I go up to the village shop, which sells meat as well as almost everything else you could possibly want, to order a guinea fowl for lunch tomorrow. I explain to Renato, the butcher, that I really want a rabbit, but I’m not sure whether the one American and two Brits who are coming to lunch like rabbit. Many people, especially the British, don’t. ‘I’ve heard they think of them as pets, like cats’. ‘Perhaps it’s partly that, but’, I counter, ‘many people say they find the flavour “dirty”’. Renato understands perfectly. He explains that a rabbit has tiny glands, particularly behind the knee, but other places as well, which cause that ‘dirty’ taste. I can be absolutely sure when I buy my rabbits from him they won’t have that flavour, because he removes every little gland himself. With that reassurance I tell him that if he can’t get a guinea fowl, I’ll take a rabbit. I’m almost hoping he can’t get the guinea fowl after all.
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