It’s December, and the weather outside is frightful. But inside the Co-op snowflakes float above the checkout stands and the cashiers are busy.
Among their friendly faces, Taylor Wells’s smile shines brightly as ever, and I invite her to sit and visit over cups of hot tea. Taylor has been a cashier here since December 2014, and in August she was promoted to a leadership position in the front end team.
Taylor moved from Seattle to the Palouse a year ago, a few months after her boyfriend arrived in Pullman to begin his studies at WSU. She frequented her local co-ops in Seattle, and she tells me that when she checked out Moscow’s, she liked the atmosphere right away. “The layout is so inviting, and also I’m a big foodie, so naturally I applied for a job here,” she said.
Taylor has grown to appreciate the community at the Co-op. “I love my co-workers. They’re super!” she told me, adding that she enjoys her interactions with the customers as well. She likes getting to know the people she sees here again and again.
Together with her boyfriend, JC, Taylor lives in Pullman. JC will finish his bachelor’s degree in Viticulture and Oenology next fall and move right into working on his Master’s degree in the field. Taylor plans to start working toward her own bachelor’s, in Food Science, with an emphasis on fermentation. “JC wants to work in biotech, in the winemaking field. My own goal is beer making,” she told me. The couple’s long-term goal is to run their own brewery.
In addition to beer making, which Taylor says she already does at home, she likes to cook and bake. “I’m developing my cooking,” she told me. JC’s mother has a restaurant, and has taught Taylor to cook Mexican food. Other spare time pursuits revolve around fun with her two Weimaraners, Niner and Lolo Bones, who enjoy camping and bone chewing.
Adding to this busy schedule, Taylor and JC are about to begin training for the Yellowstone half-marathon, which will take place in June. She hopes to attract some of her co-workers to this goal, and she welcomes well-wishers to come along and camp out in Yellowstone and cheer her on.
Naomi’s dog, Poppy, also loves bone chewing by the camp fire, and in her dreams, she runs with the wolves in Yellowstone.