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Chinese breakfast

My hotel had a morning, buffet breakfast. The “daily egg special” was the same thing every day—fried eggs. I’m not a big fried egg fan to begin with, and the way the hotel cooked them (super runny yolks and crispy/browned/blackened whites) pushed me towards other choices every morning. But authentic Chinese food, most of the time I didn’t even know what I was eating, three meals a day for two weeks can be a bit much. So I tried explaining to the cook that I would like a scrambled egg. The result was a fried egg. The next day a different cook was doing the fried eggs so I explained to her what I was hoping for. She assured me that scrambled eggs would be coming my way. What did I get? Another fried egg.

Finally, I used Google Translate to look up the Chinese characters for scrambled egg, wrote them down, and handed the paper over to the cook. Perfect scrambled eggs were the result. Yeah!

The Chinese people sitting at my table (and the tables around mine) looked at my scrambled eggs like I was crazy. It was a look I became all too familiar with, but the scrambled eggs were fantastic.

Notice the ash trays (four per table) in the above photo. The buffet went from 7 – 9 a.m. I soon learned that I needed to get there right at 7 and be done eating by 7:15 to avoid much of the smoking. By 8 the room was filled with smoke.

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