fortunately, i didn't have much planned for today so it didn't really matter that i woke up so late. i had thought about running on this 40 degrees saturday afternoon, but by the time i decided i should start thinking about getting changed, i had to go see an open house at 5pm.
this first floor apartment in cambridge isn't out on the market yet, but i was able to see it because the owner of the house were friends of my parents. the people who lived there were out (the landlord of course had keys to the place), and from the looks of things, they were three party guys of latin american descent who weren't into this whole "cleaning up" nonsense. it was a total guys 'apartment, ashtray in every room, posters and wall decoration in homage to drinking, soccer, or anything else stereotypically guyish, animal print bedsheets and matching covers, magazines of scantily clad women festooning the leather living room sofa and coffee table, deodorant sticks, loose change on the floor, crumpled receipts, cigarette lighters. it didn't instill in me a feeling of, "oh, this place has potential" but instead i couldn't wait to get out of this testosterone lair.
at sunset i climbed to the top of the belmont reservoir (actually the cambridge reservoir, why it's doing in belmont, only the historians know) and tried to spot comet ikeya-zhang out on the western horizon and maybe take a few photos but i couldn't locate it. it was windy (cold windy too, my hands were frozen on the pair of binoculars i was clutching), there were clouds, and i couldn't be absolutely sure of the constellations i was trying to identify in order to determine where i should be looking to see the magnitude 3.5 comet.
after eating some delivered pizza, i went with my parents to my godmother's apartment where she was have a party for some "little friends," which is a euphemism for her son jack and his cohorts. i didn't want to go, and i even called to cancel, but my godmother kept on insisting so i felt obligated to make at least a brief showing. visiting them was lillian guo, the older sister of their next door neighbor friend back in taipei. i had met her when she was a glasses wearing nerd studying english in middle school back in the summer of 1993-1994 when i lived at my godparents' house while studying chinese. i translated parts of huckleberry finn for her (her required reading at the time), a living breathing english language decoder. now, 8 years later, it's kind of weird seeing her again. "do you remember me?" she asked, "do you notice anything different?" yes. no longer gawky, she traded her glasses for contacts, and even got eyelid surgery to give her more western eyefolds, along with brown streaks in her hair. fresh from hawaii, she was dressed in too little clothes for this time of the year. in hawaii she's on a 2 years english studies program, and she came to boston to visit my godmother and her two sons, her former neighbors. jack also had a bunch of friends over from umass lowell, all asian, all from taiwan, except for kumiko (she goes to harvard), who's a regular visitor here and whom i've seen on a few other occasions at my godmother's place. tonight was all about feeling like a stranger in a strange land. on the one hand i felt old being reunited with this "little girl" whom i met 8 years ago, and on the other hand being with a large group of asians always makes me feel weird for some reason. i spent the first half of the night at the "adult" table talking with my parents, my godmother, and a friend of hers. later when i got bored i made the transition to the younger kids, conversing in either english or chinese depending on which ever language they're more proficient in. when i talked with lillian, she was amazed that i had lived here for the past 22 years (i don't think she's even 22 years old yet) and that i'm still able to speak chinese. at the end of the night, because it was jack's birthday, we had a cake and some presents were opened. the "little friends" all got dressed and went out to party some more. soon afterwards my parents and i left as well.