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  • I wasn't always a gravedigger. For seventeen years I was a baker. I worked at Hugo's, the main grocery chain in North Dakota. I loved it. I started as part of the crew, there at 3 a.m. making the bread dough and breakfast rolls and buns. We were known for our caramel rolls.

    In time, I became the manager. I began with seventeen employees, but eventually we got down to five. Nothing was from scratch by then; it was all mixes.

    In the end, everything was just frozen. You could hardly call us bakers anymore. And then Super Wal-Mart came in and undercut the whole operation. You can't blame people for wanting a better price. It’s tight everywhere.

    Hugo's doesn't have a bakery anymore. Everything comes in on palettes, just like at Wal-Mart and the other stores in town. I miss that smell, the smell of dough rising and baking. But if you want that, you can make bread at home.
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