This student is amazed by the fancy dinner she was able to enjoy with her classmates at the Marriott. She describes with detail the decorations, the food they were served, and even the soft paper towel in the bathrooms. When the millionaire John Tu sits at her table and wants to let the students talk, she is amazed that he is actually paying attention to her, when no one else in her life ever seems to. She feels that John Tu treated her better during this dinner than her dad ever has in her entire life. When she returns home, she realizes that she feels something lacking from her life, more important than any material thing: love and care from her dad.
While the student is amazed by the material riches and refinement displayed at the Marriott, she ultimately realizes that this is not what has truly made her evening enjoyable. Rather, what she appreciated most was feeling listened to. This demonstrates the intense need children have for adults to hear and respect them, and the important responsibility that adults have toward children. Throughout the book, many students express a similar sense of being abandoned by adults.