Written in 1986, wild pork and watercress, by Barry Crump, is the story of Ricky Baker. Ricky is 12 years and three weeks old a quarter Maori boy. Told in the first-person narrative, Ricky tells his story with humor.
Ricky is a victim of racism and the New Zealand Social Welfare system. He continues to run away from authority and tells us he is treated differently because of his dark skin.
We learn that Ricky is misunderstood, people are too quick to make assumptions about him. Ricky is actually very clever, and a fast learner.
Ricky is finally sent to live with his Aunt Bella and his uncle Hec on a run-down farm by a river far inland from Gisborne. ‘The Faulkners’ farm was up a valley beside a river called the Apopo, and had everything about the place was old and falling to bits.
Aunt Bella is loving and accepting towards Ricky, she treats him like her own son. Uncle Hec is a man of the few words who can be grumpy. “He can talk the talk but not walk the walk”, he is a lazy farmer.