Our pig saga continues. Having replaced our very rare boar that perhaps had not done as he should with an older, proven close relative of his [his Uncle], we now discover that perhaps he had actually been alright after all.
A few more weeks should hopefully produce the evidence we desperately need. In the meantime his immediate death sentence has been lifted and he is now amusing himself in the empty cattle shed digging for tasty treats of old barley that had fallen behind the troughs where the cattle couldn’t reach.
The cattle were turned out this week too and we had a major rodeo as we let over fifty cattle out on to the lush spring grass. Every year is reassuringly the same – the cattle trumpet their joy at being let out as they run down the road kicking their heels in the air. It never fails to lifts one’s heart especially as the task of feeding them twice daily with home grown cereals and homegrown hay or silage is lifted. One old farmer friend used to state: ” The day of bondage is ended for another year”, until November when it all starts again with the next batch of calves to be weaned.
While examining the sows who are very quiet and really quite tame for pigs I made the terrible mistake of stepping over one very friendly girl to try to read her ear tattoo. I had one leg on each side of this chattering supine pig [who always chunters away as if she is having a full conversation] this proved to be a major error. Even with my glasses on I struggled to read the number and she got a bit fed up with me turning her ear inside out and peering at her. So she stood up. As a full grown sow this meant I was now completely astride the pig, with no way for my feet to reach the ground. “Uh oh” I thought “this could be painful”.. and with my hands I pushed down on her back to try to ease myself off her. This extra pressure to her to her meant “go” and she shot off across the orchard to join her friends with me on her back. “What are you doing?” came the cry from across the pens.. “Trying to get off” said I. Shock turned to laughter, both from those on the ground and from me on top of the pig, which made it worse as I couldn’t laugh and get off at the same time.
The sow decided she’d had enough – and gave a sharp turn to the left and humped her back firmly depositing me onto my knees on the hard ground. My pride took the greatest fall, although more than a week on I still bear the bruises, and I definitely won’t being doing that again..