Saturday, December 21, 2013

These Little Piggies

Previously, I've written with some fondness for the pigs who live on the other side of my bedroom wall.  On Tuesday morning, two of these pork-loined friends became part of a Hungarian tradition: an annual pig slaughter. 
Why we did this on a Tuesday I don't know.  But I stayed home from the Children's House, my host brother didn't go to school, and my host dad had the day off of work.  This was an all day job.
Our work started at 7:30 in the pig pen.  When the animal started screaming, the estranged brother of the host dad from across the street came running to help; foe became friend and it was a full family affair.
I'll spare you most of the details from that point.  I'm expecting a good spike in blog traffic since I'm sure some groups are trolling the internet for phrases like "pig slaughter".  But really, the process was fascinating and every last piece of the pig was used in some way.  Everyone had a job to do which they pursued with haste and precision.
They say that the two things you never want to see made are laws and sausage.  At this point, I'm not sure I have a problem with either.  I'm not sure what that says about me.
For now, I'll let the pictures do the talking about my first Hungarian pig kill.

 After the pig is dead, the first job is to burn off the hair and prepare the skin.



Sunday, December 8, 2013

Thanksgiving Retreat Pictures

Here's a glimpse of our Thanksgiving and pre-Advent retreat in Bratislava.  It was a great 6 days to take a break from Hungarian, enjoy good food and friends, and recharge before coming back home to Gorogszallas.  And let me say, it did feel good to come home!

 Chelsea and Miriam making pumpkin pies with real pumpkin! (and supplemented by precious cans of pumpkin mailed to Slovakia from the US)

Ursula and me (and our matching coats) at the Bratislava Christmas/Advent Market

YAGM Hungary in the main square of Bratislava's Old Town

American Thanksgiving Dinner with fellow ELCA volunteers from Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia