We followed the meal up with wandering through Chinatown, stopping in whichever stores caught our eye. Amy was in search of cheap fans - paper and wooden. She had three she got when we were in San Francisco in 1996 and they have been loved nearly to death. At one time while stuck in a hideously long airport security line she was offered $20, and then bid up to $30, for her $1 fan (she did not sell). Today's goal was 3 or 4 more fans. In the course of our travels we found the fans (top price was $.79 for the paper ones) and a few other trinkets.
The surprise of the day was hearing a voice say "I know you from Watertown". We turned around to discover our old pal, Dana, standing on the sidewalk next to us. Neither of us had recognized him, but he recognized me. We were all active in GLOW (Gays and Lesbians of Watertown) which was a neighborhood potluck group centered in Watertown, Massachusetts back in the late 80s and early 90s. The funny part is he still lives in Massachusetts, though it's been years since we saw him.
Chinese New Year was a few weeks ago and the celebrations are continuing. While we were in Chinatown our attention was captured by the sound of drums and firecrackers. Two different troops of boys/young men were parading through the streets with a lion each. Every few stores they would stop while the lion danced and bowed before the store then entered briefly. Before moving on a string of fireworks would be set off. Each troop included several bright flags as well.
With our goals satisfied we head back toward the hotel. We stopped briefly in Union Square to rest our legs and have a drink of water, and made a brief stop on Maiden Lane to check out the Frank Lloyd Wright building there. As soon as we entered the lane I knew which building it was. It is distinctly a Wright design, not to mention that it stands out among the more traditional buildings on that block.
After a quick stop at Citizen Cupcake for a treat we headed back to our room for a short break. I decided that icing my knee was in order (all the walking has made it quite sore) and ended up falling asleep. After a short nap I was quite refreshed. Amy was reading and really didn't mind the break either.
Our evening entertainment included a trolley ride to the Castro. We walked around to soak in the atmosphere, which was loud, slightly raucous and primarily male, stopping into a few shops along the way, including the HRC store. (For those who may not know the Human Rights Campaign is an organization the works for LGBT rights. It was founded in 1980 to counter the efforts of the Moral Majority.) We then headed to Catch for dinner. Dinner was superb. The flavors in each item blended perfectly, Amy's crab appetizer was particularly well balanced. Portions were reasonably sized, the ambiance was pleasant and the service was attentive without being intrusive.