April 21, 2006


A nice article in today's Birmingham News about a little place that I used to drive through and marvel at whenever I went from Birmingham to Auburn or back.

It sounds as though they have found themselves with quite a population of characters, straight out of some Gothic Southern Lit clearinghouse.

My own recollection of the place, however, is one of intense melancholy. The old homes I would see as I rolled through were for the most part well-tended, with a few that weren't. It was the few old commercial buildings, though, that had long ago given up the ghost, and driving through on Old 280--especially on days that weren't particularly sunny--frankly gave me the shivers.

And it gave me that odd sad feeling you get, when you go to a place where the signs of the vitality of the past still cling. I get that feeling whenever I go visit the small towns in Walker County where my folks grew up. People still live there, and some quite well, but you still see the imprint of a much headier time, when promise spread out large.

Posted by Terry Oglesby at April 21, 2006 10:09 AM