Note: This article was published in the March 2019 La Concha newsletter for American Pilgrims on the Camino. (See page 8).
The notion of walking the Camino first came at a time in my life when I was looking for a more meaningful way to travel and feeling the desire to serve. I became consumed with researching, training, packing, repacking, blogging, and chatting with pilgrims. This happened a few years before I turned 50—and to some of my friends and family, it appeared I was going through a midlife crisis! Perhaps I was, but I couldn’t have picked a healthier addiction, because the Camino ultimately led to a variety of ways that I can serve.
Greetings amigos! I hope you are enjoying the holiday festivities.
In case you missed it, one of the challenges of walking the Camino is the re-entry into our everyday life at the conclusion of our pilgrimage. If you would like to see a presentation on the topic from our recent Welcome Home event, I filmed it and added the accompanying workbook to this post, Returning Home: The Journey Continues.
Below are some upcoming hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area, and an announcement about PBS airings of the beloved documentary Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago.
Holiday Walk from Rockridge BART in Oakland
Saturday, December 8, 2 – 5:30 PM
Greetings from sunny Oakland, and happy November! Below is lineup of upcoming Camino-related events and hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area. You will also find a sneak preview of NorCal Chapter T-shirts that I’ve been working on. And for those who might enjoy some different ways to alleviate stress, check out my November Yoga & Wellness Tribe Newsletter. As always, our chapter kicks off each month with the Lake Merritt walk on the first Saturday. Experienced and virgin pilgrims are always welcome.
Lake Merritt Walk, October 6, 2018
Lake Merritt Walk
Saturday, November 3, 2018 10:30 AM
Join our walk that takes place on the first Saturday of the month, rain or shine. We meet at the Pergola (aka “The Columns”) on the east side of Oakland’s Lake Merritt at 10:30 AM and start walking by 10:45 AM. It’s a level, 3.3-mile walk around the lake that takes about an hour. Whether you’re a newbie or Camino veteran, everyone is welcome. Bring your questions, answers and pilgrim spirit!
Directions: Take BART to the Lake Merritt or 19th Street Oakland station and navigate your way to the Pergola.
If you drive, make sure to give yourself enough time to find parking, as there are many activities on Saturday mornings in the Lake Merritt area. FYI: There is a small fee lot at the corner of Euclid and Grand Avenues that is close to the Pergola.
RSVP not required, but if you’re on the NorCal Facebook group, join event.
Happy autumn! Below is lineup of upcoming Camino-related events and hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area. You will also find a sneak preview of NorCal Chapter T-shirts that I’ve been working on. And for those who might enjoy some different ways to alleviate stress, check out my October Yoga & Wellness Tribe Newsletter.
World Premiere Screening of Old Survivor
Tuesday, October 9th
Chabot Space & Science Center
One of my favorite Bay Area non-profits, Oakland Trails, has just completed their second documentary, Old Survivor, about the wonder and resilience of Oakland’s redwoods. In the 1850’s, fueled by the California Gold Rush, an ancient redwood forest was drastically logged to help build San Francisco. Yet one old tree was left behind.
I have been busy working on designs for Camino Provides T-shirts and have narrowed down the best quality fabric and styles. I brought samples to recent events in the Bay Area so that pilgrims could see for themselves and purchase. Now I would love to see your votes on what styles I should sell through an online store.
REI just gave us another reason to be loyal customers. Today on Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year in America, all REI stores are closed. The CEO made the announcement about a month ago with the idea that REI employees deserve a paid day off to enjoy the outdoor lifestyle that the company promotes. It has caused a ripple effect across the nation with state parks waiving their entrance fees for the day.
REI has been encouraging people to share photos of them doing something outside on Black Friday instead of shopping, and posting it with the hashtag #OptOutside. Check out optoutside.rei.com and add your own photo to the gallery. They make it easy to layer their “stamp” over a photo and share it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or email. See mine below.
My Black Friday “Opt Outside” started by taking a walk in the snow with the dogs
It appears this brilliant idea has taken over the Twittersphere – The #OptOutside hashtag is trending more than #BlackFriday!
Of course, REI online is always open, and you can get great Camino gear and clothing 24-7 from REI.com. But take a moment to do something outside today and share your photo along with 1.1 million people (and counting!) who joined REI in this campaign to #OptOutside.
PS- The Camino Provides T-Shirt I’m wearing below will be available soon. I ordered samples and am making sure the quality is something I would wear and recommend. I will offer two designs and different styles for men and women at a low cost.