Most days I feel we should have a camera crew documenting our farming adventures. There is always a rodeo, a run away, someone gets stuck, something breaks down or critters escape. On the best of days we may be combining all of the above options into something that resembles a chaotic choreographed ballet.
For a couple years we have been talking about moving a water hydrant that is in a really awkward spot by our tarp barn and about 80 feet away from the pig pen. This fall we finally stopped just talking about it and put a plan in motion. The last couple days my father in law has been digging a new trench using our bobcat and tonight was ready to actually lay the new line and do some plumbing.
I showed up after nap time to see how they were making out and found my husband 12 feet in the ground cursing about how he would never want to be a plumber. I wandered away to feed the pigs and returned when the sun was starting to go down to lend a hand.
We got the new line laid in and the hydrant reattached. Now the metal pipe that makes up the hydrant is a specific length so that in the winter the water can drain out and keep it from freezing. Well the end of the tench behind the pig pen was not 10 feet deep so we discovered the hydrant will now be 6 feet above ground. Okay we can cope with this we will just need to build some steps.
Next we work on re connecting the water for the pigs and since I’m the tallest I’m the one attaching the hose to the hydrant and turning it on, I should also mention it’s completely dark by this point. Well it’s cold so the hose is frozen. At this point I hear something and look down to see a pig had managed to get under the fence into the trench. Get the hose off so my father in law can work on thawing it out and my husband gets into the trench to grab the pig and passes him out to me. I return him to his friends and go to reattach their water hose which is now ice free. I took my jacket off before grabbing the pig so I didn’t end up with it covered in mud and my jacket is still off. Get the hose on and turn the hydrant on, well now the hose has a huge split in it and I’m pretty much in a freezing cold shower in a thin hoodie in subzero temperatures. I’ve got my glasses on and their covered in water so I’m fumbling around blind with a hammer trying to hook the hammer on the hydrant to turn it off while getting soaked.
We get the water turned off and go to work putting flax straw into the trench to act as insulation and making a new hose as the pigs still need water, by this point we are using the bobcats lights and cell phone flashlights to see. New hose made and connected my father in law demonstrates to the pigs that it’s working again and they start fighting over the water. Remember how the one pig got into the trench?! Well now they are all jostling around the same area and in danger of also sliding under the fence and ending up in the trench we should have filled with dirt before turning their water on. My father in law is yelling, my husband is running to the bobcat to start filling the trench with dirt and I am running for the pig pen as fast as I can to get myself between the 22 pigs in danger of ending up in the trench 🙄
Ten minutes later we are all back in the farm house wet, muddy and ready for supper!