So long to all that

One last photo at 5:30am as I head out of the room for my flight home. It kills me to waste perfectly good food, but none of this is on my nutrition program. There are more carbs on this table than in my full day’s allocation.

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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.

Preflight breakfast

I arrive at LAX for my flight to Shanghai fresh from the campout with the troop. I am drained and starving, and I am not on my normal flight, so my rhythm is off even before I step out into the airport.

The big downside of United 32 versus ANA 5 is that the former takes off several hours earlier, meaning that breakfast is in the lounge, or nowhere. Despite the very nice spread United lays out in their new LAX lounge, there was nothing there that matched my nutrition program and my Kosher-style sensibilities apart from some lovely ice water. So I tossed in a Quest bar and called it a meal.

I spent the first half of my adult life becoming more open minded about food. Alas, my physical and spiritual health have made me rather more high-maintenance that I would prefer. I find myself making an alarming number of special requests in restaurants and apologizing to friends, colleagues, travel agents, and servers.

It’s all andropausal OCD.

But I’ll own it.

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.