i tried waking up early at 6:00 to go birdwatching at the mount auburn cemetery. not being a natural morning person though, i just couldn't get myself to do it, but instead rationalized that it still wasn't peak spotting season yet. i also thought about going to crane beach for the day but april is too early for me to get all leathery and tan just yet. the temperature today rose into the 90's but it was a tolerable dry heat. for lunch, julie and i went to pho and rice across the street. she too was suffering from spring allergies and shredded some napkins in case she needed to blow her nose. this was my second lunch trip to this restaurant but was a first for julie. she ordered the grilled chicken vermicelli with a coconut shake while i had the tom yum noodle soup with a thai iced tea. julie was ecstatic when the shake arrived in a frothy thickness. the tom yum noodle soup was just okay, rather bland, not very sour and not very spicy. i added some chili pepper oil which made it better. afterwards i met julie at her garden (i motorcycled there while she bicycled), where i got to see what see was growing from seeds. afterwards i paid a trip to my own community garden, where i took the opportunity to water my pea sprouts. "you're gardening on the hottest day of the year?!" the woman who lived next to the garden shouted while pushing her baby stroller down the street.
my mother dropped by in the late afternoon while waiting for my aunt to finish up at the laundromat. after she left, i had a craving for something salty so decided to try my hands at making stovetop popcorn again. this time i picked a heavier pot. it took longer to pop the kernels but there was no charring. i used medium heat and the final result was much better with even salting, but because it took such a long time, the popcorn had a smokey taste to them. next time: high heat.
for dinner, i made one last reuben sandwich (i'm all cornbeefed out). in the late evening my godmother's son alex dropped by my place. i was just watching the celtics overtime victory against the bulls (3-2 now, boston needs one more win to advance). alex was planning his own 2 month long trip to china and wanted to borrow some books and maps and to get some traveling advice. even though he's never been to the mainland before, china will be an easier trip for him because he can speak and read chinese (i can only speak it and read a little). he's also returning to taiwan for a month and going to bangkok to visit a friend.