What an extraordinary girl that is now joining us on the Camino – Carrie Lane, 15, who is related to me in two or three ways, though all of them are apparently legal. Mom has come to know her and her mother, Laurel, and her sisters quite well over the last year; they’ve been very supportive of Mom, and have visited her in Montrose several times. And the girls, especially Carrie, have really taken to Mom. Which is nice.
But I’ve never met her, and until recently wasn’t sure how she fit into the whole Colorado cosmology. Let’s see if I can work it out:
Carrie’s mother is Laurel, the daughter of one of my many Colorado cousins, Christie Powell, and Terry Lancaster (and because Aunt Jayne Powell long ago married a Lancaster, the Lancasters and Powells are sort of one family). Laurel has four girls, Rachel (18), Carrie, Grace (12), and Hayden (3). Meanwhile, Carrie’s father was in school, in Rangely, Colorado, a year or so behind me . . . So it’s all sort of overlapping.
I am still amazed that she got permission to go. What kind of enlightened school administration would let a child leave the comforts of rote learning and conformism to launch herself into the real world and see that it is, in fact, bigger than previously imagined? Carrie will learn a great deal, and I suspect she’ll learn a lot about how mature and capable a 15-year-old can be – which will give her valuable confidence as she heads into the challenges of the high school years.
As a coach, I can also say she’s also shown an initiative and passion she’ll well remember in later years: she saw a goal, that of joining my mother for five weeks on the Camino in the middle of her sophomore year of high school, and then she worked her way through all obstacles in her path – starting with first one parent and then the other until they were swayed to her vision. And then came convincing the school district of Central High in Grand Junction, Colorado, whose hand, so to speak, I still want to shake.
They won’t be sorry! She’ll pick up more than just added confidence. She’ll learn how to read a map; how to convert European measurements; all sorts of history, especially that of Spain, Europe, and Catholicism, all of which I know a bit about; the Spanish language (and thus some Latin); geography; currency conversion; and much more, but she’ll especially learn a great deal from the variety of seekers who come to the Camino from all over the world. Last but not least, imagine the education, if that’s the right word, that she’ll get from watching a sixty-seven-year-old cancer survivor walk 500 miles on feet that until recently had been too scarred from prior rounds of chemo to enable much walking.
What a major accomplishment, already, for a young woman of such tender years! She’ll remember it forever.
Which is nice.