Our Pilgrim Shells

Scallop shells have long been associated with St. James and pilgrims. In medieval times pilgrims pilgrims carried shells and probably used them to drink water.  Today shells are the symbols used as way marks along the Camino, and those walking The Way still wear them on their packs to show their status as pilgrims. Chris and Rachel gave us each a shell from her shell collection. Hm…how to get holes in them? Of course, my first thought was Roger, our former Scoutmaster, a devoted backpacker, who is very handy with tools, and also happens to be a dentist.  I actually wasn’t thinking of a dental drill, but Roger assured me that one of his diamond drills would do the trick, and the shells wouldn’t feel any pain!  He did a wonderful job and found some strong stings for them. Now we are official pilgrims!  Thanks Chris, Rachel and Roger!Image.

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5 thoughts on “Our Pilgrim Shells

  1. Sarah, My friends Donna, age 71 and Brian, age 81 are going to walk the Camino. She has been blogging about their preparation and sent me this link. It was my understanding that you didn’t get a shell until you’d completed the journey. Did I misunderstand?

    • I think you are thinking of the certificate you get at the end, if you have walked at least 100km from Sarria to Santiago. The shell is the symbol of the Camino and their are signs and posts along the way with shells on them to show you the route. Pilgrims wear the shells on their backpacks to indicate that they are pilgrims. For centuries pilgrims have been treated kindly and with respect along the Camino.

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