This Little Piggy went to Market…

Some people are suckers for homeless dogs and cats, me it's pigs!

Some people are suckers for homeless dogs and cats, me it's pigs!

I went to the local flea market on Sunday; I needed to buy some
English books and Broadbean seeds. However, I was immediately
distracted from my “mission” by a couple of piglets which an old Portuguese farmer was trying to sell. They do not normally sell livestock at this market so I was really surprised. Intrigued, I wandered over to investigate.

Some people are suckers for homeless dogs and cats, me it’s pigs – hence my name “Piglet”.

They were so cute! One piglet was a bit on the grumpy side and turned its back on me but the other was absolutely adorable. It was love at first sight! Black in colour with a cute little scrunched up face and sad eyes it stood about 12 inches high. It made me smile because despite shaking from snout to trotter with fear it still rooted around the bottom of the cage looking for food. Have you ever stood in front of a caged animal, looked into its eyes and just for a moment you connect?

At this point I was having a mental argument, my mind in torment. Two voices debating within me – Heart versus Common sense.

Heart “It’s so cute I want to take it home”
Common sense “Where on earth are you going to keep it?”
Heart “In my new raised vegetable garden”
Common sense “What do piglets eat”
Heart “If it’s like me usually anything, hmmm disclaimer on chickens’ feet, snails and unmentionables”
Common sense “Who’d feed it when you’re on holiday?”
Heart “Oh dear, my friends aren’t into farm animals”
Commons sense “How big will it grow?”
Heart (now beginning to see common sense) “Ponderous, because if it’s not a Vietnamese Pot bellied Pig – probably HUGE!”
Common sense…silence, let the implications of last sentence sink in.
Heart “Oh, but it’s so cute I can’t possibly leave it here. It may end up served as a Leitaõ (Suckling Pig) roast dinner”

As more people gathered round and children began to poke it through the bars of the cage the poor little piggy was terrified and began to tremble visibly. I tried to make soothing pig-like noises. It looked at me with pleading little eyes and was probably telling me to stop snuffling as I was the one drawing the crowd, not him.

Negotiations for “Grumpy” piglet were now underway with a stocky, roughly dressed Portuguese man. He was fiercely negotiating a keen price and delivery with the seller. After much arm waving and shoulder shrugging an agreement was finally reached, a deal struck and then sealed with a vigorous handshake. I desperately hoped it was not going to end up as Leitaõ (Suckling Pig) for next Sunday’s lunch.

The fate of this little piggy was in my hands. I had to make a decision!

What would you have done?

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38 responses to “This Little Piggy went to Market…

  1. I would have agonised but common sense would probably have won. I have too much of it!

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  2. I’m such a sucker…I would have tried to take it home! Repeat after me Pip, “I will NOT make eye contact with animals!”

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  3. If I could rescue all the animals from laboratories, factory farms, and uncaring families, I would.

    I can’t. But I can save some of them.

    I expect that you made a better deal and took both piglets home with you. At least in the world of your loving imagination. 🙂

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  4. Common sense vs. the heart is a tricky one and I don’t envy you one bit! In your circumstances I would have been very torn to buy or not to buy the little piglet – however, my down to earth and practical nature would probably have won.

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  5. I really enjoyed this post. Well written, and full of suspense. And you ended with a cliff-hanger! Oh, dear. Truth is, I am in love with goats, not so much with pigs. So, if it had been a baby goat, I would have been a goner. I would have taken it home and scrambled around making a good fence and home for it. What did you do?

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  6. Fun story! Toughy decision, but my guess is that you do NOT have a new little piggy at your place… (did I guess right?).

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  7. Mmmm, roast pork and apple sauce… Sorry PiP, I like my roast dinners. Your posts make me laugh because you bring to mind Johnny Morris, the guy who had that UK programme Animal Magic? First you’re doing chicken impressions and now pig ones and talking to the animals. Classic!
    On a serious note, I could never eat something I’ve just been petting, I dunno what I’d do in your shoes. How about this, a neighbour of mine actually brought her chickens in during the winter because it was too cold for them and apparently they slept with her and her husband in the basement. Now that’s weird!
    Hope you’ll still speak to me now 😦

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    • Hey Marcia,
      One of my favourite Sunday roasts is Pork and apple sauce. I don’t normally connect pork to Pig as it’s in bits when I buy it. Yep, strange but true. If I thought about it too much could def be veggie…
      I use to love watching Jonny Morris on TV – never thought of myself following in his footsteps. They don’t make TV programmes like that now 😦
      Your chicken story made me smile! 🙂 It is weird people taking chickens to bed with them – they poop everywhere!
      I would love to keep chickens but it would be impractical.

