Till this morning when I stumbled upon a surprisingly eye-opening conversation between them. Let's call them Sombre Salmi & Siti.
Siti: Can't be sure about the quality of goods at the stores here.
Salmi : Doubt they prepare them properly. Heathens the entire lot of people here.
Siti : Quite suspicious about the sold at the market as well.
Salmi : Looks tender, juicy and delicious - but I bet doubly sinful! Think you have to watch the handlers well to see that they don't sully the innocent goods.
Siti : So true. Never can tell whether they switch the goods we wanted. So hard to trust people these days!
Salmi : Easier to get one fresh off the farm so that we can indoctrinate them properly.
Siti : Really skin and dice them well.
Salmi : Offer a prayer for their souls.
Coming from a Chinese fella who eats almost everything on the earth, sky and sea ( horrific I know! ), it left me puzzled at first. Not to mention a little suspicious. Were they talking about the local working girls? Surely my sober colleague wouldn't fraternize such unseemly places. The thought of God-fearing Salmi picking up one of the many painted streetwalkers here left me agog.
Preparing the Goods?
Then Siti and Salmi started discussing ways of plucking the chicken.
Surely it couldn't be a euphemism for a sex position. Then I figured out they were talking about food. Halal food that is - which isn't that easy to find around here these parts. And the method of ritual slaughter in conformance to Islamic religious law.
Forbidden for you are carrion, and blood, and flesh of swine, and that which has been slaughtered while proclaiming the name of any other than God, and one killed by strangling, and one killed with blunt weapons, and one which died by falling, and that which was gored by the horns of some animal, and one eaten by a wild beast, except those whom you slaughter; and that which is slaughtered at the altar and that which is distributed by the throwing of arrows [for an omen]; this is an act of sin.
Thank the Lord. You never know just how difficult it is to eat till you hear these folks talk about food preparation. So endlessly exhausting to hear the two debate over which store supposedly provides the holier service! Even nit-picked over every tedious step in the increasingly complex preparation. For a moment they even considered rearing chickens on their own!
Wouldn't it be easier to just turn vegetarian?