8 Hours To Cross The Mountains (... and that's just the first day)
September 29, 2016 1:52 AM   Subscribe

The Camino de Santiago is a long walk. This is the story of one man walking a pilgrim's way to the bones of Saint James the Great in Northwest Spain. SandyRoe tells his story to an online community of cruciverbalists.

I'm hoping that this a extremely metafilter post as it contains an online community reacting to someone walking his dream route later in life, and really endearing writing about his walk.

Depending how into the community reactions you are, you may just want to read his posts (highlighted yellow).

I suppose it's just quite nice to read about someone doing something cool that's not published on medium, nor tied in with selling something?

He's nearly there, so now is a good time to catch up :)
posted by CjEggett (13 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Very appropriate to have a cruciverbalist talking about a pilgrimage.
posted by Joe in Australia at 1:55 AM on September 29, 2016 [2 favorites]

Took me a couple of minutes to realize cruciverbalists are not some obscure Catholic sect focused on bizarre forms of mortification.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:58 AM on September 29, 2016 [8 favorites]

Mefites might also enioy this fictional film 'The Way' about MeFi's favourite ex-president walking the Camino de Santiago.
posted by biffa at 4:08 AM on September 29, 2016 [6 favorites]

Took me a couple of minutes to realize cruciverbalists are not some obscure Catholic sect focused on bizarre forms of mortification.

I had to google; given the context, I assumed it was something about the spoken word of Jesus or stories about the cross.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:01 AM on September 29, 2016

Not a complaint, but know that there are many caminos to Santiago, not just one, though the Camino Frances is the most famous. ( walked in 2004 ) Some pilgrimage groups actively encourage folks to consider other routes to lessen the impact on the route, the towns and cities along the way (!).

I don't keep up with the online community as frequently as I did back then, but there are many excellent online forums, resources, and guides online if you're interested in more info.
posted by grimjeer at 5:21 AM on September 29, 2016 [1 favorite]

Not a complaint, but know that there are many caminos to Santiago, not just one,

Indeed, the very first part of the pilgrim's guide portion of the 12th century Liver Sancti Jacobi is a list of various ways to get started. It's a little outdated, if you're worried about what streams your horse can drink from without dying, but it's a surprisingly interesting read, especially when you consider that people are taking the same trip today, 800 years later.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:26 AM on September 29, 2016 [3 favorites]

cruciverbalist. : a person skillful in creating or solving crossword puzzles.

I learned a word today. Thanks! Also, cool article!
posted by pointystick at 6:29 AM on September 29, 2016

I'm fitter at 39 than I've probably been the entirety of my 20s and definitely the first half of my 30s and I really want to walk the Camino (mostly for myself, mostly for my Catholic mom who wishes she could). Reading people's accounts continues to aspire me. Thank you for sharing.
posted by Kitteh at 6:54 AM on September 29, 2016 [2 favorites]

I am off work, dying with the flu - dying I say! - and I have spent all day reading the thread. It is lovely, thanks so much for the post. He writes so well and it is in turns interesting and moving. (Spoiler alert) it seems he had been caring for his sister and had recently taken the decision to let her be cared for in a home. The walk represented freedom to him when he was burdened by responsibility; now he is free to walk The Way but is also carrying a stone to the Iron Cross, representing an attempt to lay down his guilt at making this decision. The support and comments from the other members are so warm and helpful - people posting weather updates and travel tips, links and quotes from poetry - that it made me a little teary in places. He's from Belfast and when he mentioned the difficult circumstances of his childhood I actually know where his house was and it seems he lives close to me now, so I guess that made it feel all the more immediate. If you have the time I'd really recommend reading it all. Though of course now I'm at the end and it's not finished, so I'll be checking in over the next few days to greet him (mentally) at the finish line.

I know a few people who have walked the Camino, and some who've walked part of it. My partner and I have talked about doing a stage although I don't know if we'll ever do it. I suggested we take my mum who's a keen walker and has also mentioned walking it. His expression said "Maybe not." They get along well but to be fair my relationship with her is occasionally tested by a Sunday afternoon walk around the shops so possibly a few hundred miles in the heat together may not be the best way forward. Anyway this is a great post. I'd never have found it by myself and I feel a little richer for having read it.
posted by billiebee at 8:22 AM on September 29, 2016 [4 favorites]

Good someone explain the Best Answer joke to me?
posted by maryr at 10:11 AM on September 29, 2016

Judas Iscariot - Judas (the beer he bought) a carry-out (a carry-out is a term for drink bought in an off-licence)
posted by billiebee at 10:20 AM on September 29, 2016

To be more clear, people must usually post threads about crossword clues and can mark one Best Answer like in AskMe. This thread happens to be about something else but when the user made that pun, the OP marked it Best Answer saying something like he couldn't see anyone coming up with anything better.
posted by billiebee at 10:24 AM on September 29, 2016

He's arrived :)
posted by CjEggett at 1:30 AM on October 4, 2016

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