Puente La Reina

Yesterday Elizabeth was in Puente La Reina. I have a fondness for Puente La Reina and not just because Reina was named for this town. It’s more an affection born from years of hearing your Puente La Reina stories. And yesterday as I heard Lizzy’s Camino Three Puente La Reina story, my affection and awe about the energetic wisdom and power of the place and its Flower Essence only increased.

Since first offering this Essence in 2008, we have seen you reach for Puente La Reina Flower Essence when looking for support to ditch personality driven obligations, burdens, preoccupations and relationships to go to a new place of connection to people and situations that genuinely support your authentic selves. Since this Flower Essence helps us all make an upgrade in relationship and life circumstances, I have gotten to hear a lot of inspiring stories about your work with this Essence.

Those of us here in the office often refer to an event in someone’s life by the name of one of the Camino Essences. It’s a useful shorthand for us as we work to serve you with the best Essences. We often say, ‘a Puente La Reina’ moment to mean a significant turn in someone’s spiritual journey, a moment when someone is ready to let go of seriously burdensome or obscuring baggage and get on with the real work of his or her life. We are always happy when it’s a Puente La Reina moment for you.

There are so many mysteries about why each of us hit Puente La Reina moments when we do. Our spiritual journeys have a certain order and underlying purpose in their orde, but a lot of this order is beyond my understanding. Some of it remains paradoxical to me. But a little bit more clarity about Puente La Reina’s geographic position and the purposefulness of its placement on the Camino on the far side of Pamplona came to me when I got Elizabeth’s email yesterday.

Elizabeth was nudged to go on this Camino in July, and this meant traveling through Pamplona at the height of the San Fermin festival. In yesterday’s email, she noted that this timing has given everything up to Puente La Reina a strange party party party feeling with most of the pilgrims on the trail out of France focused on getting wasted in Pamplona. As she traversed Pamplona, the scene proved beyond the imaginings of even the most jaded of college students. I know I come from puritanical stock and therefore don’t get a lot of things in the culture, but her description made me think pretty much anyone on Earth would think the scene in Pamplona extremely unsavory.

The energy of Puente La Reina with its clarion call to lay down personality driven agendas and ego preoccupations seems to mark both a point in our lives and on the Camino when we get real about what matters and go forward with much greater clarity about our choices. Having stood in stark contrast to the energy of San Fermin and the Pamplona party energy for so very long, Puente La Reina offers real vibrational strength about getting us to get real about our choices and move on in ways profoundly more in alignment with our eternal selves than what went before.

Here is Elizabeth’s description of her Puente La Reina Essence as it connected to her first Camino when she made the Flower Essence for the first time.

Keynote: Clarity
Lightening your energetic load and being clear about whom you travel forward with. Learning discernment about who sees your worth and can actually support your growth.

Puente la Reina is the city where I spent my third night on the trail. Previously I had walked with a man from Denmark who had been part of the original group that I started with on the first day. During this day, I walked ahead when he needed to slow down due to his knees. This departure happened on the outskirts of Pamplona, a city famous for the running of the bulls. This moment of moving ahead was one of clarity. It was a moment when I knew that I needed to keep moving forward and that there were other souls further ahead who could better support me in my journey. Because this man reminded me of a person with whom I had recently parted, this was a big moment for me.

That night in the albergue I met a charming German boy with whom I had much in common. Like myself, he had been a teacher. Like myself he was trying to figure out his life. I was encouraged by my first taste of being with young people. Before this moment, the trail had felt full of older people either on their own or in couples. That evening, before everyone disappeared off to bed, I asked the young man if he would like to walk with me the next day. He told me that would be ok if we woke up around the same time, our pace was the same, and it just happened. “Yea sure, whatever.” he said. This was not the enthusiastic response I was hoping for. If he did not want to make the effort in the smallest way, then I needed to go on and seek people who would. The trail was teaching me discernment about my choices of traveling companions and my worthiness to travel with kindred spirits.

In Puente la Reina, I also lightened my pack by leaving behind my heavy, but brand new sleeping mat. I left it with a gulp in the albergue, but did not miss its weight and bulk on my back for one minute. On the trail everything in one’s pack must be essential. Flushing out all the things that were not needed was a favorite pastime. I found the practice could be almost completely translated to all the things we carry internally as well. Hence, I set off before sunrise in the company of two Italians who spoke not a lick of English, in an effort to lighten all types of loads.

PS After I posted this blog, an email arrived from Elizabeth written as she departed from Puente La Reina- She hadn’t read this post nor had we talked about Puente La Reina in our emails, yet in that wonderful Camino way of things, it felt like we were mid- conversation about all that I was thinking about.

