Sunday, November 9, 2008

Coo coo catchoo...

We eat a lot of eggs… really. We buy our eggs from some folks here in town. We have ,at a minimum, two eggs every morning and then if I bake anything or if any recipe calls for them we can go through a dozen fast.

When we were staying at Jerry’s house I was the head chef and bottle washer and since it was me cooking I made a big breakfast every morning. That made us go through the eggs even faster. With three of us that was six eggs a morning or 1/2 dozen a day for those of you who know how to count eggs. If possible we would get 4-5 dozen at a time. The folks we got eh eggs from wondered what in the heck we did with all the eggs. Even though I am sure they love their chickens and their own eggs, they must not have been big breakfast eaters. Or maybe they are *gasp* cereal eaters, not that I am opposed to a good bowl of Captain Crunch or Count Chocula now and then.

but I would much rather see this in front of me in the morning...

Look at the avocado. Just ignore that weeping sound.

Anyway, the eggs we get are real eggs right out of free ranging yooper chickens. The prices range from $2 to $2.50 a dozen. (Go look at the eggs in your local co-op and tell me that is not a deal!) We have two connections for these eggs and as it turns out they are father/son of each other. The son and his family lived a bit closer to us while we were at Jerry’s so at first we went there for our eggs. However, it seemed that when we got eggs from the son we learned the hard way that he mostly leaves his egg collection up to his young teenage sons. Now, young teenaged sons frequently are busy with other things and have their minds elsewhere… so every once in awhile when we would get the eggs there, the eggs had been out in the yard for a few days longer than necessary.

You see when free ranging real chicken eggs have been sitting around awhile.. or shall I say being sat upon for awhile... what happens is that you crack them into your pan or bowl and they are a bit closer to a chick than a yolk than most people prefer. So instead we have started getting them from the father… who is actually the Grandfather of those same young teen boys. This has been a pretty good change as I have yet to have eyes staring back out of me from a puddle of yellow in the frying pan.

Hah. That was gross and a bit of an exaggeration …
but you will think about it the next time you crack an egg… I guarantee!

David was helping his Dad out over by the hotel on main street the other day and one of the teen boys was lending a hand as well. They were working away on something and the boy glanced down the road and says to David , “oh geez… there is that egg lady! She comes to our house like every day and gets a whole bunch of eggs!” David chuckled to himself and thought he was going to get a bit of local gossip. He thought, "well I am going to have to check this out and see who this lady is." He looked down the road to see what car the boy was referring to and well… it was me.

David laughed and said “um… Oh… ya know who that is? That's my wife.” They laughed and the boy was kind of embarrassed but not as embarrassed as I was later when David told me the story.

I AM THE EGGLADY... Coo coo catchoo!

Anyway, this particular family I have been talking about has been in this area for a long time. They are one of those families here that you realize is related and intermarried with many other families here in town. The men are all hunters. In fact, one of those teenage boys I mentioned, while he is a slow egg gatherer he is quick enough to have actually gotten his first bear this year and was the talk of the town.

Anyhoo, that was quite a build up but hang on because I am not done quite yet. Another thing you should know is that yoopers are yoopers and they are not at all embarrassed about any choice of dress they may have... or much else for that matter.

They dress and live in a style that is for the most part, strictly utilitarian and that suits me fine. However, at any time of the day, you may be driving along or stopping to visit a neighbor and he/she may be in their underwear… long or short… robe, pajamas, whatever. No one seems to be embarrassed, no one rushes to cover up. Heck, you can be driving along down the road and look over towards a house and in the picture window might be the man of the house, standing in full view from the road, in his tightie whities and cup of coffee in hand. He won't hide... he'll just wave and take another sip of coffee.

So, I go to get my precious eggs and the fella was (at least) in his sweatpants... no shirt, no shoes, whiskers and white hair all wild in the wind, and he was smoking like a chimney stack. (I should mention another thing that seems to run in this family is that as they get a little older their hearing is not what is used to be. So this was a rather noisy encounter. ) He waives me in, hollers that he has a couple dozen eggs for me, and wants to show me his recent kills. So, I follow him into the house chatting loudly. As I walk through the door, immediately on my right is a fresh coyote pelt… not quite this fresh...

but fresh enough because being rather observant I noted it still had red blood on its ears and not dried brown blood. Then I quickly scanned the room and saw there were various stuffed animals of one kind or another all around the room. A bit like Norman Bates’ waiting room at the hotel…

yes... THAT hotel. Anyway, there was a badger up on top of a file cabinet, a set of weasels with their white winter coats forever frozen in a mock play scene on top of a bookcase… birds of various kinds… and of course the obligatory deer heads on the wall. I should mention that this fellow really does have quite a reputation as a good trapper and has taught his grandsons as well (the bear hunting teen mentioned earlier). Well, we got to talking about the weasels… apparently he trapped one the other day. He told me that out in the wild, and during the right time you can trap weasels when they are wearing their white winter coats.

However, he said the one he just got was still brown. It was going after his chickens.

I know I know.. they are cute but they really are quite ferocious
and I WILL fight them for the eggs.

He pointed to the two white weasels up on the bookcase while he was talking at which time I turned my head again to look at them. While my head was turned he moved to the freezer, pulled out a bag, and before I really had a chance to think about it slid a frozen brown weaselsicle out of the bag directly into my hands.

Oh dear.

I played it off, looked the weaselsicle over real good... let him know I was pretty impressed with both his weasel and the coyote... and asked a few questions about the dens we keep finding. From my description he thinks they may be badgers. I believe I will take his word for it.

I like this next picture.

This has turned out to be a long post. Look what I found when I looked out the window this morning:

Actually, I lie. I found it much earlier than this morning. I was up around midnight and even though there was no moon you could look out our windows and see the snow in the trees, and a silhouette of deer feeding down at the molasses block we have by the woodpile. I watched them for a few minutes before I went back to bed.


  1. If fresh avocados are $2 each out here in California, we cannot imagine what they must cost in Upper Michigan. But at least you're getting a good deal on those eggs (I believe our last half dozen from the store was more than $2.50, and those weren't even the pasture-raised kind!).

    Hi from Dale and Kendra!

  2. I love that picture of the man wrastlin' those weasels. So...... can you officially call yourself a yooper yet or do you have to earn that title after time?



Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin