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Yesterday evening was Pig Wash Day at the laundromat, the event in which I take all the deliciously urine-soaked towels and fleece the pigs live on and throw them in a super long, super hot load with vinegar and deodorizing detergent and hope for the best.  When I open the dryers, I pretend I'm not greeted by a puff of pee steam.

Pig Wash Yesterday means Clean Cage Today.  I stopped at the pet store on the way home from work to pick up a double-wide Pigloo in pale green with sparkles, in anticipation of tonight's fluffy, clean bedding.

The evening rolled through first washing the dishes, which had taken over the counter and had started calling me mean names every time I came into the kitchen.  It was so wonderful when they all hushed down to drip dry.  I also took down the kitchen trash, which contained some geriatric apricots that were the brand new home of a batch of fruit flies, and as much of the recycling as I could carry with one hand.  At that point it was cool enough to hit the streets, so I went out for a run, which was delightful and left me salty, sticky, and longing for a hot victory shower.

It made sense to clean the cage *before* washing up, so I piled the pigs into their carry cage and went about my business.  Normally I rotate between washing the cage with white  vinegar one week and Nature's Miracle the next.  Tonight was a vinegar night.  The process of cleaning the cage generally takes about ten minutes, so I didn't think much of giving the girls a single dish towel that was on hand instead of their usual 3 or 4 hand towels, which were all still buried in the pile of clean pigstuff.  I swept up the poos and trampled hay (anyone have a garden that could use some AWESOME fertilizer?  It always seems like such a waste to throw this all away).  I rolled up the fleece, and then each of the squashed, dirty towels, depositing all in a garbage bag, tying it tight and setting it aside for the next Pig Wash Day.

And then I saw them.  Little black fruit flies.  Everywhere.  They were in the base of the cage (which is made of coroplast), and all over the wall.  *Poof*  They were everywhere.  I couldn't figure out where they'd come from.  In an attempt to kill them off in droves I reached for the Windex and sprayed the bottom of the cage, then all over the wall, then the base of the cage again, wiping them all up as I went, sure that that must have eliminated the majority of them.  Normally I would never use Windex on the cage, but I felt this was a special occasion.  Then I noticed a concentration of them in the corner of the cage, all bunched together.  I sprayed the windex into the seam of the cage base and whoosh, out washed a tiny river of twitching, dying fruit flies.  They were living IN THE COROPLAST.  OMG GROSS.  All I can imagine is that some of the apricot fruit flies moved away from home after college and thought that the corner of a pig cage where the most poops collect would be a great place to start over.  I continued to spray into the corner until they stopped washing out, and gave the next corner over the same treatment.  By now the cage had been completely scrubbed down about three times.

Finally I was ready to spread out the fresh towels and fleece, position the pretty double-wide Pigloo between the blue and purple smaller ones, and fill the cage with pigs.  They always treat a clean cage with the curiosity of travelers who have just stumbled upon a delightful new planet.  Each Pigloo must be entered and marked with one's urine, and then the food must be found.  It makes the unpleasantness of cleaning up after them totally and completely worth it.

I returned to the carry cage to retrieve my pigs.  Brogan was first out, and she got right to business exploring.  I reached in next for Lieb, who pulled her signature Houdini and dodged my hand.  I reached for Sass instead and...SQUISH.  Her entire belly was soaked with pee.  They'd pushed the hand towel to one side and she sat in the back of the carrier for about 20 minutes longer than expected, absorbing a puddle of someone's pee, possibly her own.  Great.  Awesome.  Fantastic.

After fishing Lieb out of the carrier and returning her to her cage, I picked up Sass with one hand, grabbed a ten gallon bucket and the bottle of Bunny Wash in the other, and plunked her in the tub.  I ditched my running clothes and filled the bucket with warm water, then picked up the soggy pig, looked her right in the buldging, horrified red eyes and told her, "This is love, Wee One.  Pure, unadulterated love."  I proceeded to bathe her in the bucket, for which she was rather well behaved despite her terror.  She's actually quite long when she stands on her tip-toes and can just barely reach the bottom (but I held her butt up with one hand for the majority of this procedure).

As I have no hair dryer, we finished up with a few towel rubs to get the worst of the water out of her fur.  I turned off the air conditioner so she wouldn't catch a chill, wrapped her in a pig towel burrito and covered her with one of the smaller Pigloos, hoping she would be either patient or scared enough to remain in her personal steam room until the towel had soaked up the rest of the water.  Unwilling to watch her most assuredly shrug off both the Pigloo and my advice, I returned to the bathroom to wash first the bucket, then my running clothes, then the tub (which kinda needed it) and finally, gloriously, exhaustedly, myself.

It is now after 11 and I have yet to eat a proper supper.  This is love.  Pure, unadulterated piglove.


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