After work on Friday, I went down to Chinatown to catch the Dragon Coach bus to Washington DC. For those of you that don't know about these bus lines, there are a bunch of buslines that operate out of Chinatown and connect the various East Coast Chinatowns for a really, really low rate - $35 round trip from NYC to DC, for instance. Hard to argue with that, when Amtrak charges $178 for a round-trip (assuming you ride coach) and even Greyhound charges $79 for a round-trip.
Anyways, I got there at 5:30, with plenty of time to get on the 6 pm bus and get a decent seat. Except, well, it wasn't there. A competing bus-line had their NYC -> DC bus there, as a woman loudly proclaimed ("DC DC DC! WA-SHIN-TON DC! GO NOW! DC DC DC!"). The Dragon Coach representative told her to shut up, semi-good-naturedly, and they argued amiably in Chinese. (To paraphrase, mostly since I barely understand any Chinese: "Our bus is here, when's yours coming?" "It's coming, shut up!") Finally, at 6:30 pm, the 6 pm bus showed up and we all piled in and took off. The bus ride down was fairly uneventful, other than the smell - apparently not only was this bus late, it also hadn't had its bathroom cleaned in a long, long while. Every time someone opened the door to go in, the smell wafted back throughout the entire rear half of the bus. Mmm mmm good.
After arriving in DC, my cousin and I ate some food - not surprising, considering who we are. We regretted not getting any crab after multiple tables ordered crab and 4 or 5 nice, big, struggling, live crabs were walked past our table. They looked good. Damn them.
The next morning we woke up nice and early (no later than 10 am!) and went and got lunch and walked around in some frou-frou market area whose name I can't remember, and then went to the Spy Museum. We found out the hard way that the Spy Museum sells tickets for specific times, and they sell out quickly. Thwarted at our attempt to see the museum, we went and watched Chicago at a nearby Loew's, instead.
A few quick impressions from the movie:
- It was good.
- Catherine Zeta-Jones is hot.
- Renee Zellweger is not.
- Queen Latifah has huge tracts of land.
After the movie, we walked around Georgetown, and then went to dinner at the Dancing Crab, where we ate a lot of crab. Mmmm.
Over two hours of eating later, we went to the Afterwords Cafe (at Kramerbooks, a really cool idea - a bookstore with a bar/cafe/restaurant in it - sort of like a lot of places are doing, but with a real restaurant and bar, and a real bookstore) for dessert. It was a bit disappointing, honestly - good idea, but so-so execution. The desserts were big and very good, but the drink (a hot chocolate w/ mint liqeur) was watery and the service was a mixed-bag (our waitress was incredibly polite, but the hostess took our name for a table and then crossed us off a little while later without giving us a table; the manager told us that the hard cider was not available in the $15 pitcher even though it was clearly in the same section with the other beers and beer-alikes that were pitcherable). The bathroom was pretty nasty, too. Still, I can't deny that my pecan pie was very good and very massive, easily large enough for 2 people to share under most circumstances.
We went back home after that, and watched SNL (w/ Queen Latifah, she of the huge tracts of land) and then watched High Fidelity on dvd. Ok, but disappointing overall - it was way too similar to Say Anything, and not as good. Lisa Bonet was hot, I haven't seen her since the Cosby Show. The movie felt like it was more of a rough draft than a finished product - too many jokes and situations fell short of their potential, and even worse the main character and the girl he eventually wins (back) were mostly unappealing. It's hard to get into a (romantic) comedy if you don't really like the two participants much. Jack Black was very amusing in his Jack Blackian way.
The next morning we got up, got dim sum in Chinatown, and then I headed back to NYC via the bus (which was waiting when I got there and left on time, woohoo!). The ride was uneventful, albeit long - lots of traffic. I was mildly amazed at how pretty some of the scenery along the way was - I had forgotten that there are some really nice places in NJ (and PA and Delaware) despite my general loathing for them.
My dad drove into the city with the kids to meet me and picked me up, and I took them all out to a nice dinner at Ping's. It was pretty good - certainly better than the 6.2 rating it got on Citysearch, although not fantastic.
Anyways, that's about it. I had a lot of food this weekend, so my belly's nice and happy, and I had a really nice time hanging out with my cousin (whose husband will soon be here* and so who will no longer be available to hang out in the same way anymore - kinda disappointing, I've grown really fond of these little hang-out weekends we've been having from time to time. Still, I'm really happy for her and him - finally together after all these months apart!).
Anyhoo, I'm exhausted and going to bed. Hope you all had an equally good weekend!
* - Long story involving a visa (immigration-style, not credit-style), lots of red tape and stupidity, and long periods apart.