"We must achieve the character and acquire the skills to live much poorer than we do. We must waste less. We must do more for ourselves and for each other. It is either that or continue merely to think and talk about changes that we are inviting catastrophe to make. The great obstacle is simply this: the conviction that we cannot change because we are dependant on what is wrong. But that is the addict's excuse, and we know that it will not do."
—Wendell Berry

Sunday, 2 June 2013

We've got piggies!

A few days ago I found a happy Mum and a litter of nine piglets. For a first time Mum, not bad at all. Unfortunately she rolled on one a couple of nights after so we now have eight remaining but they are all in rude health and are doing well.
It is still a bit muddy after the rain. We have had a rather unseasonal bout of rain in the time of year when it should be drying off. A good thing the young feller and I shovelled a load of gravel into the pen recently or these piglets would be swimming. Oh I long for the opportunity to cement this pen!
 Sausage is eating like she means it! She has to produce a never ending flow of milk for the youngsters and this means she is always hungry. For a first time mother she is doing very well. She is very protective of her young and I have had to seriously watch my step if I try to enter the pen. Despite this I think it is a good trait for a mother to have.
 Today we have finally had clear weather and blue skies. I spotted this Grey Goshawk perched high up on a dead tree branch. They are usually a very shy bird and I was surprised I was able to get this close.
I also had a visit from a young King parrot. He perched in the elder over the pig pen and had a cackled conversation with us. There has been a great congregation of Kings about today. I counted eighteen of them in one tree over the orchard this afternoon. Odd as I was under the impression they were a very solitary bird and lived in small family groups only.
I am working at a great pace in the workshop, especially when the rain is sheeting down. I have been getting the cold room completely finished in preparation for killing a steer on Tuesday- installing meat hanging rails and general sealing. I repaired and sheathed a power cable against rats for the freezer. We found they had chewed through the last one and the freezer was undergoing a rat-defrost cycle. I have also made a brass dipstick for the milk bucket. We were tired of counting each milking out, one litre at a time, and so I measured the increments in the milking bucket and etched them onto a brass strip. I have also repaired six second hand chairs for use outdoors and cut new followers for the baskets in the cheese press.
It is good to be busy and I am enjoying my energy. Work has been very hard lately and I find keeping busy at home is an excellent way to banish the demons and regenerate before the next round.

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