We looked at articles on the internet. We looked at how-to videos on You Tube. We listened to Garrison Keiller talk about the last hog killing in Lake Wobegon. We tried to give each other pep talks and try to remember all the steps Daddy so thoroughly showed us over Thanksgiving. I tried to recall every thing I watched during all those years of my childhood, being sidekick and helper in the butcher shop.
Well, we did it. Our doctor friend and eight miles down the road neighbor came over to help. We figured that with all his expertise in anatomy he would be of great assistance. He was! He pulled the trigger that ended the life of the pig. It was quick and humane. We were sad. Grateful to God for giving us good things to eat. Aware that there are costs involved. Then quickly moved beyond sad to skinning and eviscerating. What a lot of work for people who don't really know what they are doing! The two to three hour job took close to four. I can see how the big hog slaughter of days gone by was such a community/family event. We learned some specific questions to ask my dad before we do this the next time. We learned we don't want to do this job every month, so glad it is a seasonal cold weather event. We learned that there is a lot of work involved in real food and are glad that our children are getting the opportunity to learn that lesson, too.
Yesterday I boned out the meat, cut up pork chops, wrapped up ribs and decided to make sausage on Monday. What a lovely amount of meat. Breakfast should be covered for awhile. But since we know it won't last forever, BBQ, our new little piggy, is busy foraging and eating, and otherwise pretending she is a cow. We call her Barbie. We are grateful for all our animals fulfilling their purpose in life. Grateful to know our meat was grown in a clean, healthy, humane environment. Fed healthy foods, instead of medicated "ration". Glad to know that hard work is good. But gotta figure out a way to get Daddy to come and apprentice me in the process a few times. Beeves should be ready for butchering come next winter.....Wonder what it would take to entice him to show us how to cut up a whole steer!