Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Wicked Night Out

My husband and I went to go see Wicked at the Orpheum Theatre in San Francisco on Saturday night.  It was a totally last-minute decision -- decided to go on Friday afternoon, secured babysitting on Friday evening (thanks, R & G!), and bought tickets 20 hours before curtain.

Earlier on Saturday, we went for a bike ride, and so we basically had about an hour to get ready to go out.  We had no idea where we'd eat for dinner; we figured we'll just look around once we get there. We got to the city around 6:15pm, and finally after walking around for what seemed like an eternity (it probably was only about 20 minutes, but I was on heels and I never wear heels), we found a little Thai restaurant.  Yum.  After a leisurely dinner we got to the theatre with about 15 minutes to spare, and we found our seats.  Perfect.

It turns out that we had pretty much the best seats in the house. We sat in row J, seats 101 and 103.  That's ten rows from the stage, the two seats just left of the center aisle.  We were within spitting distance of the singers -- we could practically count their teeth.

Once we got settled into our seats, I flipped through the program to look for familiar names, particularly in the orchestra pit.  It turns out that the violinist was a guy that I knew from my Youth Orchestra and college days.  My first year at SFSYO, I was sitting in the back of the second violins, while he was the principal second violinist. The next year, he was concertmaster.  After Youth Orchestra, we both ended up in the same university, majoring in music.  Of course he practiced much more than I ever did, so his music career flourished, while mine, not so much.  I'd like to say it's on hold for now.

Anyways, I went to the orchestra pit and looked around.  It was neat to see how the pit was so much more roomy than any pit that I'd ever played in.  I found the violinist and said hi, and he said to meet him at the stage entrance after the show.  Soon afterwards, the show began, and we thoroughly enjoyed the show.  We had watched The Wizard of Oz in June at a local movie theatre (free noon movies during the summertime!), so the story was still fresh in our memory.  It was neat to see the familiar story from a different perspective.

After the show, we went to the stage entrance and the three of us went out for a quick drink.  It was neat to hear his adventures after college and to see what he's up to now.  It's neat to see that he's a successful musician, enjoying what he does, and not struggling or starving.

It was a good day.   Good family bonding time in the morning and afternoon, and then a good night out:  good food (eaten hot!  Without kids!  No potty breaks!), good show (no potty breaks!  No incessant questions!), and good meeting an old friend.

I hope to do it again soon.  Who knows when though.  Hopefully sooner than later.

Family Bike Day

We bought a bike trailer a couple of weeks ago off of Craigslist, and we took it for a 22-mile spin yesterday.  We had a three-family, six-adult, six-child, three-trailer outing.  We met at a friend's house just past 10am, and rode up the Iron Horse Trail to Danville, a little town about 11 miles away, to have lunch at a little restaurant called Chow.  Then we rode back, returning to their house around 3pm, and got home.

It was quite an adventure.  My husband managed to load our two bikes plus the new trailer (which we discovered isn't collapsible) into the minivan, which is a feat in itself.  Once we arrived at the starting point, it took a good amount of time to get everything set up and ready to go.  We finally got going (my husband pulled the trailer with both kids in it), but had to stop quite a few times along the way due to certain events including screaming children, a flat tire, and a wheel that fell off (these were all separate events).  Thankfully nobody got hurt anywhere, and the return trip was uneventful.  We returned sweaty, happy, and safely.  And the kids who needed it napped in the trailer.  Bonus!

Once we got back, all twelve of us had some ice cold water (Coke for those who wanted it) and popsicles as a reward.

Unfortunately I didn't think to bring a camera.  Sorry.  You'll just have to take my word for it that I actually voluntarily made myself sweat.