Somebody mentioned that the hotel had a nice gym. It was pretty late that night when we came from the restaurant, but I didn’t want to go to bed right away. My roommate and I decided to check out the gym, and I invited Sandy with us. But she went straight to the elevator and waved at us.
“I’m too tired. I’m going to my room.”
We took a tour of the hotel under the professional eyes of the hotel receptionists and visited the gym. One of our team members was there already. My body was tired, but my mind was still alert from being on this side of the world. A little later, I decided to go to bed and try to get as much rest as possible.
My brain calmed down in no time and I slept like a rock. Early next morning I looked out the window at the street’s dazzling movement and prayed. I knew we were in a world where the masses were more valued than the individuals. If one falls, he or she is immediately replaced with somebody else. Tears don’t count. Suffering, need and struggle are at home.
And that was why, when I went downstairs to the restaurant for breakfast, that grandeur and abundance took my breath away. The immense chandeliers immersed the huge space in brightness. I was like in a ballroom. The variety of food was overwhelming, and only a few feet away, there was a river of population who had a bowl of rice before going to work.
Ah, that reminded me of Romania under the communism where I grew up. Hard times.
My friends came in one by one, and stopped in awe for a few moments to take in the opulence.
“Did you see Sandy?” I asked a few of them.
We sat at the tables and chatted full of joy, overwhelmed by God’s favor to be in that country.
Minutes before our call time, I went to my room to get a few things for the day. We were heading to our first meeting to follow the plan for the day. When I got out of the elevator, a few of my friends were in the lobby already, waiting. The Chinese interpreters were there, as well.
“Did anybody see Sandy this morning?” our leader asked.
We raised our shoulders.
“Do you know if she had breakfast?”
“She might be still sleeping,” one of us said. “Let me go and knock at her door.”
Somebody asked the reception to call Sandy’s room, but nobody answered.
Then we started to pray.
Two or three of our leaders and one the hotel’s representative went to open her door from outside.
Mission accomplished, her heart couldn’t hold so much excitement. And as she was there cold, she was dancing in Heavens with the angels.
That was our first morning in China.
-to be continued-
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