Early morning breakfast in the hotel. . .
'How are you today?' she asks.
'Ok—half asleep,' I answer, gulping down my tea in order to reply.
'You should say—I am beautiful—then you will feel good too.
'Ok,' I mumble. Then returning the sentiment, I ask: 'So . . . how are you?'
'Beautiful!' she says, with a sly smile over her shoulder—as she goes to relieve a table of its dirty crockery—from the other side of the marble-floored, dining room.