Monday, March 30, 2009

Fairly Busy Weekend

Resting at the fair after a busy morning.

Parents and kids swarm in to set up watering pipes and feed their pigs.

Junior filling a watering pipe. It's a section of pvc pipe with a 90 degree angle at the bottom and a watering nipple installed. These are strapped to the pens and kept full of clean water for the piggles.

It was a bit hectic around here this weekend ...

Saturday morning, Junior and I were out before dawn, loading up the show pig for the Suwannee River Livestock Show and Fair. The loading went extremely smoothly since I had attached the pig transport contraption to the pig pen chute a week ahead of time and allowed her to wander to it for treats.

At loading time, a few well placed bananas was all it required to coax her into the trailer. Once she was loaded, she received a quick bath and then off we went to the always stressful weigh-in.

At the fair grounds, a long line of trucks and trailers bearing pigs stretched out of the grounds and onto the highway.

Apparently everybody else planned to get there early too.

It wasn't that bad however and before we knew it, the pigboys were offloading our pig into the chute that would channel her to the scales.

At that point, Junior got out of the JEEP, but I had to go find a parking place, so I did not get to see the weigh-in.

A few minutes later, as I parked the JEEP along the highway, a text message arrived, "250 pounds". That meant we had qualified to be in the fair, and one big chunk of stress slid off my plate with a loud "kerplunk".

We spent another hour at the fair waiting to be allowed in the row of pens where our pig was sharing a pen with good buddy Tyler's pig. Once all the pens were filled, the fair folks allowed us in so we could rig waterers and feed our charges.

At the same time all of this was going on, the rest of the PF family were driving down to New Port Richey for the Chasco Boat Parade, Festival, and Concert ... AND my wife's annual family reunion. We do this every year, only this year the festival and the fair coincided, plus Junior's first soccer game in over a year was scheduled for later that day.

Hence the familial division ... Junior and I stayed for pigs and soccer while the rest went to the reunion.

After an early lunch at BubbaQue's in Chiefland, Junior and I dashed home to play with Bear and clean up from pig handling.

Then it was off to Alachua for the soccer game. On the 40 minute drive to Alachua, the weather which had been pretty benign, began to ramp up. By the time we arrived at the soccer fields, the wind was blowing steady and extremely powerful gusts were turning the dirt parking area into a whirling sandstorm of dust, twigs, and oak leaves. No rain or ominous clouds, just roaring winds.

While waiting for the game to start, I received a phone call from Mrs. FC down at the reunion. Emma had gone out onto her uncle's dock to watch the boat parade and driven a huge splinter into her foot.

They were on the way to the emergency room. This apparently was no ordinary splinter. She was busy, so I didn't get many details at that moment.

Later I would learn that the splinter was a shard of wood several inches long that went in, out, and back in to her foot.

(She's supposed to take a picture of the wound and the 2 inch long HALF of the splinter that the doc let her keep.)

I'll blog that as soon as she gets it to me ... in the grand tradition of my cut off finger stitch pics from way back in this blog ... search if you dare newbies ... it's under "stupid things I have done".

So ... with my hurting Emma on my mind, I sat down on a bench to watch Junior play soccer in a gathering storm.
Our team was just barely big enough to play and the opposing team had about 20 players ... good players, so it did not look good.
For a while, it was 3-0 their favor, and then Junior scored and we rallied.
Then they scored.
Then Junior scored again ... 2- 4 now.
Then they scored.
Then Junior scored again ... 3- 5.
Then Junior executed a beautiful cross field pass and a teammate kicked it in ... 4-5 now.
Then they scored ... 4-6.
Dang it!
Then Junior scored again (got it on video ... later this week) and the score was 5-6.
Then the game ended.

We lost, but he was magnificent.

Later in the day, I called Emma to see how she was doing. She told me she was in the emergency room, with her foot numbed and the doctor was just about to cut out the shard.
She sounded pretty chipper for one who had just impaled her foot ... but I got off the phone quick as I did not want to hear my baby girl in pain ... just in case the numbnicity was not fully in place.

Much later in the day, she was sore, but managed to go (on crutches) to the festival concert with her girlfriends.
Then she and the girls went back to college ... so I haven't seen her or her injury. No hand holding or Dad hugs ... I've never had one get hurt at a distance before and frankly I do not like it one bit!
At least her Mom, sis, buddy Corinne, and kin were there ... added together, they almost equal a Dad hug.

Even later Saturday, after dark, the powerful thunderstorms that the high winds had hinted at arrived with heavy rains, limb snapping winds, and much lightning.

A fitting end to a full day.


threecollie said...

Oh, poor Emma! I hope she is feeling better....

h said...

That's a full day. Now I feel lazy.
All I did is attempt to play golf in the maelstrom. Hit a nine-iron 174 yards but other than that, not much fun. Then home to see the tiny tears in two screens that I'd ignored had become unpatchably large. Then an evening spent re-screening windows. Sigh.

Sayre said...

Ow ow ow!!! My foot hurts just reading about that!!! At least it didn't slow her down much.

You got our storms (which arrived just after the parade!) and they were quite impressive at times. Just like our parade, Junior squeezed in his great soccer game just before it arrived!

Paintsmh said...

Poor Emma! That sounds so painful!

Glad the pig qualified. That is always good.

Aunty Belle said...

Chile' youse had a full full weekend.

Never like babies bein' hurt when Daddy Bear ain't around--hope E's heel heals quickly.

Love readin yore comin's and goin's nad doin's...but does ya ever sit still and jes' be?

robin andrea said...

