The Year of the Goat: 40,000 Miles and the Quest for the Perfect Cheese

by Margaret Hathaway

I got interested in cheese, so when I saw this title on Amazon I immediately wanted to read it.

The truth is, the subtitle is misleading. The book is about goat alright, but cheese doesn’t feature much in the book at all. They did taste a few cheeses, but any mention barely last more than a few lines and the taste comment doesn’t go much beyond a couple of words. Definitely not what I expect from a quest for cheese.

The author and her boyfriend have a sudden “goat fever”, and decided to take a year off on a tour around the country, embarked on a goat odyssey and in general satisfying their love for goat (which includes goat in all forms: from the bleating little kid to the warm cashmere socks to the goat stew). They went to a goat auction, attended a goat convention, watched goat chariot race, spoke to chefs and cheesemakers, visited farms big and small, learned to milk a goat, went on a goat-packing hike and finally had a goat-themed wedding. Most of the time they spent their nights at campsites or bundled up in a sleeping bag inside their cars. For a happy ending, at the end of the year they know what they want. They decided they could no longer go back to their Manhattan urban life. They wanted to be farmers, they wanted their children growing up on a farm.

Theirs is a personal awakening humbly told. They are surprised by how friendly and open these people living in rural area are, and are gradually disarmed and then won over from their urban lifestyle. They had nice jobs in New York, but they yearn for a simpler lifestyle with little want. In this day and age, they are certainly not alone, many people just couldn’t find satisfaction in their high paying and materialistic job. But rare indeed is someone who have their courage to really uproot and follow their dreams.

Published in: on August 30, 2008 at 2:16 am  Leave a Comment  

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