When my parents came in December, they brought gifts from some people in the US. In one of those, there were chocolate pudding mixes! I made one a while ago in the city, but since I had made it with powdered milk instead of regular milk (since the powdered variety is much more common here), it didn’t taste so good. I decided that I’d wait to make the rest until I was in the village, where I could get real milk. But the other day here in the city I was able to find some, and boy, was that chocolate pudding yummier than the one made with the powdered milk!
However, I didn’t buy milk the same way that you think – stop by the grocery store or the gas station on your way home. Instead, . . .
I had just been to visit some acquaintances here in the city and was on my motorcycle on my way home. As I was driving, I noticed a slim lady with lighter skin, colorful clothing, and lots of jewelry. On her head she had a bowl sitting on top of a covered half of a calabash (gourd). I knew right away that she was a Fulani lady and that she was selling fresh milk out of her calabash. You see, the Fulani are known to be cattle herders. They also often have lighter skin, colorful clothing, lots of jewelry, and sell the milk out of calabashes that they carry on their head. So seeing her with her calabash, I automatically knew she was selling milk.
When I stopped her, wanting to buy milk, I didn’t really know how to do it since I’d never bought milk from them before (do you buy it by amount or price or . . .?). But she told me that it was 50 cents for a half of a liter, so I went ahead and bought a liter of milk for a dollar. That was two of these bags worth of milk.
Once I got home with it, I stuck it in the fridge since I didn’t have time to deal with it at the moment. But that evening I ran into a problem – I knew I probably had to boil it or something, but how long and what do I do? I then remembered that our night guard is a Fulani, so I walked out to my front porch and asked him. Sadly, he said that he just drinks it straight from the cow so doesn’t really know how long you’re supposed to boil it for. When that failed, I became a good American and just Googled it. 🙂
However, I must say that it was tricky to get that milk from those bags into the pot to boil it! And yes, I spilled milk on the stove top and the floor in the process. But no, I didn’t cry.
I must say, that fresh milk sure did make good chocolate pudding!