Today’s post comes from Cynthia in Mahtowa
Once upon a time I had four pigs. They were wee things when they arrived, several hundred pounds when they left. I think I called all four of them “Peter Porkchop” to remind me why I was feeding them, Danish style, barley and milk. But while they lived on the farm, they were a delight and constant source of entertainment.
They shared the pasture with the several goats. The pasture, fenced with woven wire, did a good job of keeping them contained. But sometimes the gate between the horses and goats was left open and they were free to range into the (non)electric fenced area. So they took themselves for walks around the neighborhood. My neighbor, sitting on the ground, painting her garage doors, was startled to find the four at that time very large pigs staring at her.
The first time I took the new piglets for a walk in the woods with the goats, I learned that they would not stay with me and the goats, but instead wandered off on their own. And they did not return with us. A friend stopped by to see them that afternoon. When I told her I didn’t know where they were, she was astounded and wondered why I wasn’t out looking for them. I allowed as how there was 40 acres of woods and where would I start? “I figure they’ll come home at feeding time.” And so they did. Around 4:30 that afternoon here they came romping across the horse pasture. So I learned they always would return home.
But my favorite story about the four little now big pigs is this: They loved being in the goat barn, but as they got bigger there wasn’t room for them and the goats, so I would lock them out at night to sleep in their own shelter. When I opened the goat door in the morning, the pigs would rush in, grab mouthfuls of hay and race over to their shelter. Then I noticed they would run down to the woods and bring back sticks in their mouths. It made me think of the folk tale “The Three Little Pigs” and the houses they built. So…straw, twigs…my pigs were “building” two out of the three houses. Then one day I noticed one of them running around with a salt block in his mouth….ah, the house of bricks was now being built!
And I was the big bad wolf who had them for dinner….
And painted a portrait…which I sold to a woman in New York City where I hope Peter Porkchop lives on.
What folk tale have you seen play out in your life?