Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Seen in the food court

Scene in the food court of the big hotel next door that I will not name here – oh, in the upstairs food court, because this hotel is so big that it has two, the upstairs one with the ‘cheap’ restaurants and food and one downstairs with the fancier places. The upstairs food court is filled with some of the ‘standard’ places that most people associate with food courts, except the prices are about twice what you would pay in a mall because of the high rent here. These are in addition to the two dozen or so fancy places to eat scattered around.

Back to Monday: we were upstairs having a Nathan’s hot dog the other day (employees get half price discounts at some of the places on some of the days, Nathan’s is Monday and I like their hot dogs with sauerkraut and fries) and sitting eating watching people. That’s the fun part of Vegas, watching all of the people. A few tables over was an older Japanese gentleman, wearing a black suit and white shirt without a tie. What made me notice him was the younger man kneeling at the end of the table. Yes, kneeling on the floor in the food court. We could not hear the conversation, but it was probably in Japanese anyway and I don’t understand anything other than English.

But the younger man was nodding and bowing (bowing while kneeling, kind of hard) as the older man apparently was disturbed about something. The older man was waving his hands and did not appear pleased with his minion. Didn’t know they still had minions that knelt and bowed in Japan, but it looks like they still do. At one point the younger man said a few things, met with more hand waving and frowns from the older man. Eventually the younger man nodded his head several times and partially stood up, taking a manila folder from a briefcase on the table in front of him. He started to pull a page from the folder and the older man got much louder and more animated. The younger one bowed a few times, put the paper away, and knelt again.

After a few more minutes of this one sided conversation the young man got to his feet and put the folder into the briefcase. He then backed away, bowing as he went, and after a few feet he turned and scurried off. I’ve heard the term ‘scurried off’ but this was the first time that it really looked like that.

The older man then leaned back against the pillar behind him. A few minutes later a young Japanese girl in a red sweater came by and leaned over the table and talked to the older man. This was not a conversation of servant to host as the last one was, and from the girl’s age and appearance I assumed it to be the daughter. (older men like these go for the tall blond American women, who would probably also be on her knees, but not bowing, at least not in the food court). She walked away and a few minutes later we noticed her and the first guy over in the Nathan’s line. They talked for a few minutes, and the guy scurried off down the hall away from the food court.

I have no idea what the discussion was, but it has provided a topic of conversation and some amusement here in the office. Also wondered why the older man was holding court in a food court instead of one of the fancy restaurants. Go ahead and make up your own conversation to fit this situation if you like.

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