Friday, October 28, 2011

Design and Social Change in Hale County, Alabama


20k house
Last year, I took a trip to Hale County, Alabama.  My goal was to connect with Pam Dorr, the director of HERO (Hale Empowerment and Revitalization Organization).  We arrived one spring day just in time for lunch, and she suggested we get some catfish at the local gas station, Mustang Oil. Soon, the four of us has ballooned into 10 people.  We ran into the local judge, and some long term and short term locals soon joined us, including a filmmaker from Maine, and a psychiatrist from California who has set up a live-in farm as an alternative to an institution.  Heading into the gas station, it seemed like catfish and oil would make strange bedfellows.  But, I was quick to discover it was a good one, and that Hale County was full of such unlikely combinations.