“So … ready to take out those pigs?”
“we’re not looking for great, are we? aren’t we looking for problem solved?”
My Maui friend and I have been texting about our pig problem since at least September. By now I’ve inferred that he kind of adopted our problem. A few months ago he started texting about the possibility of his to-be-visiting friend hunting our pigs. Another person nearby had shared something similar (visiting hunter friend), too, so I have just taken it all as friendly banter. As his friend’s visit was getting closer, more details would come out — dates of his visit, dates when our in-laws were visiting, guns, bow & arrow, neighbors, hunting permit, a mobile meat processing outfit here, etc. The dates that worked for them was when my in-laws were still here. So many obstacles and loose ends; I still thought it’s just amusing chatty banter.
Mind you, all of these communications over months were via text. There’d be a flurry of texts, then nothing. There was still so much missing info and details — did his friend really want to do this? who is this friend? we don’t have a bow & arrow. what happens if a pig gets killed? does his friend know how to dress a pig? what do we do if a pig gets killed in the middle of the night?
When we had texted about them possibly coming, we offered to let them use our truck and stay with us. Then he was busy with his guest and we with ours. Then Wednesday, my friend texted that he booked flights arriving the next day, Thursday, at 1pm, they were doing a manta dive at 3pm, and leaving Saturday at 8am. They can rent a car, they don’t need to stay with us, and they don’t have to hunt pigs.
We let them do all three. Hubby drove the in-laws to the airport Thursday morning, with his bike in the truck bed. He parked the truck in long term parking with the key inside, went for a training ride (has to do a race soon that he signed up for in 2020) and rode home.
The guys were incommunicado that morning, because we later learned they were kayaking and whale watching in Maui starting at dawn. They later texted when they were flying out. They found our truck, did their dive, saw many mantas, and we saw them shortly before we went to bed. They even saw a pig on the road shortly before they got to our house. They came with new arrow tips in a package, but no bow or arrows. They had found a guy on Craigslist in Maui who was going to sell them the bow and arrows, so that had set everything in motion on their side the day before. They bought arrow tips, booked flights and the dive … and the Craigslist guy ghosted them.
The next morning, they rinsed off their diving equipment and hung it all to dry, then went to the store to get bait (corn on the cob and canned corn) for my neighbor cousins’ pig trap we weren’t yet sure we had permission to use. While they were gone, I received the OK, so when they returned, they looked at the trap for the first time and baited it.
They then drove off to Hilo to see Kaumana Caves, visit a relative in the Puna district, and see the volcano at night. Before they reached Volcano, they had found another guy selling a bow on Craigslist in the Puna district. They called him, he was there, and five minutes later they had a bow. At Volcano National Park there were signs in the parking lot that there was nothing to see, but while they were there, people were returning and saying there was lava starting up again. So they lucked out and saw red lava and a developing lava lake.
In the meantime back on the home front, three pigs were cruising on the coffee road right by our house at 9pm. After the two hour drive back to our place, our friend’s plan was to check on the trap and hunt pigs.
This is the way these guys roll!!!
Once they reached our house, they decided to take a power nap and get up to try and shoot a pig. They aren’t coffee drinkers, but they wanted sweet ice coffee for when they woke from their nap. So I made them Bea’s Knees coffee, doctored with sugar and heavy cream, and put it in the fridge. Looming over all of this is that we still had never figured out the piece about what to do if a pig was trapped or killed. Would they leave us with a dead pig right before they flew off on an 8am flight, not even 48 hours after they touched down? For the friend, this was his first time to the Big Island.
At 5am I got up and saw no evidence of any nighttime activity. The cold coffees were still in the fridge. Our camera showed three pigs cruising the coffee road at 3:30am, in the same place they were seen at 9pm. It’s about as close to our lānai as can be. Apparently our pig hunters did get up a few times in the night and texted each other whether they should get up and hunt, but each time they went back to sleep.
And then they were gone. Pesky pig problem persists. But left behind are a compound bow, arrows, new arrow tips, and great stories of adventures had.