Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Tipping (the Maine way)

Forest Ranger Hammond checks for tipping
Photo: Tristan Spinski for the New York Times
  Forest Rangers in Washington County are busy the last couple of months each year watching for "tippers".  That's not folks eating in restaurants although they tip too.  Tipping in this part of the world means taking the tips of branches from fir trees to make Christmas Wreaths.  Tippers are people who gather the brush for the wreath industry.  Tippers need a permit from the land owners to gather the tips.  Forest Rangers are on the lookout for people without a permit.
  In Washington County (the real Downeast Maine) people mostly earn their income from seasonal jobs, the work in lobster factories, working the blueberry harvest, and tipping.  Tippers who are hard workers can earn up to $500.00 a day for a ton of brush.  You see their product when you watch the news and see wreaths on the graves at Arlington National Cemetery.
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