The Dart: Vidalia man searches for pecans, new job in area

Published 12:43 am Monday, November 21, 2016

VIDALIA — Because of the area’s low paying jobs in his field, one Vidalia man is debating a move back to Dallas.

When The Dart found Darnell Walls on Magnolia Street in Vidalia, he was in his god-sister’s yard picking up pecans. Walls had two plastic bags full and was planning to bring them to a guy on Hickory Street to sell them.

“I’ve been out here about an hour,” he said. “Yesterday, I made $22 for two bags.”

Email newsletter signup

Walls said he did not mind picking pecans, as he had been doing it most of his life around this time of year. It gives him an opportunity to be outdoors, which Walls said he enjoys.

“I don’t really like being in the house,” he said. “I like being outside. There’s more to do.”

The problem, pecans aren’t as abundant as they typically are to create good work this year, he said. But there’s another reason to pick, as Walls said he also enjoys when his family makes praline out of his pecans.

“I love pecans,” he said. “I love pecan candy — my sister will make it when I get the stuff.”

Walls said he works at Walmart, which is the best paying job he could find in the area. Unfortunately, he said he is not full time, so he is considering a move back to Dallas.

“I was born and raised here in Vidalia,” he said. “I left, and went to Atlanta, and then I went to Dallas. Now I am back here, but probably not for good.”

Walls said he has experience working in nursing homes, but he couldn’t find a similar job here that paid enough.

Working in the nursing homes is a good calling, he said.

“It is fun,” he said. “You get to talk to the patients and get to know them.”

If he could find a job that paid a decent rate, Walls said he would rather stay in Vidalia. It is where most of his family lives, and Walls said he likes the slow pace.

“It is slow, and there ain’t no robberies,” he said. “I go back to Dallas, and I’ll see everything. They are wild.”

Walls said he has two sisters who live in Dallas, so he’d at least have some family nearby.

“In the big city, there is a lot of work,” he said. “There is nothing down here to do.”