Middlebury Magazine has just published my cover story featuring Meron Benti, an Ethiopian student who suffers from albinism, a rare genetic trait that dramatically reduces the body's ability to produce the pigment melanin. Her appearance drew unwanted attention on the streets in Ethiopia and difficulty in fitting in with the schools:
She doesn't remember her first day of kindergarten, or much of kindergarten at all. Of course, she wasn't privy to the fact that the school in her neighborhood didn't want to take her, that the teachers didn’t want to teach her, that she was thought to be incapable of learning in a "regular" classroom, and that the school administrators felt they had no way to accommodate "her differences."
She soon left Ethiopia to live with her brother in Italy, and later on, the United States. Head over to the Middlebury Magazine website to read more about Meron's struggle.
"You sit still too long, you’re out. The derby is all about hitting."
My photo story with text by Blair Kloman about the Addison County Fair and Field Days Demolition Derby is now online at The Warbler. Head over their and check out “Collision Course”.
Above is one of my favorite images from that set. There’s something about this blonde woman sitting proudly on top of her derby entry that reminds me of a Norse warrior about to ride her war horse into battle.
You can view the entire selection of images in the Demolition Days gallery.