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"I don't think we'll be clean until we're back at the Hilton"

December 4, 2002
Bangkok, Thailand

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At 6am, the breakfast buffet is fully staffed by smiling chefs and hostesses who welcome the first bleary-eyed, jetlagged travellers into the grand hall, with its 50-foot ceilings and glass wall overlooking the pool's tropical garden. They drop their copy of the Bangkok Post on a table to save it then wander over to the tables lining the stairway. Over on the right, a traditional European breakfast with hard roll, coldcuts, thin slices of cheese, and jam. Here's the American food in the middle: bacon, omelettes made to order, pancakes and french toast, waffles, and an eggs-benedict sandwich that looks a little like an Egg McMuffin. Japanese breakfast next, with rice, seafood, and miso soup if you like, and beyond the Chinese and Thai dishes, included noodles and dumplings. Or do like the daughters and fill your plate with donuts and croissants from the pastry table. If you're still paying for yesterday's breakfast, over here are large silos filled with different cereals, next to the variety of fruit juices.