Saturday, 19 July 2008

Pig Daddy

Listening to: Truth and Lies (The Levellers)
Weather: damp and windy
Don't touch: it hurts
Here's one: for all you grapple fans

"Hang on, you're an office worker, you bloody idiot!"

My body sometimes talks to me like that. I was in Kirkwall and my arms were in spasms after my introduction to all-in pig wrestling.

"I can't pull the handbrake on," I said, through gritted teeth. Mrs Sort-of Pig Farmer obliged, then handed me a bottle of Lucozade.

The SPFs were out and about delivering piglets and everything was going pretty smoothly. True, the piglets had refused to follow the bucket into the trailer and I'd had to pick them up one-by-one, squealing and wriggling (the piglets, not me) and drop them into the small, but perfectly formed Ifor Williams trailer, while stepson Pat stood guard. But we had got down in time for the ferry and made all our rendezvous with the minimum of fuss.

Extracting the piglets proved to be just as tricky as putting them in, involving me climbing in the front door of the trailer grabbing a leg and hauling reluctant, protesting animal out. There were 12 to deliver and each time I felt as if I'd done a couple of rounds with Giant Haystacks.

I'd have been all right had I not spent the previous two days mixing concrete. We (stepson Pat, friend Eric and myself) were putting in the kitchen floor, the first step in the renovation of the house. Sal always tells me I charge straight in, bull-at-gate style, and then wonder why I'm in pain afterwards. She has a point, but I don't quite see how you can ease yourself in when mixing concrete.

Anyway, the upshot was that after three days of very physical activity, I had not only the highest respect for builders, labourers and real farmers, but arms that wouldn't really work.

On the plus side, 12 of the piglets are now settling in to new homes and the croft has some income. Two jobs well done.

A little light weeding today, I think.

* A couple of references may be incomprehensible to non-Brits or anyone under 40 who never saw the wrestling on World of Sport. I suggest you Google Shirley Crabtree.


Ginni Dee said...

Having wrestled piglets before, I know what you're talking about. It's a real chore!! I recall being very sore the next few days too. And I was quite a young lady when I did older than mid-teens.

Congrats on the income...that has to be a good thing!

ziggi said...

I think you'll have to drop the "sort-of" from your name. Having raised and then eaten/ing the first pigs; you have brought-up and sold others, presumably for real money.
I think this qualifies you as Mr Real-Pig-Farmer.
A success!
I shall make you stifcut if you like.

mig bardsley said...

We use lucozade sport drink mix in huge quantities to avoid cramp in overheated thatchers :) very good stuff.

That's three jobs well done isn't it?

I used to watch Giant Haystacks and Big Daddy on TV with my Dad. I was very very young of course :)

Dave said...

I shall start digging my new garden very slowly.

Inwardly Confused said...

I also watched the wrestling on a Saturday afternoon, white bread thick with buttter and chips from the chip van that came round the village, lovely.

snailbeachshepherdess said...

Music hall - Shrewsbury...friend says to me ..'Come with me to the Wrestling' ...I declined being a 'nice' girl...but went on the proviso that I WOULD NOT shout, scream, wave my handbag etc ...I was worse than any of them ...a real 'grab a granny' on the front row!
This evening I have been to see pigs ...Brenda and Susan ...they are six years old and started out for 'trainee' pig happened...they are now HUGE pets, in their own wood where they fell trees regularly ..I was scared!

Daphne said...

Enjoyed your post as always but feel I should just point out that your new beach picture at the top is cruelty itself to someone who loves beaches but lives in Leeds.

Malc said...


Soreness has extended into the fifth day - I think I may have damaged my elbow "delivering" Splodge the piglet. He put up one helluva fight - I'm quite proud of the lad.


Bless you for saying that, but the truth is I'll never be the real thing. I honestly believe it's something that needs at least two generations.
What's a stifcut?


I used to mix my own mineral/energy drink when I was a slightly boring swimmer.


Slowly is the best way - you get all the nasty weeds out.


Real chip butties!!!! Oh yeah!!!


Always had you down as a grapple fan. I remember the last few wrestling shows at the Music Hall. Seem to remember Jim Breaks and Kendo Nagasaki on the bill.


Well, it's easy. Train Leeds to Edinburgh, plane to Kirkwall, ferry to Westray and you're in (a bit windy) paradise

ziggi said...

a stifcut is what you get when you're good at something or you've achieved something. They're very popular here at Primary School and we're good at them - unlike spelling which we're not good at.

Anonymous said...

shit, I am both non-brit and under 40. woah, i have been away too finally ate the boys????

Malc said...


Aha! Im no gud as speling eeever.


Sadly, yes. The chaps made the ultimate sacrifice and now form a wall of pork in our freezer.

For info: World of Sport was ITV's Saturday afternoon sports programme - in direct competition with the more serious Grandstand on BBC. Highlight of WoS was "professional" "wrestling" from some godforsaken outpost of Her Maj's realm, generally featuring middle-aged lardarses jumping on each other and getting hit over the head by the handbags of outraged grannies. The commentator (whose name escapes me) always kicked off with "good afternoon grapple fans".

susi said...

The wrestling commentator was Kent Walton - I didn't know this, I looked it up. Apparently he also made pornographic films - no wonder my mother wouldn't let me watch the wrestling.

fiwa said...

When there is concrete to be mixed, that's where stepson Pat can save the day!

I, like the view said...

I remember the wrestling, which is odd because we weren't allowed to watch ITV

presumably you are getting fitter, little by little. . .


bet it beats wrestling with a jam in a photocopier, no matter how much it hurts

hope so!


(gentle ones)