The Virtual Pilgrimage enters Spain this weekend: a preview

As an interlude between Day 55a and Day 55b (Ostabat to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port) which is coming shortly, I provide readers of Walking Out of the World with a sneak preview of the Camino in Spain: a short story.

(Previous post: Day 55a Saint-Palais to Ostabat.)

Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port pilgrim stamp

I have yet to finish writing Day 55b, probably tomorrow, and that will be a rest day in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port. Before we cross the Pyrenees to Spain I am very busy writing various things.

On the question of Church unity – which has occupied the conversation on the Camino with ‘Dirk’ (yes, he is a real person but that’s not his real name, and he won’t thank me for putting some words in his mouth!) – I am writing an article for wherepeteris.com (link corrected from earlier error, sorry!) which is a blog that tries to help those who have encountered the political ‘super-Catholics’ and sometimes have been bruised by the experience!

I have also been busy researching an article for the Ted Hughes Society journal (about the poet and his honeymoon with Sylvia Plath in Benidorm in 1956). So quite a lot of work at the moment, with one thing and another. All these pieces (and the next) need different focus and style.

I have written a short-story for the Confraternity of Saint James, the English Compostela pilgrims’ association, which was published on their website yesterday. “Menú Peregrino” is a short-story based on this blog’s Virtual Pilgrimage. In keeping with the theme of the Confraternity’s current online Festival of Art and Writing, it is a comedy designed to lighten our spirits in the present time of lockdown and look forward to the Camino being back to normal: but what is ‘normal’ on the Camino, exactly? That is the irony of the piece!

Menú Peregrino

by Gareth Thomas

Set on the Camino de Santiago, one day in the extended Holy Year of 2021-22, when everybody is out of lockdown and the Way of Saint James is teeming with pilgrims again. Manjarín is the Templar ‘Commanderie’ of Tomás el Templario. You will find some characters in the story who you have already met here on this blog! Please feel free to share this link to the CSJ site but do not re-blog my story as I have given them copyright.


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