Saturday, May 16, 2015

Saint Jean Pied de Port - May 15,16, 2015

Arrived yesterday [May 15th] around 11:30am. After 3 flights, a shuttle and a taxi.
Toronto to Montreal, Montreal to Paris, Shuttle to Orly, Orly to Biarritz and finally a taxi to St Jean Pied de Port.

I arrived at my Hotel, Hotel Ramuntcho and the room wasn't ready...funny, ya travel 24+ hours and somehow you expect them to have the room ready!!
Went for a walk and for somehing to eat. By 1pm my room was ready and, I was ready for my room.
I closed the curtains, set the alarm for 4pm and I was asleep in seconds.
I felt somewhat refreshed when I woke up and started walking about town even though it was raining.
St Jean is very hilly, reminded me of Quebec city. There are many old ruins, cobble stone streets, and great achitectural buildings. Every building has stucko, clay roofs, and shutters. The colours are red, white and green representing the colours of the country!

Ate at Hurruo Eta Klik [food was so good, I went there again tonight] and was seated with another single person, apparently that is how they do it if the restaurant is busy. A man from Holland named Peter who is strarting his walk the next morning.
I was in bed by 8:30pm and did not wake up till almost 9am. Solid sleep and needed.

This morning [May 16] I met a woman who had started her Camino in Paris [an additional 400km]. Her name was Claudette and she was from Quebec. She was heading to Orisson, which is part way up the Pyranees, 4 hour walk.
Met anoher nice Parisian women later in the day, we shared a table otside a caffe and to my surprise and delight, she paid for my drink!!!
Had a nice day walking, sometimes in the rain, the hills here are a great practice for tomorrows ascent!

My hotel


St Jean

Claudette from Quebec


Till soon,

Thursday, May 7, 2015

7 days to go...

At this time (2pm Thursday, May 14th, 2015) I will be on my first flight toward my journey on the El Camino de Santiago de Compostela!

Keep me in your thoughts, prayers, and follow me!
Next post will be from St Jean Pied de Port, France!

Till soon,

Thursday, April 30, 2015

14 days to go!

The seed to walk the El Camino de Santiago de Compostela was planted 5 long years ago whilst having a "need to travel" with my brother Robert!
Wow! Freaking myself out knowing that the time has finally come.

I have walked the Camino in my mind hundreds of times.
I have a John Brierley guidebook of The Way of St. James - A Practical & Mystical Manual for the Modern Day Pilgrim also referred to as a Guide to the Camino de Santiago.

Anyway, I have devoured this guide, page by page, map by map, as well as watching YouTube videos of others' journey on the Camino Frances.

I have read books:

I have watched The Way with Martin Sheen - a father's experience walking the Camino, it only increased my desire to walk.

I am ready, so ready!

A little bit of statistics so far this year of the amount of pilgrims or pereginos or pèlerins that have made the journey so far:

January 2015 - 1, 217 (compared to 906 in 2014)

  • 64.34% men
  • 35.66% women of which 4.44% were 60 and over.
February 2015 - 1, 544 (compared to 970 in 2014)
  • 61.59% men
  • 38.41% women of which 4.73% were 60 and over.
March 2015 - 5, 080 (compared to 3,150 in 2014)
  • 55.75% men
  • 44.25% women of which 8.19% were 60 and over.
April stats not yet up, I will update when it is available. So, so far this year, 7, 841 brave souls!

Quite a steady increase from 2014 and, looks like women prefer warmer weather - smarte!

Buen Camino!

(Camino: way, path, journey, road)

Saturday, April 25, 2015


Today I walked a route I use often.
I decided to take my GoPro along.
I filmed for 58 minutes.
This blog only allow 100mb or 1:35 clip.
I was not planning on putting a 58 minute video, however, I would have liked to have maybe a 5 minute clip.
I uploaded 1 clip at the required time and once I clicked "publish" and reviewed "live" it was horrible.
So, here I will add a link for my walk down an access point to Kempenfelt Bay and see if it works better. It is not as clear as the original, I will have to work on that - take some Tutorials or something.
Click on Kempenfelt Bay, and let's see,

Till soon!

PS: I checked it, it is not so bad! Let me know what you think!

Friday, April 24, 2015


One can answer in a variety of ways:
"Why not?"
"Because I can!"
"Not sure!"
"The Camino is calling me!"
"It is on my Bucket List"
"To find answers!" or "Find myself!" or "Discover my best self!"
"Spiritual Connection" or "Spiritual Awakening"

I like all of them and I have answered pretty much all of the above depending on my mood or how the question was asked.

Here are a couple of quotes regarding the why question that truly resonate with me:

"Le Coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connaît pas!" ["The heart has its reasons, of which reason knows nothing."] - Pascal, Les Pensées.

Or this...which aligns with the 'no regret' lifestyle:

"Don't be the one who says, 'I wish I had,' Be the one who says 'I did.'" - Paula Morand

Hasta Luego,

Thursday, April 23, 2015

21 days to go!

Snowing today. Roads are slippery (according to the news, many crashes, you'd think it was the first snow of the winter).

I have declared today a rest day...PJ day...a luxury really - because I realize that once I start my Camino, it will not be a choice I can make easily.

I am going through my things, I have been packed for months. Checking and re-assessing items to make sure I "want" to carry said items and that I "will" use them. I have learned, from reading veteran blogs, that it is just not worth the extra weight. I will check again the weekend before I leave.

Here are a few photos of things I am bringing:

Heard a quote the other day that I like and may even get it tattooed to my forearm one day:
"I am a miracle in motion." - author unknown. I will add, "Buen Camino"

I am a miracle in motion...Buen Camino!

Till soon,

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Chant des Pèlerins de Compostelle/Compostela Pilgrim's Chant

Compostella Pilgrim’s Chant!

- Jean-Claude Benazet

Tous les matins nous prenons le chemin, Tous les matins nous allons plus loin.
Jour après jour, la route nous appelle, C’est la voix de Compostelle.
Ultreïa ! Ultreïa ! E sus eia
Deus adjuva nos !
Chemin de terre et chemin de Foi, Voie millénaire de L’Europe.
La voie lactée de Charlemagne, C’est le chemin de tous les jacquets.
Ultreïa ! Ultreïa ! E sus eia
Deus adjuva nos !
Et tout là-bas au bout du continent, Messire Jacques nous attend.
Depuis toujours son sourire fixe, Le soleil qui meure au Finistère.
Ultreïa ! Ultreïa ! E sus eia
Deus adjuva nos !

Every morning we take the path, Every morning we go further.
Day after day, the road calls us, It is the voice of the Compostela.
Go Further ! Go Further ! And Go Higher !
God Assist Us !
Dirt road and Faith, Millennium Way of Europe.
The Milky Way of Charlemagne, This is the way of all the pilgrims.
Go Further ! Go Further ! And Go Higher !
God Assist Us !
And while there at the end of the continent, Messire Jacques waits ahead.
Always his fixed smile, The sun dies in Finistère.
Go Further ! Go Further ! And Go Higher !
God Assist Us !

I am going to hum this little is very soothing and uplifting!

When you click on the title above, it will bring you to a Youtube video of the someone else's journey...but that's okay, couldn't find only the chant!