Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Little Goat's Last Laugh

Tomorrow the streets will be bloody.
Bulls and goats are tethered to fences and posts along the city roadsides. "We'll begin with prayers and then at 8 o'clock tomorrow the sacrifices will begin," local man Sigit tells me as we admire the seventeen goats in a makeshift pen in one of the Benhil neighbourhoods in the heart of Jakarta. "Doesn't this farmyard smell bother you?" he asks.
"I just bought one. That one," says a bystander pointing. "We've named him Pilok."
The animals which have been bought are identified by simple name cards around their necks. "Some are still for sale...," Sigit adds. A goat costs between Rp 1 million ($100) and Rp 2 million. Bulls start at around Rp 7 million.
"These goats are a year or two old, but for really tasty satay you should have a 3-month-old goat," Sigit advises.

Tomorrow, November 17, these animals will be slaughtered and quartered for distribution to Jakarta's poor. This is the Idul Adha holiday celebrating Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son for God.

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