Welcome to Strange Pilgrims.
The title is a nod to Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s short story collection of the same name. In the book he writes 12 short stories from the lives of South American immigrants living in Europe and in it manages to capture some of the joys, heartbreak and absurdity that is involved in living in a country that is not your own.
I also like the word pilgrim. Ever since completing my Camino de Santiago (an ancient pilgrimage across Spain on foot) the world pilgrim has found its way into my everyday vocabulary. It was also on the Camino that I looked around and thought what fun it must be to live along this pilgrimage route—such interesting people coming through each day, such a privilege to be able to help them along their journey.
Then it hit me.
I live in the United States, in Texas of all places. Thousands of people are pilgrimage-ing though my home each year.
I do live on a pilgrimage route.
Now that I am back home I have also gone back to doing some reading and researching on immigration. Immigration seems to be one of those topics where finding information is either frustrating (where are all the resources?) or narrow and polarized (can’t we all be civil?). I thought it would be a nice idea to have a place to keep all the resources I do find in one place—and also to help out anyone else who might be looking. Also, while statistics are compelling and I am sure we will find some of those, I want to make the discussion larger than that. Hopefully we will find some personal stories and music and art, some food and sermons and literature to flesh things out.
So, here we go--This should be fun!