She noted that until Puente, the Camino had felt like a trail of ghosts, certainly a more poetic way to describe personality preoccupations we need to jettison even as they don’t have much life force in our lives anymore.

She also said Puente continued to feel like the place to be washed clean of all the shadows. She noted that the mood on the Camino feels more edgy than on her other Caminos, and that everyone seems to feel a certain sense of the world and its spirituality being in the throes of big changes. Perhaps as things continue to unfold, Puente La Reina will serve the collective paradigm shifts of humanity as well as our individual ones. I feel it is up to the task.


The Camino is a place but it’s also a metaphor. As I read and reread Lizzy’s book, I feel both supported in my own Camino and also tapped into the archetypes of all our spiritual journeys. That’s what makes her story both timeless but relevant no matter what generation we hail from or where we are on our own Caminos.

With Lizzy on the literal Camino again, it feels like a natural time to see how her harvest of Flower Essences from her 2008 Camino continues to support all of us on our spiritual journeys. Having just received an email from her, we know she is in Roncesvalles, the place where Roland died blowing his horn after the battle of Roncesvalles in 778 BC.

Here’s the information from our Guide about her Roncesvalles Flower Essence, describing the Essence as well as what was happening for Elizabeth on her first Camino in 2008 when she made this remedy.

Keynote: Courage
Being able to summon the strength to take the first step in a journey. Allows the body to access the reserve of energy needed for the initial change into new ways of being.

As I sat in the pilgrim’s office in St. Jean Pied de Port, I wanted to begin my pilgrimage, but conventional wisdom suggested I had arrived at the starting point too late to do the first day’s 25km/15 mile walk up and over the Pyrenees into Spain. Yet, I was very eager to start. Then again, part of me was unprepared to hike that day. I was wearing long pants and my bag was filled with extra food and stuff that I had planned to jettison before hitting the trail. But a group who had arrived on the train with me had decided to begin, so I quickly joined their pace and set off. I needed reserves of physical energy that first day when I climbed up and through the mountains. And for that reason the Flowers that I collected on those open plains and lush mountaintops helped to fuel the first leg of my journey. When I got to the first night’s destination of Roncesvalles, I knew the trail had already given me the gift of the strength to begin.

Prying the Camino Guidebook from MayMay’s paws, I read that Roncesvalles means “valley of thorns.” Fitting really, as this is what it feels like to begin almost any journey. Even when a journey looks as inviting as Lizzy’s photo of coming down into Roncesvalles on her first Camino,


with almost any journey, there is some element of MUD and other complicating factors that call us to be discerning and also call us to act on our discernment ( If you have read her book, you know what buttons were being pushed here in this photo- and if you haven’t read the book yet, for heavens sake, get a copy from us!).


But perhaps I am getting ahead of the story here. What is most important about Roncesvalles Essence is that it supports us to find the courage to begin, and no matter the journey, inviting, muddy, full of alarm bells or even one that leaves us traveling while staying in one place, the courage to begin is key.
A Green Hope Farm friend phoned this morning to say she felt her Flower Essences had never been more needed or more called upon to be their most powerful. Another Green Hope friend described it yesterday in a slightly different way, “The energy of this time is so dramatically in flux, it makes a huge difference to have (the Essences) gentle but powerful support.”

The journey of these times has come out to meet us. The energies on Earth are in the midst of radical change, and we have to adapt to meet these rising vibrations flooding the planet. Right now it is a Camino that all of us must travel.

We have to once and for all detach from the illusions that interfere with our collective destiny. We have to embrace and embody the light flooding the planet, this light that is here to take us safely across this spiritual passage to new ground.

We have to do it now, not next week. No matter how we have prepared over the years, it is radical change that is expected from us now, not a talking the talk but walking the walk sort of change.

I like the support of Roncesvalles to help us do exactly that- walk the walk.

Go Team!

It is six am. I am dressed for success.

Go Revolution! Go Azure! Go Espana!

That strange white object running interference with me getting my breakfast?

(And note to the chef de cuisine. Breakfast is jamon. I refuse to eat anything but spanish food for the next thirty five days.)

Yes, that bizarre white thing where my breakfast should be? It’s my new love object. William tells me if I nose it around the fields 24/7 ’til Lizzy comes home I can be the mascot on his team this fall AND be a soccer diva too.

Go team! Now, jamon, please.

As a community of Flowers, Angels, Nature Spirits, Dogs, Cats and even some People, Green Hope Farm can be a funny place……and I love telling you all about it!