Nunz, the Magic Piglet

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(To the tune of Puff, the Magic Dragon)

Nunz, the magic piglet lived by Sabine

And frolicked in the autumn mist in a land called Mehoopany

Little Magdalena loved that piglet Nunz

And brought him hay and apple cores and other fancy stuff…

I lay in the back of the car, singing as we sped towards the vet hospital.   Tears washed down my face, baptizing an old, wrinkled pig with love. He groaned and writhed in my arms.  Nunzi was having a stroke.

Years ago, when Nunzi first arrived at Indraloka, he screamed whenever a human was near. We discovered that singing eased his fear, so I made up a million silly songs to sing to him daily. Nunzi has not been frightened of people in years, and the songs had faded from our days. Yet now, here, as he lay struggling for life beside me, singing seemed the only way to comfort either of us.

Blue moon, you saw me standing alone

Without a dream in my heart

Without a pig of my own

Blue moon, you knew just what I was there for

You heard me saying a prayer for

Some pig I truly could care for…

Suddenly, his struggles ceased. He opened his eyes and looked into mine.

The moment stretched backwards to encompass the last eight years we shared together: Nunzi as a frightened newcomer; Nunzi learning to trust again; Nunzi and Magdie learning to take off each other’ electric collars to escape the underground fence. Countless nights he slept cuddled with his beloved Magdalena; countless days he played with sheep, chickens, and turkeys.

Greeting newcomers

He and Magdelena were very close to a horse named Sabine, whose chronic foot problems made walking painful. However, we had to keep her walking in order to keep the blood flow in her feet so that she could heal. So, I used to place her hay on the far side of her paddock. On Sabine’s bad days, Magdie and Nunzi would carry the hay in their mouths back to Sabine’s bedside. They would lay with her and comfort her for hours on end.

The memories continued to flow from his eyes, as if a projector were hidden behind his pupils. Nunzi went through a period of a few years when he bit everyone in sight. Volunteers were afraid to feed him. He bit me, too, but that only made me love him more. This was just another way of expressing fear. I knew it would pass.

And pass it did. For the last several years, Nunzi approached humans excitedly, with a twinkle in his eyes. To keep up his reputation as a grumpy old man, he complained vociferously whenever he was touched, but his smiling eyes and wagging tail gave him away.

We remembered last year, when a group of Buddhist monks visited the sanctuary. Nunzi was so excited to be blessed he forgot to grumble about it!

Photo courtesy of Joel Anderson
Photo courtesy of Joel Anderson

And this past spring, when he and Magdie had a terrible fight. For months they refused to talk to each other, or even look at one another. Happily, they worked through their problems and reconciled, more cuddly and friendly than ever through the long summer days.

Just last weekend, Nunzi had enjoyed himself immensely at Pig Pampering Day, when volunteers traveled from hours away just to give the pigs belly rubs and mud baths. Oh yes, Nunzi loved pig pampering days!

The film came to the present moment, me lying next to him, both of us covered in tears. And then, with one long exhale, Nunzi was gone.

Enjoying Pig Pampering Day
Magdie and Nunzi
Magdie and Nunzi


Love you forever and forever
Love you with all my heart
Love you whenever we’re together
Love you when we’re apart

Namah Shivaya my friend, my magic piglet.  It was a blessing to walk the path with you.

26 thoughts on “Nunz, the Magic Piglet

    Lisa Caputo said:
    September 9, 2015 at 1:12 am

    I’m so sorry Indra. My heart is broken. Nunzi will live in my heart forever.


      indralokaanimalsanctuary said:
      September 9, 2015 at 6:59 pm

      Rejoice, Lisa! No need to mourn. We took Nunzi from a bad end and gave him a great death at an old age. This is the whole point of sanctuary work. Of course we miss him, but would that we all die so well…


    Kimberly Carpenter said:
    September 9, 2015 at 4:39 am

    Awee Nunzi….💔 I am so sorry for your loss and glad to have gotten to see him again.


    Lynn Braz said:
    September 9, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    Oh, Indra, this is one of the most beautiful pieces of writing I’ve read. You are a blessing to the animals and environment, and through your example and your powerful writing, you bless us humans too. I can’t imagine what it’s like to lose “children” regularly, the amount of grief you bear. But I can imagine that the joy and love you are gifted by caring for these wonderful creatures outweighs the grief of losing them. For me, grief never gets easier. Each loss amplifies the previous losses, and my heart can feel so heavy. Now, when I need to grieve I come to this blog and read your words and know that loss itself is a blessing. It means I’ve loved. Thank you for your work and for your writing. Wishing you comfort and peace.


      indralokaanimalsanctuary said:
      September 9, 2015 at 6:57 pm

      Lynn, yes!!! You are exactly right. Each crossing of a loved one is truly a sacred thing and a blessing. Thank you.


    Gayle Sensi said:
    September 9, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    Blessings 😦


    Julia Hustad said:
    September 9, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    So sorry for your loss, but grateful that Nunzi had many years of happiness with you all!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Amy said:
    September 9, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    My thought are with you today Indra for the loss of your beloved friend. But what a beautiful existence he had at your sanctuary!


      indralokaanimalsanctuary said:
      September 9, 2015 at 6:53 pm

      Thank you Amy. Truly, Nunzi’s crossing is cause for celebration. He had a good last 8 years and a good death. What more can we ask?


    Steve Skammer said:
    September 9, 2015 at 3:12 pm

    Nunzi will remember you forever…..


    Char said:
    September 9, 2015 at 11:33 pm

    Indra you are truly amazing.


    Barbara de Jong said:
    September 10, 2015 at 2:06 am

    So sorry to hear you lost Nunzi. I remember meeting him and Magdie. You are amazing and do amazing things for all the animals. Would Nick have met Nunzi? I think so. Love, Barbara


      indralokaanimalsanctuary said:
      September 10, 2015 at 9:33 pm

      Yes, Barbara, I do believe Nick and Nunzi knew one another. Knowing Nick, he probably lived Nunzi very much. One of the nicest things about Nick was his compassion. I am certain he learned that from you, Barbara.


    Marie said:
    September 10, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    Indra, I’m so very saddened by the news of Nunzi’s death and for your loss. What a beautifully written tribute to a life well lived!
    His passing allows for the rescue and saving of another soul. There is purpose in every death.
    Peace be with you.


      indralokaanimalsanctuary said:
      September 10, 2015 at 9:35 pm

      Marie, you are so right. There is certainly a purpose in all things, death included. Thank you for your kind words.


    Michelle Bedard said:
    September 10, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    The love and connection you have to the animals is incredible.  When I read your post I too have a tear or two or more fall.   Thank you for all your work you do to ensure these animals have a sanctuary to call home – Indraloka. May God Bless you always, Michelle BedardManchester NH


    Deb Bednar said:
    September 10, 2015 at 10:50 pm

    I just finished reading your story of Nunzi, God Bless and thank you for that. I can remember when I first came to Indraloka so many years ago(seems like a lifetime sometimes) how I use to walk with Nunzi and Magdi thur the small fenced area at the time and would talk with them and try to become more comfortable and accepted by them. I am thankful Sarah gave me the moment to say my goodbyes to Nunzi. Thank you for your heartfelt words and sharing with us.


    Lori said:
    September 12, 2015 at 10:31 am

    I remember the day Nunzi and Magdie arrived. I also remember the first time we put their electronic collars on…what a challenge that was. At least Nunzi learned to love and trust again. After all he went through it is very heartwarming to know that his life ended with peace, love and happiness.


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