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broodings from the burrow

October 27, 2019

coffeeneuring 2019 #2: kung fu tea
posted by soe 1:21 am

Ride #2: Saturday, Oct. 26, afternoon
Kung Fu Tea (1529 Wisconsin Ave., N.W., 2nd Floor)

Today’s coffeeneuring ride was not quite what I had planned, but it let me try something new, so worked out fine.

Kung Fu Tea

This week’s adventure started out with a bus ride to Cleveland Park, because I started a little later than I planned. I ran a few errands, including a trip to the library, a couple of fruitless shopping stops, and a stop in at an Italian deli/pizza shop for pizza dough and a slice for a late lunch.

Then I hopped on a bikeshare and pedaled uphill to get across to Wisconsin Avenue, which I took down to Georgetown. It was a pleasant afternoon for a bike ride — less humid than I’d expected — and I passed people out raking and many Halloween decorations in the upper-middle-class neighborhood I rode through.

Because the nearest dock to where I wanted to go was at Safeway, I stopped to buy cat food and litter. Apparently my unofficial theme for this year’s coffeeneuring is carrying heavy bags of groceries with me. For the record, this is a terrible theme.

Groceries in hand, I walked the block to the French bakery I wanted to stop at because I heard they had a seasonal pumpkin croissant I wanted to try. Unfortunately, they were sold out of said item, and I decided to carry on down the hill on foot.

Next I stopped at a new Italian pastry shop that opened up where a gelato shop used to be (the French bakery used to be a fro-yo shop), but they only had coffee-flavored drinks, which would have been appropriate to the task, but disgusting, so I pressed on another half block to a drink shop I’d been curious about for some time: Kung Fu Tea.

Kung Fu Tea

Focusing on bubble tea, Kung Fu Tea is on the second floor over a Korean restaurant. The girl at the counter was very helpful when I explained that I had never had milk tea and asked for her recommendation for a hot variety. She pointed me to the Kung Fu Milk, and I opted to skip the tapioca bubbles this time.

It seems obvious that the restaurant, one in an international chain of bubble tea shops, is aimed at Georgetown students. There was a dearth of furniture and only three food items on the menu, suggesting its clientele tends to be transient and in search of beverages, rather than sustenance. Decor was minimal with only a couple of cases honoring Bruce Lee, a couple of stylized pendant lights, and some cheerful corporate graphics on the wall.

Kung Fu Tea

But the tea was warm and sweet, and I enjoyed it as the light faded away. I walked the last couple blocks to the nearest bikeshare dock (Wisconsin and O) and headed home for the night.

Should you ride your own bike there, know the sidewalks are narrow and there is not a lot of room to lock your bike to road signs. You will have better luck locking on one of the cross streets and walking over.

Total mileage: 3.15 miles

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October 21, 2019

nearby foliage
posted by soe 1:47 am

Our fall foliage season hasn’t been great, but there are several trees in the park by my garden that looked particularly pretty this weekend:

Fall Foliage



Are the trees near you dressed to the nines for the season, or have they already put away their finery? Or, like ours, are your trees opting for a more casual look in neutrals this autumn?

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October 20, 2019

coffeeneuring 2019 #1: dua
posted by soe 2:16 am

Ride #1: Saturday, Oct. 19, afternoon
Dua (923 15th St., N.W.)


Every fall I like to take part in Mary G’s Coffeeneuring Challenge where people ride bicycles to coffeeshops or to places that serve coffee or, conversely, take coffee to places that don’t. Whatever, the important thing is bike to coffee.

I am not, however, the only person who does this bike challenge that doesn’t drink or like coffee. So there’s a rule that says we don’t have to.
(For this year’s first Coffeeneuring ride, I’m about to find out exactly how far that rule will stretch. More on that in a minute…)

I’ve been riding bikeshare for most of the past year, rather than my own bike, which does necessitate riding places that are somewhat near the docks. It also means that my rides can, like today’s be hybrids, where I ride some of it and walk (or metro) some of it. Today’s involved riding to the the dock nearest the library; walking to the library, the garden, and Trader Joe’s; riding to the coffeeshop; walking to Marshall’s and TJ Maxx; riding to Safeway; and then riding the rest of the way home.

I discovered the coffeeshop, Dua, earlier this week when I was hunting for a bike to ride home after work. I’d walked past its McPherson Square space half a dozen times since starting my new job, but never noticed it until I needed a bike from the dock in front of it. And then I knew I’d be back to Coffeeneur.


The guy at the counter was very nice and when I said I was looking for something coffee-free, he asked if I’d be in the mood for something cold. How about our cookies and cream milk shake? he asked. Sure thing! (It was ice cream, but drinkable ice cream … That totally counts, right?!)


I added a chocolate croissant to my order and headed (with my two bags full of library books and groceries) to the seating in the back. They have a handful of seats at the front window, a long subway-style, outward-facing row of seats, and then a back section with five tables, one of which is meant to be communal seating.

Both the milkshake and the croissant were very tasty.


I’ll definitely be back, but I suspect that I’m missing out on the best the shop has to offer. This is the first international outpost of a Jakarta coffeehouse, and they import their beans from Indonesia, where they know all their coffee growers. They have two Indonesian coffee specialties — one made with condensed milk and the other with coconut milk — and offer an Indonesian sweet — banana and chocolate wrapped in a spring roll wrapper. I have recommended to Rudi that he stop by, being a fan of both coffee and bananas, and I suspect he’ll have a new favorite shop once he does.


Total mileage: 3.7 miles

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October 16, 2019

posted by soe 1:48 am

In a shock to me, the Washington Nationals have eliminated the Saint Louis Cardinals in four straight games.

The Nationals have won the National League pennant.

The Nationals are heading to the World Series!

Let’s go, Nats!!!

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October 10, 2019

this is howie we do it
posted by soe 12:34 am

Sarah & Me at Nats Park

Have I ever shared here how much I hate the intentional walk? I think it’s a particularly overused action in contemporary baseball. You want to skip a batter? Pitch around him. He hits it anyway? Them’s the breaks!

It particularly grates me when it’s done to load the bases, and I don’t care how many Sabremetrics guys want to tell me that it’s a savvy move when there are no outs and a hot batter is at the plate. You intentionally walk the bases in that situation and you deserve to have a grand slam smacked against you.

Because eventually, that next batter is going to get really tired of being deemed the lesser threat. And he’s going to demonstrate that he, too, can make the clutch move. And, honestly, extra innings in the final game of a playoff series is a really great time to make such a statement.

Thanks, Howie Kendrick, for channeling all the dismissiveness the Dodgers showed you and smacking that baseball back toward the D.C. crowd who’s waiting to buy you a beer when you get home.

Let’s go, Nationals! St. Louis, we’re coming for you next!

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September 19, 2019

sunset over the wharf
posted by soe 1:35 am

Sunset at the Wharf

I realize I’m giving you a lot of light content recently and I’m sorry about that. The new job is a lot, mentally and emotionally, and I seem to spend a lot of my downtime napping. I assume I will build up a tolerance in the days to come and will be able to resume having a life. This week is already better than last in that I haven’t had to cancel all evening plans to nap instead, but simply fall asleep when I am home. So, maybe next week?

Anyway, this shot, taken yesterday evening, is from the balcony of The Anthem, one of the concert venues on the Wharf, looking out over the Washington Channel.

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