"Mon métier et mon art c'est vivre."
-Michel Seigneur de Montaigne
"My trade and my art is living."
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Thursday, December 13, 2012
Not bad! For a pig. Saturday May 19.
Pigs like to sleep in, strange but true. Cows and chickens are in general early risers, especially chickens who tend to be up literally with or before the sun, but pigs, like to sleep late.
On Saturdays I have been as late as 9:00 feeding the pigs (they get fed last; after the chicks, chickens and any cows living in the barn) and they are often still asleep, all 12 of them packed cheek by jowl into their little house, a mass of backs, bums, snouts and tails. In fact if it wasn’t for the racket made by feeding I suspect they would sleep much longer!
Of all the pigs here Ballsie the boar (older male pig) is perhaps my favourite. Despite being cautioned multiple times that he is dangerous, to not get in his way and never go in his pen, it is not hard to imagine Ballsie as a good natured, though somewhat slow, country gentleman.
The habit of sleeping in among pigs seems if anything to get more pronounced with age. Ballsie is kept separate from the other pigs and is fed last. Consequently it might be 9:30 or even 10:00 before someone gets down to his pen. He is always still asleep. Most days not even the clatter of fresh grain being dumped in his trough is enough to wake a slumbering Ballsie! Like most pigs Ballsie has long eyelashes which make his eyes look only half open at best. Being a boar he also has short tusks which push the corners of his mouth up into a sort of goofy smile. So Ballsie ambles about (he never goes anywhere faster than a waddle) with half lidded eyes and the beginnings of a slow smile. And between you and me, he’s got a lot to smile about, for a pig. He basically sleeps all day in the sun and has plenty of food and water brought right to his doorstep on a regular basis. His only real responsibility is to occasionally “service” one of the sows. Not bad! For a pig.