Sunday, 8 May 2011

Camino bore: Lincolnshire scallops

 ...and here are the scallop shells in the capitals of the pillars at Northorpe in Lincolnshire, near Gainsborough. Northorpe is a very Adlestroppy kind of a place with a hundred or so inhabitants, and this lovely St. John the Baptist church where about 10% of the population worship on Sundays. Is the dedication the reason why there are scallop shell decorations, for scooping up the baptismal water? We shall never know; the memory is lost.

But we find that Compostella-consciousness is rather low in England. When in Spain, we met several Irish people, and discovered that Irish radio programmes regularly offer a prize of  a camino's-worth of air travel. English people often have never heard of the pilgrimage to Santiago, and when some of it is explained look puzzled and ask 'Are you being sponsored?' St. James' church in Grimsby has been re-named 'Grimsby Minster'; we are a bit alarmed.

But the new film 'The Way' will probably go a long way to changing some of that. I hope it doesn't make the thing so popular that there won't be room for me next time.

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