It was recently brought to my attention by Karl Tangren that the situation many young people face in the Moab area today was a problem for him, too, as a young man trying to support his family and himself.
I doubt that you could find many folks today willing to do the various jobs he did just to survive in his hometown.
“If you were a young, strong and healthy man you could nearly always find some kind of work,” he explained. He also said that most jobs were very tough, demanding physical work that could be very unpleasant, especially in the extremes of the Moab weather.
“I ran a few cows out along the river. I always made money on the cows, but not enough to support the family, but I always made some money on them.” It is quite evident that Karl always was a cowboy at heart no matter how he actually made his living.
We were supposed to be talking about some caves out on Horsethief Point, but it turned out he had never noticed them. “I was looking for cows not caves back when I was in that country. That’s the only way I can explain it,” he said, shaking his head. “I’d get off one job and head out to check on the cows. Then back to town.”
Maybe things don’t change so much over time as we like to think. Sure, technology increases and the way we go about our daily lives might change. But overall, we seem to be faced with many of the same problems that Moab residents faced back in the “good old days.”
A housing shortage during the uranium boom and a lack of jobs to earn a living after the booms all went bust. It’s like I said at the beginning, the more things change, the more they stay the same. It’s an old saying but it seems to ring true in this case.
Just a thought.
– David Vaughn