Thursday, December 30, 2010
Source: Beliefnet. The pig is the symbol of good luck in Vienna, Austria. Pigs are let loose in restaurants and everyone tries to touch them for luck as they run by. In private homes, a marzipan pig, with a gold piece in its mouth, is suspended from a ribbon and touched instead. In Greece, it's customary to throw a pomegranate wrapped in silver foil on the threshold, to spread the seeds of good luck for an abundant year.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
And then I have to look for number Six. There's always one pig who is lagging behind. Snoozing under a tree. Holed up in the straw in the hoop house. Investigating something of great porcine interest.
These Large Black Hogs show up in stark relief against the bright white snow. But you should try to feed jet black hogs in the pitch dark of early early in the morning before you have to drive into town to go to your day job. I crawl over the fence with a bucket of feed in hand, Coleman lantern dangling from a post, straining to see.
Then I hear them.
A dozen cloven hooves coming right at me until they are bunched up in a heap, a low lying storm cloud, a squealing mob of onyx pigs around my knees. Plus one straggler. I do the math, and realize that I am surrounded by at least a thousand pounds of very very hungry hogs, pressing their snouts against my shins and wringing their tails. I should probably be worried as they cling to me like keening remora fish as I make my way to the feed trough. Instead, I am thankful for good balance.
On this winter solstice, the darkest day of the year, I am very happy to think of the sun beginning to trace a higher arc across the sky as the days begin to get longer, a little bit of light at a time.
I am also very glad that my large Large Black Hogs have much better manners than this unruly, but positively lovely, horde.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
I love the peace, the utter contentment, of the barn on a snowy winter afternoon.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Large Black Hog Tater is one handsome boar. He is also a complete gentleman. Which is a good thing, because at a year and a half he's the size of my kids' old pony (500 + pounds) and has armor. No kidding. This big pig is as iron clad as the Black Knight himself.
This being the first boar I've ever had, I was surprised when I was scratching Tater's various itchy spots about 6 weeks ago, which I am pretty much politely requested to do every morning at breakfast time when he sidles up alongside of me, rumbling and grumbling, and discovered that this big critter has grown armor plating, a thick protective layer, along his neck, his shoulders, and down his ribs. No wonder ancient peoples had boars on their coats of arms. No wonder today's wild boar hunters talk about the armor of their prey.
This Large Black Hog boar is a rugged creature. (Who will flop over on his side in a heartbeat for a good belly scratching ...) The kids are no longer in grade school, or I would be tempted to take this boar in for show and tell, like we did with their old spotted Pony of the Americas. (Not!) What a good impression we would have made.
Tater's tusks are starting to peek out as well. Now that's going to be truly impressive.