A Favorite Expression With Them Is, "I Was Born On Horseback."
Stone not being found on the pampas, these people generally build
their houses of square sods, with a roof of plaited grasses -
sometimes I have observed these beautifully woven together.
more holes, according to the size of the house, are left to serve for
door and window. Wood cannot be obtained, glass has not been
introduced, so the holes are left as open spaces, across which, when
the pampa wind blows, a hide is stretched. No hole is left in the
roof for the smoke of the fire to escape, for this to the native is
no inconvenience whatever. When I have been compelled to fly with
racking cough and splitting head, he has calmly asked the reason.
Never could I bear the blinding smoke that issues from his fire of
sheep or cow dung burning on the earthen floor, though he heeds it
not as, sitting on a bullock's skull, he ravenously eats his evening
If entertaining a stranger, he will press uncut joint after joint of
his asado upon him. This asado is meat roasted over the fire on a
spit; if beef, with the skin and hair still attached. Meat cooked in
this way is a real delicacy. A favorite dish with them (I held a
different opinion) is a half-formed calf, taken before its proper
time of birth. The meat is often dipped in the ashes in lieu of salt.
I have said the Gaucho has no chair.
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