Birmingham lies in a valley surrounded on all sides by soft rounded foothills. My grandmother lives on the side of one of these hills (not Red Mtn.) and from her house you can see the lights of the city below. She used to tell me that they were her “diamonds,” and the city spread beneath me like a treasure chest.
The city is protected by a god. His torch used to shine red when someone was killed in an auto accident in the city on a given day, and green when someone wasn’t. There was a sort of carefulness and group mourning when one looked up to see a red light, and sense of relief and protection when the light was green.