i had a bout of insomnia last night. maybe i was just nervous about going to the doctor this morning, although i had no reason to be concerned. i got up and finished watching frost/nixon on my laptop. around 4:30 i gave sleep another try. i was thinking, if i can just fall asleep before the sun rise, i'll be good. by the time i actually fell unconscious at 7:00, the sun was already out. the 2 hours worth of sleep i had before i woke up at 9:00 wasn't really very productive either. here's something you might not know about me: i'm terrified of alarm clocks. nothing worse than being suddenly shocked into consciousness by a ringing siren. so what happens is i keep on waking up to check the time, trying to catch the alarm before it goes off. it's a little game i call "reducto" (why? because i'm crazy). it gets so bad that i'm waking up every few minutes. this is how 2 hours can feel like a lifetime. i ended up getting out of bed 10 minutes before 9:00. 20 minutes i was out the door for my 9:45 doctor's appointment.

the hospital didn't seem particularly busy but i still had to wait an hour before my doctor saw me. since the ACE-inhibitor he prescribed a month ago hasn't reduced my blood pressure, i already knew what he was going to do next: prescribe a supplemental diuretic. i'd been on hydrochlorothiazide before (in conjunction with atenolol), but it had no effect on me other than to leech potassium from my system. my doctor prescibed 12.5mg chlorthalidone, which has similar effects to thiazide but longer lasting. while chatting with my doctor, he told me he and his girlfriend had already turned off the heat in their somerville apartment. that inspired me to do the same when i got back home. before i left, i had some blood drawn to check my potassium level.

i went to the porter square CVS to pick up my prescription. i had to wait an additional 15 minutes before the hospital faxed the order but nobody had prepared it yet. when i got my prescription, it seemed kind of light. i was going to return to the pharmacy and complain but read in the directions that i was supposed to take just half a tablet per day. how would that work? i needed a pill cutter. i went home and rode to the cafe to borrow my great uncle's pill cutter. while i was there i had some noodles for lunch. i also went down to the basement and found a few emerging seedlings. i completely forgot where i planted what, but i turned on the grow lights.

the sky was blue with some busy wispy clouds on the horizon. the weather was deceptively serene, but i knew a storm was coming. as the day wore on, it became more overcast, until it started to rain in the afternoon. as promised, i went down into the basement and turned off the heat, thus officially ending the 2008-2009 winter heating season. there's a whole ceremony behind it: first i blow out the pilot light, then i close the gas valve, before turning off the electricity to the furnace. i'm going to miss the heat, but won't miss paying for it. i'll miss how toasty warm my bathroom gets and i'll miss standing on the forced air grate when the furnace is running.

going to the doctor inspired me to fill out my masshealth medical benefit request form. i earned so little money in 2008 that i qualify for some kind of assisted medical insurance. since i'm self-employed, i pay my own health insurance, but if there's any way i can reduce that amount, it's definitely worth applying for.

i fell asleep on the couch again in the early evening, but only for a few minutes before waking up and feeling completely refreshed. i made some canned oyster chowder, wasn't very good, i ate as much as i could and threw away the rest. i got a chance to clean out the fridge a little bit (tossing some leftovers) before taking out the trash.