Land Poor

Life on 80 Acres

Land Poor

Land Poor
A small crossroads, Ontario, Canada
December 31
I live in a (dilapidated, leaky, infested) trailer with no electricity, no plumbing and no permit, parked on the 80 acres of land DH and I purchased last summer. We are trying to start a farm from the ground up, with very little money. This blog is about the trials, tribulations and joys we encounter in our everyday lives.


Land Poor's Links
AUGUST 9, 2011 9:37AM

Thank God for friends; or, The day our pigs ran off

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pigs in water


  We keep our older pigs inside a portable electrical fence. Smart animals that they are, they quickly established that the orange netting was their boundary. Whenever we bring food or water the pigs come stampeding over to the fence but are sure to stay about one micrometer away. We thought they were trained.

The energizer that supplies power to the fence costs a few hundred dollars, so, instead of buying a second one when we needed it, we just took off the one from the pigs' enclosure, thinking they would be fooled. Ha.

Last week I was away from home, writing exams that will (if I passed) entitle me to practice as a naturopathic doctor. DH was holding down the fort alone, as he did before we were married. (Aside: he observed that he can do the morning chores, make breakfast and get out of the house faster when he does everything himself than when I make breakfast. He says the the idea is that I am supposed to make breakfast while he is doing the chores, not hop out of bed when I hear his boot-steps approaching the trailer.) This past Saturday he went to the Dump Run Special at our local community centre, which is a fund-raising breakfast, so-called because the dump is open on Saturdays. There he met up with a friend from work and that friend's two friends.

Driving down the our lane upon his return, he noticed that the pigs were not in their pen. From my perspective, I received a text stating, “Emergency. The pigs escaped and I can't find them.” 80 acres is a lot of territory to cover. Looking for animals that don't want to be found is a disheartening task. DH drove his 20+ year old truck where possible and ran around where driving is not possible. The three friends, despite being inappropriately attired for the task, set out on foot. Where DH was frantic, they approached the ordeal with a spirit of fun.

The search eventually paid off when the three friends found the pigs in the stand of trees between one of our fields and the road. They were none-the-worse for their adventure, but clearly not ready to give up their new-found freedom. DH tried throwing them in the back of the pick-up to take them back to the pen, but they kept jumping out. God, I wish I had been there to see pigs jumping out of the back of a truck. What eventually lured them back was DH teasing them with a water bottle, like a carrot on a stick.

For days afterwards the poor captives stared at the spot on the fence where they had escaped. I like to think that our pigs have it pretty good- grass, mud, mash, all in abundance- but the truth is a pig will always choose the forest over the field.

The moral of the story is that, when you have people around you things are usually less bad. Had DH been alone, he might never have recovered the pigs and he most certainly would have been in a greater panic. The second moral of the story is, if you don't want to be put to work, don't visit us.

Thank you to DH's work friend and his two friends! Come back soon!



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I just read you and giggled/smiled.
I promised I'd not turn on a gadget.
You provoke a healthy jealousy, ah!

You'll never resent this Land Poor.
Hang in there. Youth will appreciate.
Your peers will envy your heathy way.
The Spirit within will manifest glory.
I have seen 'Shikara' as in "warrior."
Irony - the peaceful and full of grace.
Sure the sweating and doubts emerge.
Your story sets mu good madness free.
The world needs the good mad woman.
I have witnesses the mal-lady. That's sad.
No seek or hunt out imitation "jewelry"`
trinkets, vain articles of phony/vanity
That leaves one without inner wealth.

The irony is - at the peak of anger sense
joy/calm -if one aspires there's reward.
It's sensed. It's experienced. No words.

Whether you agree with my conviction?
I am nor always discordant and abnormal.
I al speaking from my heart. Insane blame.
Crazy people will project and loath beauty.
You will be stable as others become frail.
Stature. Character. Sterling radiance too.

I am just popping off a thought or two.
I hope this comment doesn't get stuck.
I am saying `the feeling inside can trick.
The transformation is a alchemy richness.
I better get back and hoe, rake, and swear.