Victor studied the three pigs in the pen and pointed out that the one we had chosen probably weighed over 300 pounds, much too big for a “roaster.” He pointed to a different animal and said, “That one would be a better size.” I got the buyer's OK, and the smaller pig was dispatched.
Carole Soule's blog
Cooper, his front feet planted squarely in the water-trough, ignored my curses as he chewed his cud and swished his tail. The recent heat wave has been more challenging to my cattle and pigs than the most bitterly-cold winter weather. Most of the Highland cattle who did not shed their winter coats naturally were mechanically clipped. Even without extra hair, they still suffer in the heat. Cooper decided the trough was his personal foot bath.
The pond is still, and the saw is silent – just as it would have been in the 1800s when the pond was too low to power the mill. Brian, our guide, points to a rock high on the shore that marked the water level needed to power the old sawmill. The pond's surface is at least 5 feet below that rock, so the mill sits quietly, waiting for rain.
Hair fell in piles as I pushed the clippers through Stash's matted hair. Stash, one of my working oxen, was long overdue for a haircut. Scottish Highlanders are cattle that grow long, shaggy coats; great for protection from the cold, but brutal in the summer heat. Some of my cattle shed their hair naturally - most don’t. So, starting in early May, we pull out the clippers and cut off their coats. We clip the cows first, then the yearlings and lastly, the older oxen.
We surged down the gravel lane from the farm, wind rushing over my cap, in an automobile that had neither gas pedal nor gear shift. I could feel each bump as we swerved to miss potholes in a green & black 1921 Model T Touring car driven by Brad Marble.