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I Take The Family Pig For a Swim

Ok, so you will not believe what I just did-I took the family pig for a swim in the river.

For those of you who know anything about pigs, you know this is alot harder than it sounds. For those of you who know nothing about pigs, my advice is don´t attempt this alone!

The said pig, who has no name, as he is going to be eaten in several months at a birthday party, loves to go swimming. He actually has quite a nice life compared to other animals here. Many people here have pigs-and many of these pigs are skinny, sad, and closely tethered to trees.

My family´s pig on the other hand, is enormously fat, with a shiny black and pink coat. On hot afternoons, he grunts alot until Arturo takes him down to the river for a bath. On this particular afternoon, having never taken a pig for a bath, I decided to accompany Arturo and the pig down to the creek.

The first problem was getting the pig untied from the tree. This took four of us-the grandmother, Arturo, a visiting cousin, and myself. While being untied, the pig got very excited, and seemingly very hungry, and tried to eat my shoe. Did you know pigs have very sharp teeth? Well, they do.

Once the pig was untied, it took all four of us to hold onto the tether, so that he didn´t run away. He is very very strong, and we were all laughing-and occssionally he would trun around and make alot of noise and sort of charge at us. Once Arturo and I got a good grip on him and the tether, off we went towards the river. Or rather, off the pig went, and we ran behind him. Did you know pigs are amazing fast runners? Well, they are.

We ran along with the pig towards the river. In fact, the pig seemed to know exactly where he was going and what we wanted-water and mud. As we ran after the pig, we crossed thru the neighbors property-and when all the kids there saw us with the pig, they came along too. Pretty soon, we had about fifteen kids following us.

Here, people are not afraid to let tiny kids be around pigs-even little toodlers were running up the pig, and patting it´s rump, or helping us get it down the path. It was really strange, and I was worried the pig might get stressed out of something, but the pig took it all in stride. Whenever alittle kid got too close to the pig, everyone would start laughing, and the kids would all shriek, the pig would let out some loud grunts-but no one seemed particularly worried.

As soon as the pig saw the river, it ran faster and faster. Dare I say it, I do believe the pig was-graceful. Pigs are actually very graceful animals. The pig went so fast, he left me far behind , and only Arturo was hanging on for dear life.(Once a pig runs away, it is very very hard to catch again.)

When the pig entered the river, it´s expression was one of pure joy. It swam around in circles, and then made it´s way to what it really wanted-the giant puddle of mud nearby.
Sqealing and grunting, it rolled over and over again in the mud. In was practically doing swan dives into the mud.

The whole time this was going on, a crowd of choildren had gathered to watch the pigs antics. Arturo´s pig is the only pig in the neighborhood that gets such royal treatment- the other pigs have rather sad lives, I think. The children were all clamoring to get a closer look at the pig-some had climbed up into the nearby trees, some were wading out into the water. The little girls had on the typical dresses here, brightly colored dresses of poplin with zigzag designs; the little boys were only wearing underwear. Everytime the pig shook the mud and water off, everyone got covered in mud, and all the little kids shrieked in delight.

At this point we actually took the pig into the river itself-we went swimming with the pig in an area about 7 feet deep. If you have never been swimming with a pig, you should try it, because it is hilarious. Pigs are quite buoyant, and you can actually float along without much effort, and the pig will support you entirely, sort of like an innertube. The pig was so happy at this point, that it took no notice of us at all-it´s shoe and hand biting tendencies seemed to have disappeared.

Women here swim fully clothed-and I mean fully, down to the ankles, clothed. It was really hard for me to swim in all my clothes and not let my skirt pouf up around my neck-especially as I was also carrying my camera in one hand(live swimming pig shots, close up, are something not to be missed) and holding onto the somewhat slippery pigs rump with my other hand.

Suddenly, without warning, the pig decided it had had enough, and quickly charged out of the river and up the hill. Arturo and I were quite breathless, trying to keep up with him. The pig ran to his tree, and waited there to be tied up again. When we finally caught up to him, he looked at us as if to say, ¨Well-finally!¨

This has been my most memorable experience here so far.



3 responses to “I Take The Family Pig For a Swim”

  1. Barbara says:

    Did you ever think of writing a children’s book? This pig swimming story would make a great one.

  2. Sande says:

    This is a very funny story! A swimming pig. I wonder what you will do next Gigi 🙂 You are a great blog writer. Keep them coming. Love, Sande

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