One of the reasons I love living in the city is so I can walk to most of my necessary and pleasurable destinations.
So with my car in the shop for two full days, I've been walking everywhere while I'm car-less.
Every time I take my car into my mechanic Curtis, he reminds me what great cars Nissan Altimas are.
He says they're well-built and reliable and I shouldn't begrudge my 9 1/2 -year old vehicle with 119,000 miles on it the occasional mechanical malfunction.
But when the car's needs are being addressed and it's friggin' freezing (or more accurately, below friggin' freezing) I am naturally more inclined to choose a nearby restaurant, the sooner to get to the warmth.
Of course, seeing a couple in shorts out jogging on my way over sent an additional chill through my body, but, hey, more power to them and their frigid little bodies.
All this is just a prelude as to why I ended up at 27 for dinner yet again.
The fact is, the food never disappointments, the staff knows me all too well and there are almost always other bar sitters for companionship during my meal.
It's hard to resist soup in this weather and the Three Bean with Chorizo was everything I could hope for in a large bowl.
Add to that the crusty bread and red pepper dipping oil and I was a happy camper and quite full afterwards.
I used my Malbec/Shiraz blend to bridge the gap until I was ready for dessert. After much deliberation, I ordered the mixed berries served in a chocolate cup with Zabaglione.
I've loved this dessert since first having it at Amici back in the 90s.
Truly, I wanted to lick the plate (but restrained myself).
The entire staff was hungover from Chef Carlos' birthday party the night before and looked it.
I was thrilled to hear the restaurant's soundtrack had finally changed with the addition of four Beatles compilations, replacing the ancient mix that the staff and I had long ago memorized.
Love, love me do.
One of the servers rushed over to tell me that he was waiting on a couple of gay lobbyists on the other side who, when asked what they wanted for dessert, replied, "The chocolate gelato and the raspberry sorbet.
And you and the bartender on top of our table." I think there should be an extra charge for that.
Coincidentally, the bar diner two stools down had already brought up the topic of RVA's gay bar scene and its weaknesses.
He expressed a desire for the day when there is no distinction between bars based on sexuality.
It's a lofty goal, but I hope he doesn't hold his breath.
You must admit, a person doesn't need a car with such terrific food and entertainment value within a short chilly walk.
And I'm not foolish enough to wear shorts to get there, either.