Christopher Hogwood

Christopher Hogwood

I just finished reading The Good Good Pig: The Extraordinary Life of Christopher Hogwood by Sy Montgomery.  Christopher had been a runt marked for death who ended up leading a charmed and long life, tipping the scales at something north of 700 lbs and achieving fame on television and in print.  Everyone loved Christopher; he was the epitome of a comfort animal (but not one to bring on a plane).  Friends, neighbors and members of the community would save their leftovers and culinary mistakes for Christopher’s slop bucket.  They would come to rub his expansive belly.  The town’s police officer would keep an apple or two in his cruiser in case he had to lead Christopher home after one of his frequent wanderings about town.  Sy Montgomery told of spending enormous amounts of time caring for Christopher not, necessarily, because she had to but because she wanted to.

I was thinking of this yesterday when I spent an hour fencing in 8000 sq ft of old pasture that had been left unrooted last summer. My pigs looked on the verge of boredom, and six bored pigs will find a way to amuse themselves that usually involves destroying something in need of preservation .  And I wanted to please them.  After four months of frozen, un-rootable ground, I knew they were ready to get their noses muddy.  Watching them tearing up sod in search of something tasty to snack on gave me a feeling of satisfaction, a small sense of accomplishment from a simple, easy task.  It’s as though I’m always asking and answering the same question: What can I do for my pigs today?

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