Building the future, one egg at a time

Earlier this week it was time for a haircut. As anyone who knows Bluff knows, you can’t get that done here; getting a trim means taking a trip.
Some go to Moab, some go to Cortez and I, for many years, have gone to Blanding.
Stephanie is my go-to when I grow shaggy, and that means driving 25 miles north to Stephanie’s Salon.
It all started approximately 25 years ago when “Mobil Dave,” the Bluff barber, decided to move on.
Dave lived just around the corner and would show up at the trading post every four weeks or so with his clippers and scissors strapped to the back of his moped.
I would take a break from peddling turquoise and silver, we would go out on the porch, and Dave would start clipping.
In about 30 minutes I was presentable again. Dave was an accomplished barber, and ours was a convenient arrangement.
Dave was a Vietnam vet with deep scarring from that conflict and its aftermath.
Aside from seeing the horrors of war, he had dealt with the anger of the American public when he and his fellow soldiers returned stateside.
None of it had been easy, and all of it left Dave with a lot of hurt that was not healing.
From time-to-time the scabs came off, and Dave’s pain spilled out. Consequently, Dave and his wife of several years were splitting, and he was taking his moped and bugging out of Bluff.
That left me with a dilemma, either grow my hair or find a new barber.
That’s where Stephanie comes in. Stephanie had a shop in the basement of her home in Blanding.
She also had a little cow dog named Midge. Midge was an Australian Shepard/Border Collie mix and only about 20 pounds. I adored her.
Although she was small, Midge could manage the bovines. She was a working dog. Midge had a purpose, and she got the work done and done well.
Unfortunately, Midge grew old, retired from her career, and finally transferred to the great pasture in the sky.
I was heartbroken the first time I stopped by for my appointment, and Midge was gone. There were, of course, other cow dogs to replace Midge, but it just was not the same.
On my recent trip to Stephanie’s shop, I noticed a small refrigerator setting on the counter. Pasted to the door was a sign that declared, “Fresh Eggs - $3.00/dozen.”
I couldn’t help asking, and Stephanie explained it was a project she, her husband, Shawn, and their grandchildren had undertaken. Stephanie and Shawn have always had horses, cows and a variety of other farm animals.
They had recently acquired several chickens, built a coop, and were teaching their young grandkids how to care for the poultry, collect the eggs and manage their growing retail trade.
The children gather the nightly production, package them for sale, and when there is enough money in the Mason jar stashed behind the fridge, they all go to town and buy something the kids want, often ice cream.
Because it reminded me of the Traders in Training business Kira and Grange had when they were young, I signed up for the remaining two dozen.
To paraphrase Daniel Webster, when agriculture starts, art follows, so farmers and ranchers are the foundation of civilization.
With their new enterprise Stephanie and her family are hatching the future, one egg at a time. The future looks bright, and tastes good too.

San Juan Record

49 South Main St
PO Box 879
Monticello, UT 84535

Phone: 435.587.2277
Fax: 435.587.3377
Open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday