"They set off through the foothills. It was still quite warm and Yak got very hot and sticky in Buffalo’s coat."

When buffaloes are born, they have lush, brown, wavy coats that catch the eye immediately. As they age, that coat is shed for a dull gray appearance. The children in Nepal often ask what happens to that coat, and this folktale aims to explain that phenomenon. Friendly traders from Tibet cross the mountains in order to purchase and bring back varieties of tools, clothes, and other items that can’t be found in their country. Delighted with their purchases, they need a way to transport the goods home, so they ask the calm and regal Buffalo for help. Concerned that it would be too cold for her to find water, she suggests the traders ask Yak for help. Yak agrees but before leaving urges Buffalo to lend him her coat in order to stay warm.

A child’s world is usually only as large as they have seen, and so a story such as this one helps to broaden their horizons and teaches them about the culture and lifestyle in a faraway land. Using this simple fable and a series of soft ink and watercolor illustrations, children can learn about life in Nepal and how the children there help feed the animals on the family farm. Aside from the possibly unfamiliar setting, the structure of this story should be familiar to children with the bold characters of Buffalo and Yak interacting in a straightforward style that represents the animals’ real-life behaviors. Featuring at least one picture per page, young readers will be able to visually understand the story as they learn or have it read aloud to them, making it ideal for children of any age.

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