Heyo, for those who didn’t read the update, I had a ton of irl work to do so I didn’t have time to finish this chapter on time (my crippling (chapter) debt has grown huh…). In order for me not to get more (chapter) debt each week, as well as because something came up that’ll eat away at bit more at my available free time, I can only promise 1 chapter a week (if all goes well). When I can, I’ll post up to 4 chapters per week, but I highly doubt I’ll ever get more than 2 chapters a week for the next few weeks. Enjoy the chapter then~
In the forest side village, early in the morning.
Waking up at sunrise, then immediately starting to work in the morning.
The work varies, but in the case where there isn’t any work, you first clean up after dinner.
Into the metal pot, throw the used tableware and cooking utensils, as well as grease-stained cloth and such, and go to the water to wash them.
Why not clean it up the night before? That’s because, even though it’s carved out human territory, there’s no small risk of encountering dangerous wild animals at night.
Vigilant Giba and the like rarely appear, however, if they are hungry they will come down to the village. They break through the territory of the people of the forest, and attack the Jenos territory’s fields to the west.
Besides Giba, it’s said that the carrion scavenging Muntos, the giant Giizu mice, and various poisonous snakes and poisonous lizards are especially dangerous. There are no large carnivores that prey on humans, but if you’re bitten by those vermin, you can get a serious illness that’s hard to cure.
That’s why, the cleaning of cooking utensils takes place in the morning.
The place, is at the closest water source to each house.
The closest place to Ai-Fa’s house, is a place that’s a 10 minute walk away, a small tributary of the Lant River.
Flowing through a rugged rocky area, a modest stream of water. Rather than a tributary, it’s more like water trickling over rocks.1
So the pots and dishes are washed.
The tools, are made of dried and processed Giba fur, it’s like a scrubbing brush.
The pot and dishes are greasy and oily, but when scrubbed with the short trimmed fur, they become unexpectedly pretty.
Cloths that have been dirtied by grease, are also washed at that time.
When there is time to spare, the washing of clothes is also done at that time.
After, when the water bottle is running low on water, it will also be similarly replenished.
Because both the metal pot and the water bottle are heavy, when carrying them a tool called a “pull-board” is used.
Sticking fur onto the back of a large board, then applying solidified fat there, and that makes the transportation tool. Using a cord made by tying together dried vines, the luggage is fixed on the board, a puller of the same material is slung over the shoulder, and it’s dragged along with a zuruzuru.
Applying fat reduces the coefficient of friction, and it feels like it’s probably eliminating about half the weight, but if you pour water into the water bottle until it’s full, it would weigh about 100 kilograms heavy, so it’s pretty tough.
However, sometimes there are encounters with people of other clans at the water, they were all women.
Most of them were older women who had much stronger builds than I did, but some elderly women and young women also appeared.
Even those girls, didn’t have such hard looks on their faces as they pulled the pull-board. I might even declare, that I was the one with the most strained face.
“You really are a powerless man”, said of course by my dear mistress. Dammit.
Incidentally, it’s at the morning’s water place where people from other clans are together the closest, and as expected, almost no one tried to approach Ai-Fa.
There are some women who occasionally say a greeting, but they don’t ask for any exchanges other than that, we don’t ask for any either.
To incur the wrath of the rulers of the people of the forest, the Sun clan, this, is what it means.
Also, with the appearance of a raw pale man wearing white cooking clothes and a T-shirt that wouldn’t exist in this world, there’s the adverse effect of being able to look even more suspicious, I think that it’s definitely there.
After all, when a man with such a bizarre appearance is hovering around Ai-Fa, no one asks “Who’s that?”. Everyone just looks from a distance, and don’t even try to make eye contact.
As an aside, what these women were wearing, were the same beautiful cloth clothes as Ai-Fa.
They didn’t stand out even when entering the forest, a chic colour combination of mainly dark greens and reddish browns, those colours were intricately entwined in complex swirl patterns, and were very ethnic and fashionable.
Married women, loosely wrapped a large piece of fabric around them, hiding from their chest to their knees.
Unmarried women, like Ai-Fa only hid their chest and waist.
Of course, there were no women who wore large fur mantles or carried large barbarian swords, Ai-Fa herself, only carried a small knife with her except when heading into the forest.
A sword like that, women who carried them around weren’t few. Even if they didn’t have the job of hunting Giba, it was still quite versatile such as for when picking herbs or cutting vines.
Also, the people in the forest village, all had brown skin as I had thought. Hair and eye colours varied, but light brown hair, and blue eyes, seem to be the most standard.
Black hair and red hair, and gold hair like Ai-Fa’s could also be seen a bit, and although I’m not sure because they don’t come too close, I think some women had black or brown eyes.
But, yellow people like me, there wasn’t even a single one.
At any rate, once the work at the water source was done, next is to work indoors.
As a daily routine, the sword is cared for.
Checking the condition of the blade and handle, and making repairs if necessary. The whetstones in this world, are rugged obsidian-like glossy black stones.
When that’s done, we go to the pantry, to check the ingredients.
I also check the condition of the arias and poitans, but the most important, is the Giba meat.
Checking whether or not the meat has spoiled, the pico leaves are stirred evenly. When the meat is pickled, the water in it gradually moves to the pico leaves, if it’s not stirred once a day, then it seems that the pico leaves that have absorbed too much water lose their preservation・sterilization effect.
While doing so, the necessary amount of dried meat that’s buried in the same way as the raw meat is cut off, and finally it’s breakfast.
