We went to Chinatown this afternoon to enjoy the Chinese New Year celebrations. In the beautiful, high-ceilinged Union Station main hall there was a stage set up, with about 500 people milling around and lots of little booths selling trinkets and advertising local organizations. I picked up a jade dragon bracelet (I'm unable to accept my heritage as a "sheep") and some Year of the Monkey stamps while I was there, and we watched the cutest group of girls do a Korean drumming dance. I found it strange to see them dressed so prettily and beating on drums - and occasionally jumping in the air - but it all seemed to work pretty well. After that we got the $3 plate lunch being dished out in the back by the Chinatown BIA. It was truly incredible: drunken chicken, Philipino noodles, Vietnamese sandwich, Thai chicken, tasty rice, a tiny piece of cake, grapes, and an orange all crammed on one plate. After we polished off our food we headed out, hoping to find a lion dance going on (since we could hear the firecrackers going off as early as 11 AM from our house), and to our delight one was just starting at Hon's, the divey restaurant just across the street. I wonder if the customers were surprised to see two lion dancers suddenly parading through the restaurant as they ate their lunch? I was jumping up and down and clapping, just as excited as the little kids who had got the lucky candy the lions tossed around before the firecrackers went off. It was a great afternoon.