Wednesday, January 13, 2016
We Bought a Farm: Always something!
Okay, well, scratch that.
They grazed happily together until last week when of our little pigs figured out that our electric fence's charge had been grounded out somehow, and she could slide right underneath the fence.
JB attempted to fix the grounding issue, but just couldn't get it to work. He finally gave up and ordered some new fencing -- more designed for livestock. (Our current fencing is technically poultry netting, but you are constantly trying to find ways not to spend money when you own a farm so we tried to use it for sheep and pigs.)
I had heard pigs were smart animals, but it become obvious this week how smart they are as they quickly watched little Cinnamon slide under the wire and subsequently taught themselves how to do it too.
So now we have a paddock of sheep. And we have a bunch of pigs that are running around the entire farm completely left to their own devices -- returning whenever we come back with food or they want a sip of water or they want to sleep in their nice warm little shelter.
And otherwise ... going wherever they want.
Our immediate house and yard is fenced in -- maybe about 3 acres of land. Then, the other 95 or so acres is also fenced. There are a few spots that we need to repair due to downed trees, but basically, they can't leave the farm.
So we closed the gate to our 3 acres and left it like that. We kept Scrubs inside the 3 acres and locked the pigs outside of it. (So far, Scrubs has mingled adequately with the pigs, but we don't think leaving them unsupervised is the wisest move.)
So imagine my surprise, after piano lessons today. As always, I walk down to our not-yet-electric-front-gate to open and shut it for our piano teacher.
Normally I am joined by our dog. But today, the dog is nowhere in sight. And instead, I am joined by a black pig.
Ms. Leslie was laughing so hard as she drove off.
I was a bit exasperated.
Why and how was the pig inside the fencing surrounding our house. And where in the world was Scrubs?
So I took off with the pig. If I call, "Hey Piggie Piggie Piggie," she thinks she is getting fed and will follow me anywhere. I needed to pick the girls up from Grama's house anyways, so I start walking that way.
I notice that the gate -- which I had closed with three different apparatuses had been pushed through anyways. I later watched the pigs do it, using their heads to conquer the task. Enter Grampa who helps me tie a fourth apparatus that is currently doing the trick.
I was hoping to get our pig out of the fence around our house and that as soon as we passed through that, she'd return to the area immediately surrounding the paddock -- which is where her buddies are hanging out. But no. She decides she is going to follow me all the way to Grama's house. I tried, without fail, to get her to leave me be. But she refused. On the way, Scrubs joined us.
Once I reached Grama's I picked up the girls, left Scrubs in the house, and managed to get the pig to follow me all the way back to our neck of the woods. I had to carry Hannah by piggy-back the whole quarter-mile as she has a firm belief that the pigs could eat her.
Later, JB awoke from his pre-work-nap to ask me what in the world happened to our front yard. I took a look. That ONE pig, in maybe an hours worth of time, had nearly decimated our front yard. He nearly rooted his way to China.
I am quickly learning that farm life means "there is always something." I have always felt this way about life in general. You probably do too. But with the farm, you have this additional layer of drama brewing outside your door that is just begging to be given the room to wiggle.
Again. Love this life. But a bit overwhelmed by it some days. :)