While chewing on the chewy and rubbery meat, we head towards the forest.
The goal, is firewood and herb collection, as well as bathing.
By that time the Sun, would already have its height at the midpoint between dawn and noon.
In other words, the first morning after I arrived at Ai-Fa’s house, Ai-Fa by herself had been doing all the chores before dawn, after which she completely finished preparations to depart to the forest early in the morning, woke me up while I was asleep, that’s what I mean.
Even so, due to staying asleep, my body ended up in a ridiculous act, I’m sort of embarrassed.
When I again extended an apology for my error, I was kicked. About 3 times. It was very painful.
At any rate, heading towards the forest.
First is downstream of the Lant River, flowing water.
It’s, a bath.
That, giant madarama snake and Giba wave attack left a strong trauma in my heart, but my beloved mistress said “such a situation happens very rarely”, and simply gave a cold look to the weak otherworlder.
But it’s true, that giant madarama snake is a natural enemy of the Giba, and it’s because that guy reigns in the mountains, that Giba chose the foot of the mountain’s forest edge as their castle. If the madarama were to appear in the forest once in a while, then the Giba would flee elsewhere, or their numbers would have decreased more.
Which means, the madarama coming down to the foot of the mountain, must have been an irregular situation. It must have slipped on its feet or scales in the mountain and fell into the river, and just drifted. It truly is an annoying snake.
Armed with such a theory, I was finally able to enjoy the bath.
Because the average air temperature is more or less 30 degrees celsius, the bath felt really good.
I never had the habit of taking a morning bath, but the time it took for this bath to feel like a blissful moment to me, wasn’t much.
This is another aside but, after that first day happened, I haven’t violated any of the people of the forest’s taboo, I would like to make a special mention of that. I swear on my soul. I will never do that, ever.
Once the bath is done, herb collection.
The important thing, are pico leaves.
Pico leaves, as a preservative, deteriorates when it absorbs water from the meat. Even if you properly stir it everyday, they will completely lose their effectiveness in around one month.
The meat’s storage space, is 2 meters x 2 meters x 30 centimeters. Because that amount of pico leaves must be completely replaced once every month, it’s necessary to secure a considerable amount on a regular basis.
A pause in pico, is a pause in meat. Because this is a matter that is fairly directly related to life support activities, it’s calculated exactly on a daily basis, if it doesn’t seem to reach the quota, the time given to pico leaf collection will be prioritized.
Once that’s done, we get started on grigi nut2 and riilo leaf3 collection.
Grigi nuts, are nuts necessary for pest repellent.
To protect themselves from poisonous bugs and snakes lurking in the forest, the people of the forest weave the nuts into bracelets. I wear it around my neck because it gets in the way of cooking. And, if you sow it around your house, you can eliminate the risk of being invaded through the window at night, so the amount for that is also collected regularly.
Riilo leaves, are an herb needed to make dried meat.
Though it’s not used as much as pico leaves, it’s still not inferior in importance.
Incidentally, the fascinating fragrance of Ai-Fa, one of the factors that make it up, were these riilo leaves. Cool and calming, despite the elegant scent that could be used for aromatherapy, it harmonizes with the violent smell of meat and fat. No matter what it was a wonderful herb.
However, I didn’t tell Ai-Fa that. Because probably, she would just kick my foot. (TN: don’t forget he’s still injured there)
After collecting those, finally it’s firewood collection.
Firewood is a burden, so it’s the last thing.
Picking up all the fallen branches that qualified as firewood, we bundle them with vines that grew naturally in that area. If the desired amount isn’t collected, the young trees are taken back, and will then be dried at home.
Also, several times a day in this land, rain falls like a squall. Because this is an unpredictable natural phenomenon, it’s not uncommon for firewood collected with much effort to become soaked. So we don’t get discouraged, and keep collecting. When it gets wet it gets wet, it just needs to dry, it’s necessary to have a spirit of openness.
And also, my cooking method uses more fire than usual, so firewood collection is an important matter.
But then一一in the work we are engaged in, there isn’t a single unimportant matter, that’s for sure.
I mentioned that pico leaf collection is important, but it’s also a matter of priority, if you don’t complete everything, you can’t stay alive.
Washing dishes, drawing water, sharpening swords, as well as managing food, and collecting herbs, and collecting firewood, and hunting Giba, everything is for survival.
No matter which one is omitted, life would be impossible.
In order to survive, work.
Work hard all day, and then you can finally survive.
It might be because the people of the forest are engaged in such a lifestyle, that they didn’t pay attention to acts such as “improving the quality of food”.
Meat, and arias, and poitan, you can eat if you boil them.
No further process is needed.
In order to live, eat.
Like any other job, it’s a “means” of survival.
There is no entertainment there.
“Taste” and such, they don’t matter.
If you don’t eat you die. So eat. Nothing more nothing less.
As an animal, in a way it might be the right way to look at it.
The Giba nabe that Ai-Fa made, and the Giba soup that I made, there is no difference in nutritional value.
If that’s the case, it’s better to make it in a short time and without hassle, that might be the right thing in this world.
But I, am a person from another world.
I came from a world that knows the enjoyment of [food], a stranger.
So I, I have no choice but to follow my style.
My struggle in this other world, is only just getting started.
- Dunno what ishiwamizu is (岩清水みたいなものである).
- I called it a fruit before, but the next sentence confirms it’s a nut.
- Can’t remember if I called this something else in a past chapter.