16 January 2006

Mbuzi tena (Goat again)

One interesting snippet of my trip….I had to eat half a goat! Okay, it wasn’t half a goat, more like half a goat shared by 6 people. We had it in Engaruka, one of the Maasai villages we visited where Bernard has a particularly close contact. As a welcome to the visitors the Maasai offered us food. Picture if you will, six people sitting around half a cooked goat sitting on a bed of leaves. One Maasai takes a piece of the goat and skewers it on a pointed stick anchored in the ground. This way he can take his big knife/blade and cut quarter size pieces off, one for each person at a time, around in a circle until the whole thing is eaten. Seeing as I was a visitor, hoping to ingratiate myself with the village and wanting to be respectful of their culture, I didn’t tell them I don’t eat meat. Instead, I tried not to think about the very juicy (sometimes red tinted juicy) meat, nor the fat still on the pieces of meat. Even if I ate meat, I have to say, I don’t like the taste of goat! Perhaps it is an acquired trait. After about 10 rounds of the meat, I was behind on eating my pieces, I couldn’t eat them as fast as everyone else, so I convinced the server to pass me up for a round every now and then. This allowed me to eat a little less, but I kept chewing and not thinking until the last scrap of goat was served. Well not really last scrap. When I thought it was all finished the server cut the bones and sucked out the marrow. Thank goodness he didn’t offer it to me because there was no way I could have eaten it!. It was bad enough hearing him eat it. Despite my best efforts, whenever my mind wandered for the remainder of the trip, it returned to eating the mbuzi. Ugh!


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