Friday, April 18, 2008

Working for cheese

I work extra sometimes, here and there, to earn money for living expenses. It’s not a steady side job; it’s more an on-call situation.

“We’ve got a shipment of pottery coming in, can you come help us with the inventory?” one of my contacts might say.

“I need you to send out a batch of postcards to all residents of Goshen by Friday,” another might say.

Last year, I cleaned a house once a week for a family who had put it up for sale because they were leaving the Waterbury area. It turned into twice a week once the house was on the market, and it was great for my personal economy.

Work was slow during the holidays, but now I’m back on track again. And with my recent purchase of a $750 radiator for my car, I enjoy taking a step in the right direction.

When I work, I usually have a pretty good idea of how much money I am going to make. The funny thing is, I always dedicate the money ahead of time. There is always something that needs to be paid. Last Saturday, I earned money for Albie’s birthday presents. The week before it was milk, cat food and my cell phone bill. Before that, it was money for cheese.

Working for cheese might seem crazy to some people – Albie is one of them – but I can explain.

Z., our photographer at work, lives on a farm and has relatives that belong to a food co-op. The co-op sends out Cabot cheese order forms twice a year. This is no ordinary cheese – they offer extra sharp vintageerintage extra sharp cheddar cheese, among other things.connection with a member of a food co-op. the area. cheddar cheese, among other things.

The cheddar gets better the longer it has been aged, so storing it for a while is not a problem. It comes in 2-pound bricks, wrapped in purple wax and then covered in plastic. In the fridge, it can last a couple of years – or more.

A usual cheese order for me consists of one box of vintage cheddar (12 pounds) and perhaps a couple of pounds of Cabot butter and some Muenster cheese (8 pounds). It can run anywhere from $40 to $80, depending on my cheese craving the day the order form is slipped into my hand. Expensive? Well, perhaps. But then I have cheese for six to eight months. And one block of the vintage cheddar can cost up to $15 at the store, while I get it for about $4.

I guess it pays to have connections in the cheese business. It also pays to work random jobs on the side – literally.

4 comments:

BluePlastic said...

Hee hee. That cheese does look good. I wish they still had the shredded cheese available like they did one year. I love Cabot. :)

Anne Sofie said...

I wish I lived near your cheese dealer. My bill wouldn't stop at $80 then... How I envy you!

Kristen said...

The best was when you gave Justin cheese as a birthday gift....how I loved you for that! (As did he, of course.)

Vickan said...

Shredded cheese is good. I like to keep some of that in the freezer for mac & cheese days...

I wish I could mail some cheese to Sweden, but unfortunately I don't think it would keep very well...

There is always more cheese for you and Justin here. You just have to stop by for a visit!