulate some creative thinking amongst our pilgrim family.
… I trust that once the world comes out of this pandemic we will, collectively, want to do things differently – but there is much talk of getting back to ‘normal’ which would be a travesty. Consensus reality and the status quo is literally now killing many of us and the earth support systems on which we depend. At best we are looking at a severely diminished quality of life over the near horizon. We have to find a ‘new normal’ by way of an elevated consciousness — not only for us but crucially for the generations that follow. These are portentous, perhaps pompous and certainly presumptive statements. Even if you see them as holding some truth you might legitimately ask, what has any of this to do with the caminos de Santiago.

I have always believed that the camino holds a key to a fundamental re-appraisal of how and why we live our lives. It was this conviction that created caminoGuides and this remains its only raison d’être, it has no other purpose nor ever will. Providing my publisher doesn’t go bankrupt (many may) a new guidebook to the Camino Invierno will go to print later this year. I attach a draft introduction which offers a reflection on the positive potential of the Coronavirus to help bring about the change that is needed if we are to learn to cooperate to face the challenges that are now on a global scale. (see below)

The real challenge is just around the corner and it is not coronavirus! I see this pandemic as just a wake up call that we may, or may not, heed. All the signs at the moment are that we are going to miss this opportunity just like we missed previous wakeup calls. We bailed out the banks in 2008 and now look set to bail out the oil and aviation industries with vast sums of public monies while offering paltry sums to small sustainable energy and business enterprises. As Greta Thunberg asks, ‘where are the adults?’ Our collective thinking is juvenile at best and often infantile. Eldership is nowhere to be seen but we need to find it urgently and perhaps it lies closer than we think… in ourselves. Rabbinic sage Hillel the Elder asked the rhetorical question, “If not me, who? If not now, when?”

I was a little concerned at the severity of the draft (below) until I listened to an interview with David Attenborough yesterday where, for the first time, he says this is it — no further chance to kick the can down the road. Coronavirus is our last gentle wake up call, the real threat to our collective survival is just around the corner. Pass on what you think might be useful to generate useful and loving dialogue so that we might better forge a new path going forward.

The Coronavirus brought with it much grief and its impact on many levels will be felt for years to come. This is no less true for the camino as in any other sphere of life. Pilgrim infrastructure and albergues that took decades to put in place are struggling to survive, some have already closed permanently and others will follow. The virus was named by the World Health Organisation as, ‘…an enemy against humanity’. This is an unfortunate epithet because, from Gaia’s perspective, humanity itself has become the most destructive force on the planet. If the devastation that arose from this pandemic brings about a paradigm shift in human consciousness it may yet contain a blessing in disguise. For at least a generation we have, collectively, lived beyond the means of the planet to sustain us and all of life that surrounds us. We are not the only sentient beings that occupy the earth and we have wilfully and woefully ignored the plight of nature herself. Now, today, we can change the way we think and act. We can move from fear to love. We can choose to respect each other and the natural world that is our home. We can… but will we? Each of us is part of the whole we call humankind and artificial borders can separate us no more. Indeed they never have but only in our deluded and limited understanding of the nature of reality. Coronavirus taught us that we are all part of the same delicate balance of life on earth. Will we heed its warning or revert to business as usual … until the next crisis strikes again?

“We have yet to learn the simple act of walking the earth like brothers.” Martin Luther King Jr.

The photo shows the medieval bridge A Ponte de Taboada. This is the point where the Winter Way joins the Camino Sanabrés. Both, in turn, connecting with a larger network of caminos that link us with the rest of Europe and, by extension to every nation on earth. The great insight of the First Nations has always been to remind us that, Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself… we may yet find we are brothers after all.

Blessings…
John Brierley

Certainly something to think about….do we really want to go BACK to where we were before?

I had a fab walk this afternoon…such a beautiful day

And I popped out quickly this evening to watch the sunset

And I can’t quite believe I’m still blogging 29 days later….😀 stay safe folks 🌈🌈🌈

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And another day down, another day bites the dust – will this ever end? Not for a while apparently…its so bizarre.

The numbers are just escalating and the number of people who are infected is frightening….somewhere, somehow, we are all going to come into contact with this thing…and no-one has any ideas….

Our politicians; not just the UK, are all just marking time and making noise….because no-one has a clue.

So lockdown till mid-May 😱😱😱 I simply cannot imagine how people are coping. I really do consider myself to be one of the very lucky ones…I’m working, getting paid, in a safe (for now) environment, I have food to eat (paid for by the client) and I don’t have to venture out unless I choose to. I have books to read, a window into the world (my phone) and my family are safe. I am totally blessed.

I spoke to my daughter today via facetime and watched my grandson playing in the garden 100s of kms away, heard him say Granny for the first time 🥰🥰🥰 and chatted briefly to my son-in-law about his job. He was wearing a pair of wellies I bought him some months ago and apparently he was walking sideways at first trying to get used to them. 💙💙💙 He’s such a funny little boy, so intent and so focused….when he sets his sights on something it’s like a laser….and he will not be diverted. He sometimes walks with head down, his hands behind his back and absolutely focused on getting to wherever he decides to go…looks like a little old man 😁😁 They’re safe and healthy.

Finally my walking poles arrived….but not to where they were addressed….no, instead they arrived at the ‘return’ address 🤣🤣🤣🤪 which fortunately I thought to have added as it’s my daughter’s address. So I shall soon be reunited with my trusty walking buddies. Gemini, I have missed you…wish you were here.

I finished reading the 8th book since I arrived here just 2 days short of 4 weeks ago…it was a different world then. This has been a rare luxury and I haven’t read this many books in such a short period of time for decades. Literally decades. I used to read vociferously in SA, and although I’ve read plenty of books in the last 18.5 years, I’ve not read 8 in 4 weeks 😁😁 a bit of a record.

An unexpected but satisfactory ending

Just before I hopped into bed I leaned my head on the windowsill to listen….to the sounds of silence. No cars, no bikes, no barking dogs, no TV, no music, no people talking….just pure palpable silence. Bliss.

I’ve been on Facebook for much of the day 😝😝😝🤔🤔 bloody hate it, but it’s so addictive. I follow a few Camino pages and every day I’m astounded at the number of people who seem to think that they can still walk the Camino this year. A common question is: “my airline has cancelled my flight for June, should I book for September?” Seriously, these people are living in lala land. If they could pull their heads out their proverbial….they might just realise that Spain is not going to be remotely able to deal with a bunch of tourists…pretend pilgrims. Ignorant…!!! So many people who are involved with the Camino have posted on the pages about the devastating effects of Covid-19 and how the infrastructure is struggling and yet these ‘pumpkins’ just don’t get it. Gahhh.

Talking of pilgrimage….I bought the April edition of Countryfile a few weeks ago and am just about to delve into an article about Holy Island and St Cuthbert’s Way. On my list of walks to do….I’m guessing that the Camino I planned for 2021 is going to be on hold…instead I’ll look at walking a few of the long list of UK walks I want to do, 3 of which are pilgrimages following in the footsteps of Saints.

Nothing much else to add really. I didn’t go out again today, had a snooze instead which is a treat. But I think I will make an effort tomorrow. I only have another 8 days here so want to make the most of it while I can. I’m booked to return in July for 3 weeks, and hopefully by then the lockdown will be lifted and I can venture further afield.

I’m looking forward to the return of blue skies….

Stay safe folks……

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