      Like

  8. Awww…great story, my oldest son won’t eat ANYTHING pork, because he loves pigs so much, he is determined to have one as a pet one day…you would like each other 🙂

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    • It would be great to have a Vietnames Potbellied Pig as a pet. (sound like I am descrbinb myself there for a mo) but the free range pigs I went to see yesterday were huge! More farm than garden! Think the one above was a farm pig. 😦

      Like

  9. Piglet… If you didn’t take that piggy home with you, I will have to unsubscribe from your blog…

    I once was a PA for a woman that wanted a lamb. She found one and I had to raise it. It went everywhere with me, just like Mary, except I had a car and would pile the lamb into my back seat. It would then pee everywhere.

    But it was cute. It slept in my bed with me and hung out on the couch. Until she got bigger. After summer leave, I returned to find the sheep had been thrown out and she had gone wild already and had no idea who I was.

    So, what happened with the pig?

    Like

    • Hi
      Sad story re the lamb…remind me whose lamb was it? 🙂 No I decided not to take the piglet home as I did not know which breed it was. Plus, I would have had the problem of rehoming it as we did not have anywhere to keep it 😦

      Like

  10. He is cute but common sense would have won out. It was noble of you to want to save him from a fate unknown but I’m sure Mr. P. was happy with your decision. 🙂

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  11. I was going to ask what you have called him but I see you were sensible!!!

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  12. That connection you felt with the Piggy speaks highly of your compassionate and tender heart. I admire you and understand about good sense winning out. Great post. I enjoyed it very much. 🙂

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  13. Oh, my. What a quandary. I can relate to having those sorts of internal monologues. Usually though the “wrong” side wins and I am stuck with the consequences of that “win.”

    Thanks for describing an interesting incident from your life. I look at my life and see it as the same old same old. No Piggys in my market that’s for sure.

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  14. That’s a tough one Piglet. I know that Pigs are very intelligent animals. So are squid and many others that we use for food. When it’s all behind the scenes it’s easy to enjoy our ham sandwich. But if you have to look it in the eye, that’s a whole other story.

    Not sure what I would have done. A pig as a pet is not too workable either.

    So what did you do?

    – Papa Joe

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  15. Ah, Piglet. I’m a veggie (in Alaska, yet) and you’ve written a forlorn tale. Although not as pink and endearing as your avatar, this poor thing deserved a free-range fate. But I understand you don’t have a free-range yard…

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  16. Pingback: or not – Random Acts of Kindness Week « Things in life I find annoying

  17. I probably would have left with another pet and had some serious explaining to do. I am trying to make that practical sense step up a little louder these days!
    Debbie

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  18. Hi,
    I’m here by way of Eliz’ Valentine’s Day Mega Blog Hop…and I’m so glad I stopped by.
    Your post was so well done…and bittersweet…I could see the entire scene right in front of me!
    I’ll be following your blog to enjoy your other tales. 🙂

    Like

    • Hi Vivian,

      Great you stopped by – thank you!

      The Blog hop is such a good idea – and now you have ended up in Portugal!
      I try to keep my posts light hearted and on the whole short in order to give everyone time to join me in some friendly banter.

      Kind regards,

      PiP

      Like

  19. outrageous – i don’t know and would know even less, faced with that choice. i would weigh up the practical factors and if not possible, tear myself away with some serious sadness .. cheers

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  20. Bought him! Gosh, I can’t bare moments like that, so I try to avoid them…Breaks my heart.

    I appreciate your comment and visit to my blog by the way. You have a really nice blog here! 🙂

    Like

  21. Hi Piglet,
    Finally making the rounds…
    You did the right thing I hope… Would you have been able to provide lots of room and space outside for him to play? If no, then his fate was sealed before you arrived… poor piggy. 🙂
    Thanks for your contribution to the bloghop! 😉
    Elizabeth

    Like

  22. I’m a sucker, and since I LOVE pigs it would be coming home with me. Then I would tell my husband he has to build a pig house for sweet Bubbalean

    Like

  23. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: One | Piglet in Portugal

  24. Pingback: RANDOM NOMAD: Piglet in Portugal, Award-Winning Expat Blogger « The Displaced Nation

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