We got a taxi fairly quickly and en route to the restaurant, I shared with Miles that we were going to eat at a Mongolian BBQ restaurant. Miles looked at me and asked, "Is it similar to a Korean BBQ?" I replied, "Not really." Miles then replied, "I'm so glad Addy (Miles' friend Atticus) took me to that Korean BBQ in our neighborhood because I love it!" Miles then paused, thoughtfully pondered and said, "Dad, I'm pretty international. I went to a Korean BBQ for my birthday and I'm going to a Mongolian BBQ tonight." What struck me about Miles' statement was that he didn't say it with a trace of hubris or arrogance. He said it as a 10 year old experiencing a lightbulb moment, it was cool to see his face and the 'lightbulb' turn on as he said it. It was as if something had finally occurred to him. So, of course, I went into counselor mode :). I asked Miles, "So how do you feel about this [Living internationally]?" Miles replied, "It's pretty cool, but there's pros and cons. "Tell me about them," I asked.
Miles carried the conversation. I just listened and asked questions. It was interesting sitting back and hearing what Miles had to say, his 10 year old observations.
Miles: "Ok, Dad. Travel, I love to travel, but many people can't or won't travel to see us because it's either too far, too expensive, or people don't think it's safe. But Dad, I feel safe overseas. I think being overseas maybe safer than being in the U.S?"
Miles: "Many people move away. We get settled and others move. That stinks!"
Miles: "Costs. Some things overseas are a lot more expensive, like clothes sometimes. But, some food things are cheaper overseas like mangoes and certain types of fruit. But, some food items are cheaper in the U.S. More variety in the U.S."
We arrived at the restaurant. It was a Monday night and the restaurant was packed! We had to wait and as we were waiting the conversation continued.
Miles: "Languages. Dad, you hear all the different languages at the restaurant? British English, German, Hindi, Mandarin. Languages can be a pro and con. Hearing and learning new languages are cool. A con is not knowing a language when people are speaking it to you. Learning a new language is tough and it takes time."
As we were in line preparing our bowls, there was a German flight crew who worked for Lufthansa in front of us and some of the flight attendants struck up a conversation with us, asking us, "Where are you from?' 'What brought you to Hong Kong?' A friendly group. Hence, all the German that was being spoken in the restaurant that evening.
|The ice cream shop|
After the restaurant, we had dessert at a very tasty ice cream shop.
As we hailed a taxi to take us back to our hotel, Miles looked at me in the back of the taxi and said, "Dad, tonight was pretty cool." I just smiled and replied, "Yes, it was."
|Miles and I having a "cool" dinner.|