"There's the sacred side of the Camino... There's the profane side... And, in between, there's good fellowship, the moments snatched sipping a cafe con leche or vino tinto or quaffing cerveza with unexpected new companions. Bob Ward writes deliciously of these interludes in All the Good Pilgrims."
-The Vancouver Sun
From his first journey along the Camino de Santiago, Robert Ward fell in love with the landscape, history, art and romance of this old pilgrimage path. Above all, he fell in love with the people of the Camino, both the welcoming Spaniards and the steadfast pilgrims who come from all over the world to discover what it means to travel five hundred miles, one step at a time.
In All the Good Pilgrims, Ward returns for a fifth trip along the Camino, sharing the way with a Canterbury Tales cast of characters – a wizard from Brazil, a Bavarian Buddha, a repentant French legionnaire, a hard-drinking Quixote in a wheelchair, Our Lady of the Bundle Buggy, Spice Pilgrims and Templars, and Saint James himself in the guise of a sturdy Dutchman.
Ward thinks he knows what he’s getting into, but each day brings new lessons, encounters, questions, gifts and challenges, reminding him once again that it isn’t the pilgrim who walks the Camino – it’s the Camino that walks the pilgrim.
From the Author:
The title of the book, All the Good Pilgrims, may sound sanctimonious but really it’s meant to be cheeky. It comes from something a Spanish pilgrim (Little Miguel, who appears in Virgin Trails) wrote in one of the pilgrim guest books. “Buen camino a todos los buenos peregrinos… y a los malos también!” Which is to say, “A good journey to all the good pilgrims… and to the bad ones as well!”
I admired the inclusive spirit of those words, even if Miguel meant them jokingly. I carried them with me every time I did the Camino, fingering them like a stone in my pocket as I wondered, “Who are the good pilgrims? Who are the bad ones? And who decides?” If the Camino taught me one thing, it’s that all of us – ‘good’ or ‘bad’ – are walking the same road to the same destination, and we’ve got to share that road whether we like it or not. So we might as well like it.