Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Meat Shack

Today I ventured to the “meat shack” (literally) but of course here they call it the Boucherie. I would like to paint a picture of it for you. 
The dirty white shack with a picture of a steak and a cow painted on the outside sits precariously on the uneven red earth. I poke my head in the window where they serve from and ask if they have cow meat (viande de le vache). The man says yes and then asks for how many kilos. I say I have no idea but that I need meat for 6 people. He then motions for me to enter the meat shack. This is where it gets rather interesting. I slowly approach the side door and step inside very hesitantly. In the right hand corner of the shack on the floor lies a full sized cow basically ripped open with the black skin laid out and the insides exposed to many flies. The head lies on the ground still attached to the skin of the body and I can see the red flesh inside the head. To the right of the head lies a hunk skin about the size of a car tire (it might be a little smaller but in my eyes it of course seemed very large). Poking out beneath the black skin I can see the hoofs of this beast as well as a few intestines lying around. After taking in the scene my automatic instinct is that “I want to get as far away from here as possible” maybe even just run out the door right now. But of course I told myself, “all I need to do is buy the meat and leave, and plus this is making a rather interesting cultural experience.” In the left hand corner of the shack stood a tree stump with a machete driven into the side of it and on top laid some flesh from the beast. The Butcher grabbed up a slab of meat from off the ground and told me that it was the best meat from the beast and that he thought 3 kilos would be sufficient (little did I know that 3 kilos was definitely too much). So he chopped off the fatty parts, put it in the token "sache noir" (black plastic bags that every boutique has) and handed it to me. While he was cutting up the meat for me I was in quite a nervous state and felt that I needed to make conversation with the Butcher's wife. So I inquired as to what they do with the cow's head. She then asked if I wanted to buy it and I abruptly said "Non Merci!" very loudly. She said that it is very good with potatoes and you can make good soup with it. I just nodded and said, "ah, oui, okay!" and looked anxiously over to where my meat was being prepared hoping he would hurry up so I could get out of this terrifying shack. Well I finally left and I am happy to say that the meat ended up tasting not too bad...I have had worse. 

1 comment:

  1. You must be very hungy these days.
    Did Tomas enjoy the meat??