Monday, October 25, 2010

A Day In The Life


Joy! My rain barrels were filled this morning. This saves me a ton of work. I was so happy when I saw it that I laughed out loud. These days I wake up the rooster. I did so today starting my morning ritual, of letting him and the other Hamburg’s out of the coop. Everyone layed an egg (except the rooster, of whom we don’t require the service). I think the paragraph I just typed may have been the lyrics to Ice-Cube’s “today was a good day”, I better check to make sure I am not plagiarizing. Kid Pig’s piglets fed – check, Kid Pig and Pigerella fed and watered – check. Now let’s just continue this blissful morn on out and check on the chicken tractors. Oh no! Chickens are supposed to be in tractors, not around tractors… Apparently there was a gusty wind that blew the lid off one. As I cruised up full speed on my forest gump lawn mower, the birds came running up to me. I am sure it is because they wanted to eat me, but lucky for me their mouths were too small. After I caught the first one, the others changed their minds and ran off. Next me and Sammy the super pup reenacted the scene from “Rocky” where he is being trained by chasing a chicken. I was the chubby Norwegian Rocky, and Sammy was a furry mick – “you got to have speed Rock”. Sammy went around the tractor and held them off while I scooped them up. Amazing what that poor dog can do without his owners knowing how to train him. He was so ecstatic to get to herd something he was jumping in the air. Speaking of air, above us the local birds of prey were circling to offer clean up assistance should we miss anything (one of the main reasons why they are in tractors). I began to lecture the chickens. With the kids gone this weekend, I think I needed to be paternal at something. That was ill received and unsuccessful. After moving the tractors, we went over to water the pasture pigs. Sammy was so amped on herding that he flipped out and couldn’t stop doing his “jump and bark” at the pig fence. Finally I found myself between him and the pigs and he bit my leg. I think he quickly realized I only taste a little like pig, and quickly shied away. I threw my bucket and yelled “no”. He sulked under the gump tractor, and just sat silently for the rest of the time. If he had a paddle ball at the time he probably would have played it.
The ground is getting real soft with the rains. This makes the pigs go through the pasture a lot faster. They dig up huge clumps of soggy sod and flip it over finding bugs and roots. Bummer for me, a lot of times they drop these clumps on the electric fence, shorting it out creating a gateway to piggly freedom. I continued my ritual of walking the fence line, removing the clumps. Everything is well, time to gear up to give some friends a farm tour in a few minutes. I found a quick minute to throw down some breakfast and another cup of joe. I was watering the chickens when our visitors arrived. I started my usual tour, and when we got within visibility of the pasture pigs, my friend said “It looks like one of them is not in the fence”. Words like that always send a shock through me more than the fence itself. We ran out there to assess the situation. Surely, Strawberry was out having her own tour of the farm. I was just telling everyone how they can bury the fence, and not 20 minutes from when I had just unburied it, they reburied it, all stinking wires! The young pigs were starting to follow after strawberry. I could barely find the fence. I quickly started digging through deep clumps of mud and grass, trying to restore some sort of order to this circus. I got the fence out, but it was broken in one place. Hmm… how does farmer Joel tie the fence back together without getting defibrillated? If I run back to turn it off, everyone will escape. I managed to use two fence posts like chopsticks to form a square knot, tensioning with my rubber boot. Now why is it when I am tying knots with my feet, and holding the shocking fence of perpetual death with giant chopsticks, I get the most random obscure calls?
Me: Hello, this is joel (foggy glasses, clutching phone between shoulder and chin)…
Caller: (In a smuckers like grampa tone) I understand you are selling a resonator guitar on craigslist…
Me: yes sir that is me….

Caller: well I don’t want to buy it.

Me: Oh, uh um otay er…

Caller: You see I am selling my resonator, but I don’t know how much it is worth, I was hoping you could tell me…

Me: I am sorry sir you should talk to an appraiser…

Caller: Speek up sonny I don't hear well.

ME: Appraisor…God have mercy on me..Ap-rais-or...

Caller: I don’t know one, do you?, whats happening, something is happening with my phone, I have a friend who uses the internet..….

Long story short, I learned far too much about this nice man, at a very wrong time. The fence somehow was back up, It wasn’t pretty, but it was functioning. I had my buddies start chucking treats into the middle of the pasture to lure the piggies in away from the fence, and draw strawberry back in. As soon as she saw the treats, she slipped under the fence as I lifted it up (with a spare post). With everyone in their proper place, I went back to take care of some farm sales, and start another tour. Guess what the first question of the next tour was? I am sure I don’t need to tell you. Yes sir you are correct, those pigs are out of the fence... They had already buried the fence again. I decided it was time to get their new pasture built so they will keep their digging away from the fence line. Good thing this torrential rain is here now so we don’t get too hot while we work :). I guess you can’t have all sunny days and full rain barrels too. The new fence went up quick, and just in time. As soon as I had the exterior up and charged, the pigs buried the betweener fence and marched on through, I didn’t even have to ask them. After they passed, I just put it back up, and voila! Next I put up their tent shelter, with the usual assistance in the form of a couple pigs sitting on the tarp while I try to hang it, and another doing tug of war while I tie it. I then rechecked the fence line. All is well. Seeing a new fence up always gives me a feeling of satisfaction. Seeing how happy the pigs are knee deep in buffet always makes me happy too. I asked them all several times today as they were burying fences faster than I could recover them….seriously, could you really be that hungry? Whether they are hungry or not, they eat like a black hole. I think they are having a growth spurt. They are starting to get to that size where you are less telling them what to do than offering polite suggestions. With all the disasters of the day resolved, I hopped in there with the pigs for their daily ear scratches and belly rubs. I explained that I didn’t mean all those nasty things I said earlier. They just stood there quiet with mouths full of dandelions. By now it was getting dark, so I needed to squeeze in one more move for the chicken tractors before they doze off. Me and Sammy both looking like soggy mops, locked the Hamburg’s in their coop, and went to dry off. Canned Heat is on the radio and life is good. Should you need to borrow a pig to dig a Chunnel or would like some tasty pastured pork sausages, give me a call. Just don’t call to tell me you are not buying my guitar.

2 comments: