I kicked off to see Spirited Away about 5:00. I was bored at home, hungry, and only partially sure of where Shirlington was. As it turned out, I found it in one shot. It's the same theatre I had seen Dancer In The Dark. (Ah, back when I was dating Heather.)
I took GW Parkway to 395 south. Interestingly, I passed the repaired side of the Pentagon. That is a much prettier building when it is clean. The rubber-necker in me wished that the gaping hole was still there. As it stand, this was the first time I've seen the Pentagon in over a year.
I arrived in Shirlington about 5:30 and bought my ticket first thing. I know this theatre and I know about Saturday nights. On a Friday or Saturday date, you buy the theatre tickets FIRST, then go to dinner. I learned that the hard way. Same rules apply if you have no date. Shirlington is a wayyy busy theatre, so double the caution.
To kill time, I dropped off at the Spanish place across the street and ate dinner at the bar. I had some stuffed peppers and some Spanish meatballs. Yum. I considered a beer, but I wanted to sit through the entire film, not get up.
I kept a lookout for my friends, because they were the ones who planned all this. They never showed up. As it turns out, kittykatya saw me going into the theatre. When they got through the ticket line, they were sold out. That was about 6:30. (This means that I successfully made my Area Knowledge roll and would have impressed my date).
The print was pristine. I noticed no film glitches nor other film abuse. I did find myself wishing for a better sub-woofer, as the bottom end of the sounds system was not as full as I liked. The mid- and high- ranges were clear, though. I appreciated the soundtrack much better when I could hear Joe's Hisaishi's piano work.
The theatre was packed full. There was quite a good showing of children for the show, and most of them stayed quiet for the whole thing. About 1/2 the audience stayed for the closing credits.
I was expecting a dub, but instead they were showing the subtitled version.
When I left, I took the back way home. I was only partially sure of where things went. Once I got moving, all that experience dating Heather kicked back in. I wound over to Ballston, then took 66.