Homer's Travels: Camino De Santiago - Rewards And Last Words ... For Now

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Camino De Santiago - Rewards And Last Words ... For Now

This will probably be my last Camino post for a while.  There are other things happening in my life besides the Camino though at times it feels like the Camino is my life now.  So, for my last Camino post for a while I'll post three pictures.  They are pictures of the, for want of another word,  rewards of my Camino.

My pilgrim's Credential or Passport.
The stamps are from the albergues, churches, and bar/restaurants I stopped at along the Camino in 2011.
[Click on picture to see a larger version]
The credential is actually a long fanfold document.  This picture is a composite of the front and back of the credential (Two panels were left off to anonymize the picture).  The stamps, "sellos" in Spanish, start with the Saint Jean Pied de Port one on the upper left and end with the Fisterra ones of the lower right (The last panel on the bottom right are the stamps from the Fisterra legs of my Camino).  While I took a credential  I received from the American Pilgrims on the Camino organization with me, I ended up buying one (A 1€ donation) in Saint Jean Pied de Port anyway as the French ones were larger - I didn't want to run out of space.

My Compostela certifying that I arrived at Santiago de Compostela.
(I have anonymized the certificate.)
[Click picture to see a larger version]
You receive the compostela in the pilgrim's office in Santiago de Compostela.  They look at your credential.  They ask you the reason for your pilgrimage.  The certificate is given for people who do it for religious or spiritual reasons.  I don't know anyone who didn't say spiritual.  The compostela is in Latin and they look up your name in a book to find a latinized version of your name.  My name does not have a Latin version so she just wrote my name, last name first as is the custom, and handed me the compostela.

The certificate received when you finish the Camino de Santiago in Fisterra.
(I have anonymized the certificate.)
[Click on picture for a larger version]
I was surprised to find that you received another certificate once you arrived in Fisterra.  I'd stopped at the albergue (I wasn't staying there) to receive a Faro Fisterra stamp - When the lighthouse is closed, as it was when I got there, you could receive a stamp at the albergue.  After I got the stamp the hospitalera asked if I wanted a certificate and I said sure.  The Fisterra certificate is more colorful and in some ways more interesting than the compostela.

I've updated the Camino De Santiago tab adding a list of my actual stages (I did this as I've noticed that Homer's Travels is starting to receive hits from people searching for Camino information).  My credential and the Fisterra certificate have been framed.  The Compostela, my pilgrim's shell, a Fisterra shell, my albergue documents (I referred to them as my 'Bible'), a shell tile, and various cards and tickets I picked up along the Camino have been mounted in a shadowbox.  I will try to take a picture and put it on Facebook (It hasn't been anonymized).

I am already planning my 2013 Camino and I will share the plans here someday ... probably not soon though.  I want to post about my packing list, the lessons learned about what I needed to carry on the Camino, and how it will change in 2013 ... but that can wait until I've decided how it will change.

Until I post about the Camino again, Buen Camino everyone!


  1. I enjoyed your posts so much, it was the first thing I did every morning, I might have to start from the begining and read them all again. Good job.


  2. Thanks MiL. I'll start posting about our Route 66 vacation on in December.

  3. I've just pinpointed the reason why I would not like to try that pilgrimage. I hadn't been sure about how important religion and spirituality were. But now, it's abundantly clear.

  4. Gany: I'm sorry but you are SO wrong. As I said I could have walked the entire 512 miles and not talked or heard about religion. Hell, if you're scared of the pieces of paper with religious symbols then just don't pick them up. Pilgrm's mass at the end is optional as well. I met more non-religious (atheist or agnostic) people on the Camino than religious and frankly, since religion was so rarely talked about I didn't know the religious position of most of the people I met.

  5. LOL! Funny that religion would keep someone from the camino these days. I found if I really truly wanted time alone...whip out those beads!! Other than that, religion was only discussed with those who wanted to. Many were quite frank that this was a vacation for them. Hope your friend gives it a try!

  6. KSam: Everyone has a right to their own feeling I guess. If Gany and get over his phobia of religion, he will have a great time on the Camino. If not, then he'll miss out.

  7. I'll admit to having a new reason for going, My new sole purpose is to get a copy of that certificate from Fisterra. When you see the celtic tattoos on my arms when we meet you'll understand why. :) I'm also thinking to pick up two pilgrim's passports for collecting stamps, I'm sure I could easily fill two of them and I'd like to frame them and turn the 'pictures' into a matching set, although of course they'd be slightly different. Small trinkets, a couple shells, comments about the path corresponding to various Cellos written along the matting of the framing, already got it all planned out! :)

    1. Allen: Now that I'm home from China and my Mom's doing better we should arrange a time and place to meet. If you're not going to be in the Omaha area any time soon we could meet half way. I would suggest somewhere near Rockport, MO which should be almost half way between us. Drop me an email and we can coordinate (My email is in the sidebar on the right).