I've had a lot of wonderful days in New York, but most of the highlights have been on the weekends when I have time to play. But today was one of the best weekdays I've had since coming to the city. It started with a bit of good luck when I joined some friends for the Wicked lottery after work. If you recall, I very recently won front-row tickets to the show (see Day 69: The Musical), so I wasn't planning to watch again but went only to increase my friends' odds by adding one more entry to the mix. While my name was not drawn, my friend Mei Ling, who accompanied me to the showing two weeks ago and loved the musical so much she wanted to see it again, scored her first win! Unfortunately, there were five people interested in going, but we only received two tickets, so we had to split up the group based on our own private lottery to fairly decide who got to watch.
While the lucky winners were waiting for the show to start, we first grabbed dinner at Uncle Mario's Brick Oven Pizza, which opened just last month in Hell's Kitchen. We ordered two very different but equally delicious pizzas: one with buffalo chicken and blue cheese, and the other with prosciutto and arugula. Afterward we split up, with the theater goers heading to their show, and the rest of us hitting up the bars. Following a brief detour to Sam Ash, a music emporium near Times Square, to allow Clarence to ogle the guitars, we chilled at Virgil's Real Barbecue over some tasty cocktails, followed by beers at Whiskey Trader, which is one of my favorite bars, thanks to the lounge-like atmosphere, cheap drinks, and complimentary popcorn (see Day 26: The Sugar Rush). While the libations were good, the best part was hanging out with awesome people and talking about life with in an open and authentic way.
We waited until our friends were done with their show, then met up for second dinner, even though most of us were stuffed. Our destination was Dallas BBQ in Times Square. I split an order roast chicken, which was pretty tasty, but after sampling their less-than-stellar barbecue sauce, I now understand how spoiled I am as a native Texan when it comes to barbecue. In all, it was a fantastic evening with filled with simple, ordinary activities elevated to the status of greatness through the quality of the company and conversation.
|Mei Ling won the Broadway tickets her second time ever at the lottery!|
|Mei Ling in line to buy tickets for "a cultural phenomenon."|
|Mei Ling in the Wicked winners' line.|
|Pizza with chicken, buffalo sauce, and blue cheese from the brand new Uncle Mario's Brick Oven Pizza in Hell's Kitchen.|
|Arugula and prosciutto pizza from Uncle Mario's Brick Oven Pizza. Almost looks healthy, don't it?|
|Clarence trying out a coveted Taylor at Sam Ash.|
|Jamming on the guitars at Sam Ash.|