Sunday, June 15, 2008

Laughfest #3

Women pounding millet: batik cloth

The third full-belly happy-fest was also at my expense (they all are when it boils down to it, but I can deal...), and it was shared with N'arba and various other villagers. See, I decided to get some pounding equipment made: the traditional really heavy pounding stick and bowl (think of it as a giant mortar and pestle). The guy who chops them out of wood made one for me, and N'arba and I went to pick it up one afternoon. As we carried it back to my home (I held the stick and N'arba held the bowl on her head), inevitably we drew a lot of attention. Everyone bugs me about pounding millet, and it was exciting, I'm sure, to see that I had turned over a new leaf. So anyway, the question that was asked over and over was "What are you going to pound?" And my answer was never millet, because I'm probably not going to pound millet; it was one of a handful of other foods that one also pounds (hot peppers to make, duh, pepper for example). In particular I plan on pounding kulikuli, a hard brown ball of pure protein that I think is peanut resin (not sure). Anyway, something about the way I say kulikuli brought N'arba-and everyone else that we passed-to tears of laughter; or maybe it is the fact that kulikuli isn't really that hard, and may not need to be pounded... I shared the glee with her all the way home, a veritable trail of laughter leading right to my door. Priceless.

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