I went down to the lobby, and was directed to the Peony room. I thought at first I must have stumbled into a private room for a group tour, since there were many group tables. After verifying that yes, I was in the correct place (verifying means the hostess and I look confusedly at one another, I show my room key and she points back to the same room) I looked and discerned that everyone sitting as a group didn’t necessarily know one another. I sat near another family after making the international wave the hand at the empty chair, is this chair free sign. Found the coffee. Then began to explore the buffet.
How do I describe this? It had all the breakfast food in the world. American breakfast, which had some tiny hot dogs in tiny buns as a feature, English breakfast, and Chinese breakfast, which looked a lot like dinner. I’m a daring eater, and I will try a lot of stuff, but I wasn’t ready for broccoli and soup for breakfast. Maybe by Tuesday. I did have some sweet potato and a spring roll, along with my egg and sausage. I also got some yogurt, but I had a difficult time punching the straw through the top, as I saw others do. There were no spoons. Only chopsticks. A discussion on that later!
I worked on my presentation in the morning, and then Li came and we had lunch and then went to an area of older Beijing and went through a popular hutong (alley) with various foods. I got another yogurt (again with the straw through the lid) and some other milk based ice with mango. It was very crowded and there was lots to see!
Back in the hotel I napped and enjoyed a drama about Chairman Mao, helpfully subtitled in English. Now ready for bed after a few more hours work on my presentation. I’ve come to the conclusion the only thing harder that teaching is talking about teaching. Glad the presentation is tomorrow and I can get on with it!