The Masters Inn in Tuscaloosa is a cheap motel that has parties all night long and people that burn fires outside their rooms, pretty sweet! Woke up and headed to the coffee shop with Jaymee to try to figure out who to shoot today. Tuscaloosa is home to a huge fanatic football college who just won most of their games this year plus to numerous tornados which ripped through Alabama this last year more than once. Trying to do all this research by myself on the road has been super tough and i appreciate everyone that responds to my blogs/tweets/facebooks etc. Friends of friends has been my salvation and hopefully soon will have someone helping do research for interviews and things of interest for Photamerica. We wandered onto campus and went to Bear Bryant (University of Alabama’s most winningest coach (that word just sounds weird to me)) museum and saw the magnitude of football in the south. Talked to David who was a specialist there at the museum and he us about UA and the devastation that happened to his house during the tornados. Really super guy. After that they advised us to just drive down University drive and we couldn’t miss the devastation, they were right. A huge F4 or higher had just ripped through the landscape and you could see open fields in either direction. All of the slabs reminded me of Katrina, only a few families building back and lots of construction crews still clearing and salvaging (this was close to a year ago). We talked to Michael who had road out the tornado in his house and he told us about how surreal his experience was. A church across the street pretty much blew up next to his house while numerous other died on his street. His house, was magically not damaged as badly as the others and he told us for a long time of God’s message in such destructions. He was working hard to build back from a natural disaster that picks and chooses randomly what to destroy and what to leave. So sad. He told us of the immediate reactions of help from all angles but how that usually dies off once the film crews are gone and it is just them to fend for themselves putting back the pieces of what had been taken away. You couldn’t help but feel how awful situations like this are to not know what to do, when insurance companies try to cheap you, when you are pretty much on your own, I am so happy that his family was not hurt, and my heart goes out to those who lost their lives. These tornados are relentless as they bounce through neighborhoods destroying some things and leaving others almost unscathed. Everyone was effected by this one, so sad. We then drove down to the coast and got into Mobile around 7pm to have a rest at Veets Bar on Water st. Mobile and coastal gulf is wrapped up in Mardi Gras now so it was nice to see people out getting excited for parades. Love that the coast is so different for this reason alone outside of the pretty waters that start east of Alabama. We ended the night getting a place in Gulf Shores and heading the Flor Bama (a historic bar on the Alabama Florida line) for a drink and talk history with the people there. Such an emotional day and of all oddities the brightest and warmest day we have had in Alabama. Odd how that happens right? thanks all.
Can’t wait to read about this day, too, Josh. Keep up the great work, honey!
How sad it must have been to see what’s left after that awful tornado wreaked havoc on Tuscaloosa. I recognize Bear Bryant and Coach Stallings with his son. You and your Photamerica buttons are a hoot!