13th March

“People here are still a little scared of bird flu,” said Dil.

We are talking about which animals are used for meat and which are used for other products.

As I said in the audio post, I hope you could hear it, we are staying amongst chickens, goats, cows and donkeys.

The chickens are used for eggs, they are eaten, but local people still worry about bird flu. In every little shop you come to there are dozens of eggs for sale. We are having at least one a day, usually with breakfast.

“I wonder what they do with the male cows here,” wondered Jim as we ambled along field walking earlier today.

The cow is sacred in Nepal and so it isn’t eaten. But when I asked Jim’s question to Dil later, he said that in certain regions like Manang, Mustang and Langtang the male cows are eaten, but surreptitiously.

The goats, well, they are everywhere! They are the main source of meat. Apparently, they are rarely milked, except sometimes to give the milk to children. But there is one area we’re heading to where you can get goat’s cheese at a very high price.

While we’ve been field walking today and while the goats have been out, our ‘team’ have been playing cards in the goats’ stable area – it’s one of the few places out of the wind.

As for donkeys, there are 10 chasing me up the steps to Upper Pisang (where I can get signal) at the moment, loaded with sacks of rice and other goods.

Location: Pisang (still)