No, it is not a mis-spelling for Armistice Day. Today, in our house, it is Armadillo Day. The local word for armadillo is “Cusuco”, used more commonly here in Central America.
Click a Pic for its larger image…..
Jesus’ brother was quite proud of his capture yesterday, and showed it off to family and visiting neighbors (no that’s not him in the pic, its another neighbor). Everyone took their turn poking and prodding it, some jumping back a few feet when he grunted and arched his back in response. Of course, he couldn’t run very far, as a shoelace was tied around his belly, making movement all the more difficult and slow for him. I felt sorry for the poor guy. He was rather cute, in a cusuco kind of way, with a long snout that was soft and pink at the end, and funny little ears that curled a bit at the tops. Hard to tell where his eyes were or if he could see very well. They kept him under a wooden crate with a heavy rock on top most of the time, but every chance he had at freedom he leapt into the nearest corner, trying to burrow himself out of this jam, making his funny grunting sounds all the while.
In the wee hours of the morning I woke to the sound of what seemed like someone playing Tupperware drums. I peeked out the door and realized it was Mr. Armadillo, making a valiant struggle to escape. I walked over to his wooden house and gave him my condolences. “Sorry, buddy, I can’t set you free – everyone will know it was me.” About mid-morning I heard a thudding noise and the sounds of a few people out front, only to open the door and see my brother-in-law Gito beating the cusuco’s head with a hammer. “How disgusting”, I exclaimed, and closed the door shut again. They all laughed. This is the type of entertainment you find out here in the middle of nowhere, El Salvador.
After it was cooked, they offered me cusuco, but I declined.