Power breakfast

CEOs have their executive breakfasts at the Hyatt or Shangri La in gleaming skyscrapers.

The ordinary construction worker has his by the side of the road amidst the cacophony of honking cars, the hissing of portable gas stoves and the cackling of dough in oil.

Call it al fresco dining under a canopy of light road dust.

What to eat? With some monetary shrapnel, I could have soybean milk or red bean soup. Perhaps pair it with some friend dough sticks or a hot piece of shaobing or flatbread.

I opted for a nice diluted omelet on thin dough and some barley water, and settled in with the gentlemen above. One even generously gave up his good chair for me.

Ladylike bites wouldn’t do in a place like this. The words gobble or scarf come to mind. After all, there were many things to do besides breakfast and time was of the essence. Catch up over small chit-chat, a cigarette break or even some light shopping of displayed wares ranging from towels, shoes and clothes.

The hustle and bustle was efficient and its flow quick. With the last of the construction workers headed to the sites, the street hawkers disassembled as quickly as they had set up, leaving a trail of litter that will be cleaned up, probably for the lunch shift.

October 2009


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