Friday, January 29, 2010

Baked beans

One of the odd things that shows up in the hotel breakfast buffet at an American style hotel in Suzhou, is baked beans. I’ve seen it each morning but noticed nobody eating it. After a week, I finally had to ask why they stocked it. The restaurant manager explained that it is a favorite food of Texans. Apparently, a lot of Texans had visited at one time, but were not as prevalent as they had been in the past. I happen to know a few of these Texans, they work in another division of my company.

I asked if the beans were a popular buffet item. The restaurants manager explained that they were a slow moving item. At most, only one or two guests tried the beans each day. I explained that baked beans are not a normal breakfast food in America. In fact, I explained, they are typically a picnic lunch item reserved for summer barbeques. The manager asked for a reference. I was happy to point out a few.

The next day she asked why Texans like beans for breakfast. It was obvious I had not made my point the previous day. I explained that Texans  are “full of beans, and only half-baked at best.”  She left to look up the references. she came back laughing. “Texans are like people from Hong Kong, a bit odd.”

“Exactly!” I replied.

There were no baked beans for breakfast the next morning.

A few days later a friend told me baked beans were quite popular in China as a cheap tasty breakfast meal. I don’t get it.

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