A Good Reminder

We sit on the front porch this Mother’s Day – Die de la Madre – in Spain. And we watch Pilgrims pass the gate, even into this eventing. Each of them had to have the courage to take that first step. From their front door across the ocean, on an airplane or a train. No matter, the celebration of that spirit of adventure. A desire to simplify and go within.

There are more Pilgrims this year than any other before. Post pandemic, more people are searching for that missing something and many of them have landed here. And we get to see them and encourage them with a smile and a wave. What a blessing to be part of it. And then, this reminder came across my social media feed.


This is a great conversation on Rick Steves’ podcast. With his guests Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez discussing the rerelease of their movie The Way across the US in a thousand theaters for one night only May 16th.

The movie is an inspiring story of a grieving father collecting his son’s remains after he has been killed in the Pyrenees on his first day on the Camino. And, in a fit of pique, he grasps his son’s pack and sets off on his own Camino to grieve. And ultimately to discover himself. A noble endeavor, and one that all Pilgrims can relate to.

I wish we were in the US on May 16th. I have seen The Way many times and love rewatching. But, I would love to hear other people’s reactions in the US. In Europe everyone knows about the Camino de Santiago. But in the US it is little known. When Emilie and I walked from France 800kms across Spain in 2017, there were people I knew in the US who thought I was crazy. And to take my high school daughter? Well, that was the height of irresponsibility. But I like to believe that in some small way it changed Emilie’s heart. Perhaps not in a way even she really understands, yet. Perhaps it will come to the surface when things get tough, as they do in all our lives. When she is searching for strength. And she looks back to her time on the Camino. The difficult days. Physical, emotional and spiritual pain. And to remember that all she had to do is put one foot in front of the other and she would make it through. If there is a gift to give a child, I think that is a good one. The gift of resilience.

Spreading The Mother’s Day ❤️

Today, we looked over and there were no cars in our neighbor, Maricarmen’s driveway. Her kids are spending the holiday at their spouses families, I guess. It’s just her and Manu. So Jeff and I went over with the riding mower and the gas weeder and cleaned up her yard. She was so happy to see us.

This year for Mother’s Day, Jeff showered me with inexpensive grocery store gifs. Including a pinwheel for the garden. And I’m lucky because he gets another bite at that apple for American Mothers Day next Sunday. That’s when the jewelry shows up 🤞. But I don’t really care. I have everything I need. And I live on a river of positivity that reminds me every day that less is more. No jewelry required.

6 thoughts on “A Good Reminder

  • I too wish I was home to see The Way…. but what a better place to actually be…on The Way! I finish my Primitivo (via the San Salvador) in two days. I will spend two days in Santiago then head to Barcelona, where my two daughters are flying over to meet me. We will be together for Mother’s Day 💞

    Liked by 1 person

  • Thanks for the post and the podcast link, Kelli. I happened upon your blog not to long ago and have been enjoying your reflections and updates on your Camino project.

    Back in 2010, I was lucky enough to get tickets for a screening of The Way when Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez were touring the US trying to promote this film. Martin and Emilio were there at the theatre afterward for Q & A, and I had front row seats! What a treat to hear them live talking about the production of the film.

    I walked the Camino in 2004, and during the entire 30 days, I met only two other Americans. However, in my small community in the midwest, with a large active Catholic presence I might add, I’ve encountered quite a few people lately who have walked the Camino. We even have a coffee shop in our town named after St. James with a map of the Camino hanging on the wall. I, myself, have given a couple of talks on pilgrimage pre-covid, with good turnout. In our theatre, the rerelease of The Way is almost fully booked, and over the last month there have been two films shown, one done by a Wisconsin bishop on the Camino and Andrea’s Bocelli’s The Journey, which was filmed along the Via Francigena. The word is definitely out over here and the interest is growing.

    I can’t imagine a better gift for your teenage daughter than bringing her along on the Camino! Our family been planning a Camino trip, for years now due to the Covid interruption, and while our teenage son is not particularly excited about the idea, I think he’ll find meaning in it– at some point!

    Liked by 1 person

    • So glad you found the blog. The Camino is definitely catching on in the US. More every year. Especially post pandemic. It seems very popular on the coasts. Thats what we hear from those on the Frances. So its good to hear the midwest is also sold out for the screening. I think of the midwest as more Catholic, but we tend to meet Americans mostly from the west coast and the Carolinas.

      Very cool you are planning a family Camino. I love seeing families. Especially those with teenagers. A life changing trip for them, for sure.


  • Great post Kelli! I would also recommend watching “I’ll Push You”. A documentary of 2 best friends doing the Camino…one in a wheelchair. Jay and I watched that movie and walked out of the theater changing our life. We sold our business the next month and started living life…part of it Spain! They documentary was life altering for us.

    Now I’ll be retiring the end of this year and our goal
    Is to walk the Camino Frances in 2024’ or 2025…with no timeline. Just a desire to start and finish at some point…taking a day of rest if we need it or stopping longer in a town we love. And it will be great knowing that when we pass your house we can say hello and know we’re not to far from completion.

    Happy Spanish Mother’s Day to You

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes! I’ve. Seen it. The I’ll Push You teams pass by our house every year and I have volunteered to help push/pull this year. It’s blossomed into an amazing organization.

      It’s amazing how a book or film can profoundly change your perspective and your life.

      Wonderful you’re planning on walking. My last time I took 40 days. Shorter days. Stayed in towns I loved. Stopped to chat with locals. All the time in the world. It will be great to meet you in person and make you coffee!

      Happy Spanish Mother’s Day!!

      Liked by 1 person

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