Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pink Pig Story

Fresh snow on the ground and a sunny day, warm enough to get the runoff from the roof hitting the deck and splashing you when you open the door. Time to get the cross country skis out. We convince the two girls with some effort to come along with us to Carter Hill Orchards. Michael is tired from a night of snowboarding with his pals and a day at work yesterday at the Tilton Farmer's Market, so he stays home. And he misses all the fun. We are driving the back road where Pine Hill Road loops one way to French's Farm and the other way down into Contoocook. We come around the bend and slow at the sight of a truck stopped in the middle of the road, two men standing at both ends of the truck, and a large pink pig with big ears wandering the road and circling. We pull around the loop and Susan says, stop and help them. Be a good neighbor.
So I get out and the two guys are from Hillsboro, dressed in old jeans and flannel shirts and road crew jackets and knit caps. One is about six five and the other is about my height. The tall guy is the owner of the pig. I can't believe this is happening to me, he is saying. By gosh something like this has never happened to me. That pig just jumped clear out of the back of the trailah. I never would have believed it.
I don't know whetheh I'd believe it if you'd a told me, says his friend.
They are waiting for a friend, Gamiel who is bringing a rope with him. The pig is very tame, is hanging around the truck. A lady runs by, a jogger, she shoos the pig as she runs by. Then Gamiel comes up behind us in another truck. He is French or Italian or possibly Arab, with a coil of greasy, knotted rope he is trying to untangle as he walks over. The men are overjoyed. Charlie, here take the rope says Gamiel, unknotting several feet of it and throwing it at the tall man. The two friends begin to stalk the pig. We'll tie 'is legs if we haffta, Charlie. Know what I mean? says the short man. Charlie aproaches the pig slowly and lifts a coil of rope and tosses it hesitantly. The pig catches it on her snout and decides it is not right for her and snuffs it off. Just throw it Charlie, says Gamiel. She wants to be caught. You haffta not be so nice.
I don't know if I like this, says Charlie. I'm not liking this one little bit. Then he tries again and this time he's got her head in the loop. The pig gives a mighty grunt and then she is tackled by Charlie into the snowbank. She is screaming bloody murder. At this point I go around the truck. The pig is back up and the two men are trying to restrain her with the rope by choking her. You'll kill her that way, I say. I grab the pig by the two front legs and lift. Charlie gets the idea and lifts the two back legs and she flips onto her back and we carry her around the truck down to the back of the trailer. Charlie loses his grip and I pat the pig's neck and loosen the rope from around her bruised skin. We'll get you home, buddy, I say. She relaxes on her side in the snow as we wait for Gamiel and Charlie's friend to lower the trailer's gate. Then we lift her onto the gate and she slides in, grunting with delight to be back with the other pig, which is her sister. Let's go I say to Susan. Good luck guys.
You left the door open, say the girls. It was cold.
We're driving through Hopkinton to get to the orchard. I'm stinking the car up wth the smell of the pig on my sweat pants. When we get to the orchard I get out of the car, what a beautiful sight of the mountains. And the snow is perfect, not too wet. The skis glide in the tracks and the girls are not too bad for the first time out on the skis they got for Christmas.
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