Tuesday, 26 October 2010


Yesterday Dave was pierced by a bee stinger. This morning we pierced the pigs ears. Bad things come in threes. Who’s going to get pierced next? Maybe a nose ring for the puppy.

The bee sting was my fault. I lulled Dave into a false sense of security by telling him the bees were sleepy, but “accidentally” woke them up minutes before Dave approached the hive. Well they looked sleepy when I peered under the feeder, but maybe my shifting of the feeder sent the aroma of sweet sugar syrup dregs down into the hive. I’m all togged up in my beek suit, gloves and all, and Dave’s in jeans & jumper and gloveless. Off comes the hive roof. All’s well. Off comes the feeder. Yikes, angry bees! Whoopsy. I’ve never seen Dave move so fast in wellies. He has a lovely red swelling on the wrist to show for it. Meanwhile, back at bee central, small clusters of disturbed drowzy bees are clinging onto leaves of the sapling in front of the hive. They’re clearly not up to clearing the 5 inches between them and the hive entrance. I lend a helping hand by transporting them one by one by gloved finger from plant to door, but many are either too weak or too recalcitrant to get from plant to finger. It’s a lost cause. That’s a handful less bees for the winter cluster. Obviously this will prove a crucial mistake come March!

As for the pig piercings, the weather was, quite frankly, bloody miserable, perfect for a spot of trauma (ours) and blood (theirs) before breakfast. The mean looking piercing gadget was primed and ready.


The tub of disinfectant was on hand. The rain was coming in horizontally. Roused from slumber by the promise of a late breakfast, the girls stumbled out of the ark blissfully unaware of what was about to happen. Heads down in the trough, time for the dirty deed. Clunk! In it goes. Did Davina squeal? Did she even flinch? Nothing. No reaction. She just carried on eating. Not even the blood was a distraction. Unbelievable.


So with a distinct lack of any trauma whatsoever, the girls will for the remainder of their days - being precisely 21 hours and counting - be known as Pig Number 1 (Davina), Pig Number 2 (Ally), Pig Number 3 (Harriet) and Pig Number 4 (Alice).

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