For many days now I’ve had David Bowie’s song Young Americans playing in my head. It’s a sign that I have to write about the Americans that I saw on the Camino. I’m proud of all my fellow Peregrinos no matter what their nationality may be but I have to say that, naturally, I hold a special place in my heart for my fellow Americans.
Why Young Americans? Well, it’s because the first Americans I met on Camino while crossing the Pyrenees were young students from Indiana College in Pennsylvania. They were doing the entire Camino as part of a class for college credit! Each of them was assigned a particular town or Saint that they would encounter on the Camino. When they arrived at that town or encountered the particular saint then they would have to make a presentation on the significance of the town or Saint to the entire group and their professor. I encountered the group many times, the last time being in Viana before losing touch with them. I wish that when I was their age I would have had an opportunity to walk the Camino and learn the life lessons I have learnt as a result.
These young students were not the only Americans on the Camino. Indeed, everywhere I went the Spaniards were telling me that they have never seen so many Americans!! Hardly a day day went by when I didn’t meet one or hear an American voice. I met Americans from California, New York, Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and many more states. So here’s a salute to my fellow American Peregrinos and if you listen to the lyrics of Young Americans you’ll be disappointed because it has nothing to do with the Camino de Santiago.
Allright! They were the Young Americans…