Neighborhood Happenings

Ben and I just walked back from the squatter area behind our house. We were drawn there by all the commotion ... pigs make a lot of noise when they are being killed.

We found out that it was one 4 year old boy's birthday today and the pig was being slaughtered for the celebration. Ben and I got there just as it was dying and I asked, "Motanaw mi?" which means "Can we watch?".

They were bleeding it at the neck. It was "hog tied" and held down by several strong men because it was probably a 100 to 120 pound hog. It was dead a few minutes after we got there. They had a fire made of some scrap wood and an old tire rim (as a stand) a few feet away where they were going to cook it. They had two pans of water boiling at the time.

After the pig was dead one of the men took some blood and with his finger made the sign of the cross on the birthday boy's forehead. All the children congratulated the little boy. I haven't found out what that means specifically yet though.

We left shortly after that. Sorry, no pictures today.

The little squatter area behind our house is home to about 50 people who use wood or sawdust to cook with, live in houses constructed out of spare plywood, boards, tin, canvas, or whatever and which vary in dimensions from the size of a walk-in closet to a bedroom in the states. Some are built on stilts and some have a second story.