Frosty Morn

Deerfield, IL. Just below freezing. Should be a lovely day here on the shores of Lake Michigan, so much so that I am somewhat sad to leave.

Sunday Breather

This has been my first quiet day in six weeks, and my last for at least another four. Ensconced comfortably for the day in the lobby bar of my Shanghai hotel, you  bet I go for a pot of the really good stuff.

It is, after all, the little things.

A Little New York in Singapore

Eighteen days into a three week swing through Asia, I was done with hotel breakfast buffets. I wanted a breakfast that hadn’t been under a warming light or in a steam tray. Fortunately, when I checked into the delightful Courtyard by Marriott Novena, the young lady at the bell desk on the ground floor told me I had to try this place. Given that it was about 20 steps from the front door, this was a no-brainer.

This was just what I needed, and more. The bagel served at 8 am was still warm from the oven and the schmears were cool and tasty. The menu told me that I was coming back, and tomorrow I’m buying for the office. Two Men Bagel House has redefined the quick breakfast in Singapore. As long as they are here, I am staying nearby.

Presentation Counts

The real art of eating at a buffet is plating your food in an appealing manner. I am biased: nothing kills my appetite faster than the sight of an overladen plate that looks like a trough into which the kitchen scraps have been dumped.

Okay, I’ll own it: this is all a bit OCD, but do us both a favor and try this next time you find yourself facing an all-you-can-eat smorgasbord:

  • Walk the whole buffet first, making your selections;
  • Then take a plate and resolve to put no more than three different foods onto it;
  • Set the food on your plate while pretending you are serving someone you want to impress.

I wager that when you get back to the table, you will eat more slowly, savor your meal, and feel better afterwards.

Morning Curling

Monday morning at 10:00am at the Marriott in Shanghai, and there is a small crowd of foreign guys sitting in the lobby bar watching a curling match on television.

I am torn between pity and envy as a shuffle into the long taxi queue and head to the office. I was never much of a curling fan, but I have of late become a great admirer of leisure.

UPDATE: took one look at the taxi queue and turned around and went back into the lobby and ordered a double espresso. I am 13 years and 4 months away from Social Security, but I am definitely too old to stand in any hotel taxi queue with more than four people ahead of me and no cabs in the rank.