Tuesday, April 05, 2011

The Egg Man

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Already 4:30 and the sugar snow continues to bounce off the open walkways now absent of snow after a couple day's rain. The temperature remains at 35.7° and I'm surprised the way the snow has fallen for two days at above freezing temperatures. Karl the Wonder Dog is walking around the house now, shaking here and there as he tries to rid himself of a white crystal coat. He's growling and barking nonstop as neighbors drive past the house en route home from school or work, some stopping at the mailbox for mail or to chat.

I have mentioned my egg man, Mike, who sells us the bestest, freshest eggs available from his well tended chickens. You won't find a healthier, better cared for collection where each chicken has a name and receives warm greetings several times each day. The chickens are diverse in breed and age and the egg cartons require a large rubber band to hold the lid down. Many eggs exceed jumbo size and this morning my two egg breakfast turned into a mini lottery winning as one egg was a double yoker and two eggs in the pan translated to three on the plate.

Mike called this afternoon to announce he had made a new purchase and it was prepared for display. I wanted Gail to see the three week old chicks hatched from Mike's own eggs so away we went for a quick visit.

Vermont has a number of excellent artisans and Marshfield has it's share. One is Michael Schumacher who shares the old village fire house with his son's construction company. They are both woodworkers but Michael's specialty now is woodcarving. During the past couple years he has turned to making weather vanes. He carves designs in hardwood, then hammers out sheet copper over the hardwood molds and then fits the two halves together. Here are a couple pictures of a rooster weather vane mounted on egg man Mike's chicken coop.

I first learned of Schumacher Woodworking years ago as I stood at the store across the road from the shop, pumping gas into my thirsty truck. I noticed a white owl in the window and went over to see a life size Snowy Owl looking at me no matter where I stood in the shop. Michael can carve anything and I have even contemplated commisioning a replica of my old beagle, Barney. The dog has long been at rest out back at the edge of the woods where he regulary ran rabbits but I always thought a carving would bring back the memories of my +14 year love for a dog who drove me nuts, made me worry, proud and sad, often in the same week. I haven't asked Michael to do a carving but I know he could catch every part of Barney but the bark in his carving.....and he could probably even catch part of that too!

If you're driving around this part of Vermont this summer, stop by Schumacher's Woodworking. Chances are the weather vanes out front will catch your attention. If they don't, the replica orchids hung on the wall above the entrance probably will. If you have something in mind you'd like carved, this is the place to start the discussion. As for getting on my egg man's list, don't even think about it. He's doing quite well!

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where the snow has stopped and Gail and Karl have just left for a quick walk to the pond. Two grackles are talking to a mourning dove on the platform feeder--in the evening.

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