Blog # 212 I talked about how the Gel for Fitzwell idea is born. In this blog I want to talk about Rule number one don’t ask what you’re eating.
You may have heard of the saying “What happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas”. In China we had another saying “rule number one Don’t ask what you’re eating”. The Haiyatt hotel had some great restaurants. There were three great places to eat. Italian, Chinese or the Teppanyaki grill. The Italian place was also where we had our amazing breakfasts in the morning. It was a huge buffet that is still one of my favorites ever.
When we were out travelling, we usually stopped at McDonalds because it was a safe choice. The menus were close to what we had back in the states too with a few regional choices.
Richard decided to take us to a regional restaurant one afternoon. He said it would ban adventure. We get to the restaurant and in the lobby, there were several aquariums with fish, snakes and other sea creatures. We all looked at each other a little funny. “Pick your entry” they said. Fred asked Richard to pick a few different items for the table.
They took the group to a private area, and we had our own room. The first entry arrives and there was steamed vegetables with what appeared to be snakeskin mixed in. “Rule number one” Richard paused…” Don’t ask what you are eating”. It stuck; this was to be our mantra for many years.
The rest of the courses came, and when the snake meat arrived, it was deep fried and spiced up. It actually was really good, which surprised me. Everyone was good at trying the food. Even Rob had some of the snakeskin.
The food is unique also. You don’t usually see American Favorites like Kung Pao chicken or Broccoli beef. Richard ordered everything as it was all in Mandarin. There were pictures but we could read the descriptions. All the food was really delicious.
As we started to leave, we were going down the street and we took a head count, “We are short one person” I yelled out. The van stopped and sure enough Richard was walking to the van waving his arms. “You can’t leave the tour guide” he laughed. “Don’t feed them snake next time” I quipped. We all laughed. It was a great experience and became somewhat of a thing to try different types of food every time we came to China.
I’ve had so many different things over the years, Turtle feet, Pidgeon brains, duck tongue, goose intestines, Chicken feet and the list goes on and on. With this you needed to make sure your guts were good, or you could have problems. I usually took a probiotic when I travelled which helped me.
The hotels had American style toilets but when you were out and about you had a hole style toilet as the main choice, which could present problems if you were having issues. It didn’t stop me from trying different types of food though as it was part of the China experience as Richard coined it.
He had a few other rules too. Rule number 2 don’t drink the water. Rule number 3 don’t order drinks with Ice (ties in with rule number 2). Anything they may spray with water you avoided.
If the food was cooked it was okay but otherwise you had to be careful. China usually undercooked the meat too, so you had to check before you bit into it. Even brushing your teeth, I did it with bottled water to be safe. I used to have a habit of drinking the water as I showered but China cured that habit too.
The wine choices weren’t that great, hard liquor without ice wasn’t my style, so I usually stuck with beer. If you did a shot of vodka or other types, it was okay which Fred liked anyways. I tried to have different types of beer they would offer, to get some variety.
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…just sharing my story and tips from my footwear career.
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