Hope Emma's foot is all okay now. I had a similar experience once with a broken sewing needle. Only time in my life I've ever had stitches. Keep us posted.

roger said...

ouch, ouch, ouch. it does sound as tho she recovered nicely.

good work on the pig.

Cathy S. said...

Poor Emma, poor pig, poor dad. Wonderful Jr.

We spent a long stormy night prying, big scarey Dobermans from out in back of the toilet where they took refuge from the lightening. Finally, I closed the bathroom door in fear that they would pry the toilet off its seal. Then, they paced and panted in our faces all night long. We were glad for the storm to pass, but grateful for the rain it brought.

Sandcastle Momma said...

That was quite a weekend you had! I hope Emma's foot is feeling better. Congrats to Junior on the soccer game - sounds like he's a very impressive player - can't wait to see the video.
Those storms settled in over us and stayed for 2 days - lots of flooding around these parts. Would have been great if it weren't spring break - nothing like kids ready to go to the beach but getting trapped in the house instead LOL

kathy a. said...

what a weekend! go, junior!

just reading about emma's injury makes me cringe. it must have been excrutiating, not being able to see her.

SophieMae said...

DAWG! I'm wondering if reading your blog is accentuating the increasing rapidity of annualocity. I just blinked and POUFE! another pig, another Chasco...

Bless poor Emma's just barely 20-fied li'l heart! (belated HAPPY, BTW!) Praying she'll have a speedy, painless recovery.

WTG, Junior! Good on ya all 'round. Soccer- and swine-wise. Some pig!

cinbad122 said...

No wonder she said her foot hurt her! I hope the pig wins something...I will be missing all of the fair this year. Der said that they had to cancel the race in G'ville due to the wind!!! I will be bringing in some pics tomorrow and I have more to develop...made mom go back with the good stuff. Saw mama sitting in a tree!

Anonymous said...

Busy weekend!!

Congrats to Junior for his outstanding plays!!

Hope Emma heals quickly and painfree!

What would have happened to Porki if she didn't make the weight? Bring her home and sell her later?

Looks like I'll have to take some time to read all the "stupid things I have done posts!!!! Did they sew back the whole finger??

Any more swims with baitfish??!!

Have a great week!


Unknown said...

Hi Papa! My foots doing a little better today its still tough getting around. Mostly I'm just frustrated lol. Mausy says I should ask you about the time you injured your big toe.

Unknown said...

p.s. I love you!

Dani said...

Poor Emma! Hope that foot heals up fast.

R.Powers said...

Thanks for all the good Emma wishes and prayers. Very appreciated.

Sounds like she's still pretty sore.

I don't know much about golf, but that sounds like a heck of a shot!
Sorry about the screening.

It hurts me too. Just a small splinter really smarts, so I can imagine how this one felt.

So far we have always qualified ... one more pig to go next year.

Glad you enjoy this stuff and also glad you are back home.
Do I ever jes be? Not much ... how do you think I keep this girlish figure?
When I'm out there alone with my camera in the wilds ... that's when I am just bein'.

The idea of a broken needle in my flesh just gives me the willies.

she's a tough one to be so damn pretty.

Cathy S,
Laughing because our huge Bear is frightened of a dog gate we use to keep him out of various rooms. It fell over when he was a pup and scared him. He won't go near it.

I watched the news and thought you were getting whacked this weekend. Too bad about spring break!

Kathy A,
Definitely excruciating.

THAT is the way I feel about blogging. It seems to speed up time.

Can't wait to see your pics! Your 15 minutes of fame awaits :)

I try and avoid being mistaken for bait most of the time.
If the pig doesn't make it, a livestock buyer is there to buy it at market prices, which is a lot less than the inflated auction prices the kids get as donations.

If she means the bumble bee sting when I was a kid, my uncle put a great mucousy gob of chewing tobacco spit on it.
I prefer the sting.
Love you and hope it is bearable today!

Me too! Lucky her, her roomie is a nursing student!

Caroline said...

In Charlotte's words "brilliant" or maybe "radiant" for Porki?

Hate those "we're headed for the emergency room with (insert name of child here). Hope Emma's mends soon, even a small splinter is a pain!

Caroline in "3rd snow day off, 2nd blizzard in a week" South Dakota

Lynn said...

Poor thing!!! That's a BIG splinter!
So when do you hear how the pig did ?
And I went to look for the pictures of your (almost) severed finger. I saw the story but not pics. DId you remove them??

Pablo said...

Wonderful post. I missed you through the weekend, but I can see you were being the best dad in the state.

Unknown said...

That splinter story gives me the eebie jeebies (whatever they are ...). Good decision to hit the Big H on that one!

Freste said...

There surely isn't a thing anyone can do to keep their skin from crawling after hearing about the unintentional dock planing utensil.
Here's to a speedy, uneventful recovery and a comfy pair of Keds in the future.
Congrats to JR on running the whole game. NICE!

Nancy Ortiz said...

Some pig! Some kid! Some Dad and baby girl! Hope the wind didn't do any real damage. Had some straight line high winds here that kinda tore stuff up down US319 south of Thomasville. Nobody hurt though. TTFN.

Ericka said...

NOTHING beats a dad hug. my dad always used to dig splinters out of me. it hurt. i'm sorry about her foot - did she get a tetnus shot?

congrats to junior and his mad soccer skills, and to the pig for, um, her mad weight skills.

R.Powers said...

We hardly ever get snow days here.
Enjoy yours!
I guess enjoy may be the wrong word.

Here's the link:

It pained me to not post, but I just could not squeeze it in!

Makes me hurt too.

I remember Keds.

Mostly the wind did dead limb pruning ... so lots of pickup.

She's up to date on all shots.
It WAS quite a weekend. Thanks