Thursday, August 27, 2009

Camino Books

Training isn't the only preparation for a long distance trek, so besides walking and hiking and enjoying beautiful places in nature, I have been studying and learning about trekking and in particular about the Camino de Sanitago.

Reading and learning are two pleasures that I never seem to get enough of. So the research and reading have been a enjoyable part of my preparation.

Of the many books that I have read, here are two of my favorites.

"Walk In A Relaxed Manner" by Joyce Rupp

Joyce is a nun, spiritual writer and retreat leader. When she turned 60, she walked the Camino de Santiago with Tom Pfeffer, a long time friend and retired priest. The book was born of this journey.

The subtitle and theme is "Life's Lessons From The Camino". Each chapter tells about how she grew from making the pilgrimage.

It is full of spiritual insight and practical advice. I enjoyed her gentle "voice", as she makes observations of the lessons learned on her Camino trip.

A must read for all planning to walk the Camino, as well as for those looking for insights into themselves and life in general.

Of all the Camino books I have read, this one is by far the best.

"I'm Off Then: Losing and Finding Myself on the Camino de Santiago" by Hape Kerkeling

Hape Kerkeling is a famous German comedian and actor. At age 36, the self described "pudgy couch potato", set out to walk the Camino de Santiago. This lively and entertaining book chronicles his Pilgrimage.

He is well loved by in Germany for his antics and this is the book that has driven Germans in record numbers to walk the Camino. And I can see why. His stories are humorous and his witty and hilarious accounts of fellow pilgrims are real life.

His Camino experience is interesting and wonderfully told. It is hysterical and yet also spiritual.

AND MOST IMPORTANTLY...he dedicated the book to his grandma. That alone makes it a winner for me. He mentions her often in his book. It seems she was a driving force in his life. Anyone who listens to the lessons their grandma offers is OK in my books!!

One of the better Camino books I've read.


  1. Hi Rita, I am so proud of you for taking this great opportunity. I know you will love it---and I hope you will be in contact with us throughout your adventure.

    I don't hike those kinds of long distances, but I'm sure I don't hike/walk relaxed. Sometimes my back will hurt so bad---and it's because of my posture especially while walking uphill. I need to learn to stand up TALL and yet relax when I hike. That book sounds interesting.


  2. Hi Rita,
    The Rupp book interests me. I'm going to look it up - I just got a Kindle, so I'll see if it's available for that.

  3. Hi Betsy
    Thank you for your kind words. Yes, I hope to be able to blog regularly.
    I get many aches a pains when I walk or hike too. I think it goes with the age. Hehe!! But I keep on going. The downhill is worse for knees usually start screaming!!

  4. Hi Barb
    I really enjoyed her book. If she does a retreat in my area, I am considering going to it.
    Hope you're enjoying your Kindle. I have heard good reportsfrom friends about them...nice for traveling.

  5. Your proposed adventure sounds fascinating. The books sound like they'd be well worth reading.

  6. Hi Janie
    I can't wait, I know it will be an exciting and rewarding experience(as well as physically and mentally challenging)
    I recommend both books, even if you are not planning on a pilgrimage.

  7. Hi rita,

    I'm off on my adventure Monday. So, no more internet for a while. Have a wonderful time and I look forward to reading all about your trip when I get back.

  8. Ron Thank you. I hope you enjoy your trip, also

  9. Hi Rita...
    I wish you well on your wonderful journey...I'm rooted in my hometown too and love to read of the adventures of others...although I myself am a stick close to home person...
    Thank you for visiting me this weekend...I really look forward to following you on this trip.
    "Walk In A Relaxed Manner" by Joyce Rupp is on my list to read...thank you!


  10. Wanda
    Thank you for stopping by and for your well wishes.
    I hope you like Joyce Rupp's book. I like her style of writing.

  11. Thanks for those two leads Rita, they may whet my appetite for the North of Spain...

    happy preparations...

  12. Rita the 'word' for me was:


    I think that is something you may need to take with you to get the feeling of flying back into those tired muscles...

    Happy days

  13. Hi Delwyn
    I hope you enjoy the 2 books.
    tinkrub...never heard of it...I will look into it. Thanks

  14. How wonderful that you can read books about the journey you will be taking!I love the title "walk in a relaxed manner". I feel that much of life can be enhanced with done with a presence that is relaxed. Not everything, but lots.

  15. Hi Tammie Lee, you are so right and the book is geared to exactly that, Joyce used her Camino lessons as a methaphor for life's lessons.

  16. Hi, I've read a recommendation for Joyce's book somewhere else too so I think I'll get it. Another book I really liked about the Camino was Paulo Coehlo's (have I spelt his name correctly?) The Pilgrimage. I'm about to start Shirley MacLaine's book - or restart to be more accurate - I originally read it about 7 years ago - some bits I liked - some I didn't but it originally got me interested in the Camino so I owe her a bunch of thanks.