She got a short nap then we got ready and headed to the meet&greet for the festival at Pirate's Alley. Pirates' Alley serves a drink they call absinthe, which is actually Pernod with the sugar cube/spoon/flame modern Czech ritual. Fancy, but doesn't make it taste much better - Pernod is still too anise-flavored and like drinking licorice.
Meet&greet was generally great: saw a lot of friends & aquaintances from last year. The title here was a toast from the evening. Took new acquaintances V. & J. to Lucky Cheng's, which we'd loved eating at last year- in short the place is Asian-Creole fusion cuisine, with the added hook all the waitstaff are drag queens (yes, there's a sister restaurant in NYC, why do you ask?). The lounge area was great, the company and conversation was great, but the dinner was difficult. Some disaster in the kitchen caused meals to be held up a bit over two hours so we had to skip dessert. Aggh. Their signature dessert is huge and we didn't order it last year because it was just the two of us. She was feeling a bit worse so we went back to the hotel instead of going to the Shim Sham for the live show (Genitorturers, Carla [as in Anton] LaVey, and others) or the Crow Bar (DJ Jack Dean from LA, where I actually wanted to go).