Wednesday, October 22, 2008

So Whatever Happened to Stew?

Some of you have been wondering what happened to Stew, our annoying 5 a.m. alarm clock… er, I mean the rooster we received as a gift from the chief of Youga. Well, we thought about having him for Canadian Thanksgiving dinner, which was only a few days later, but quickly decided against it. Chickens here are truly “free range” birds and their meat has all the juicy goodness and taste of well-cured shoe leather! And there’s barely enough meat on them to warrant the effort it takes to cook them. A quarter chicken dinner at Swiss Chalet has more meat on it than an entire free range bird here!

So we ended up giving him to our day guard, Benjamin (our night guard, Harouna, got the last one). And not just because Stew was an earlier riser than we were. Our yard just doesn’t have the room to let a chicken or two run around in it (and we don’t want to be stepping in you-know-what all the time either!). And besides, since meat of any kind is a rarity in the diet of most Burkinabè because it’s just too expensive for them, a free chicken is much appreciated by the average Joe (and since they’ve never had Swiss Chalet chicken to compare it to, they think it tastes pretty good!).

Yesterday, I asked Benjamin what he ended up doing with the rooster. Did they decide to use him as the beginning of a little flock of their own, or had they already eaten him? “Well,” said Benjamin slowly, “he’d begin crowing at 2 o’clock in the morning. Then he’d start again at 3 a.m., and again at 4. Finally, we couldn’t take it anymore!”

Haha, I know exactly what he’s talking about!

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