rain. nothing happens when it falls. nothing in my life at least since it means i can't go out and i'm stuck at home the whole day. not just little rain either, but the windy kind that makes me think a tree branch or two might get blown onto the roads.

no signs of kimchee fermentation yet. i decided to turn them upside to better distribute the juices. hours later i realized it was a bad idea when i noticed the jars with the plastic lids were leaking onto the countertop (apparently they're not watertight). fortunately it wasn't too much and i think the kimchee will still be okay.

i wasn't staying at home the entire day: there was a slideshow lecture about burma at 7:00 at the cambridge multicultural arts center at the east end of town. i got a notice via e-mail, the photographer was a somerville man i met at an open studios back in the spring. the hard part was deciding how to get there. if it wasn't raining, the clear choice would've been via motorcycle. a little drizzle, probably the bicycle. but the rain was heavy at times, and combined with the winds and night time conditions, i figured it was safer and drier just taking the subway instead.

about an hour before i left there was a blackout in my neighborhood. this happens a lot actually, like once every few months, more often if NSTAR is doing work. since there was still a bit of daylight i managed to light some candles before it got completely dark. i showered by the glow of a flickering votive, the steam from the hot water like some orange fog. i thought it was ironic that i was showering now, when as soon as i step outside i'd be caught in another shower.

i got off at kendall square and walked to the top of 2nd street, where the CMAC is located. i'd never been in that space before, quite spacious inside, with gallery space and a large high-ceiling function room where the slide presentation and lecture would take place. there was a $5 suggested donation which wasn't mentioned on the e-mail. i said i didn't have any money. one of the woman got all passive aggressive and said with a laugh, "no money, no entrance," while another woman told me, "go right in." i met the photographer, who said we had a few minutes before he started and that i could first check out the gallery of his photos in an adjoining room. most of the photos were pretty good, although i thought a few blurry ones should've been left behind. burma's one of those insanely photogenic places where it's not very hard to grab a good shot, especially considering the 2 months the photographer spent in that country. i gasped when i saw the price sheet for the photos, at least $1000 for an unframed copy. i think that's a little bit obscene.

before the lecture the speaker/photographer asked if anyone's been to burma. i raised my hand, along with 2 other asians sitting in the back of the room. one of the asians left soon afterwards with his boyfriend, apparently the lecture wasn't to their liking. the speaker had been in burma a year after i was there, when there was less traveling restrictions and the standard visa was 1 month instead of just 2 weeks. he overstayed his visa but the only penalty was he had to pay a small fine when he eventually left the country. some of the places i'd also visited (mandalay, inle lake, bagan) but he definitely saw a lot more than i did. afterwards there was some question and answer. in typical cambridge fashion, a lot of the questions were about the politics of burma, like human rights violations and the oppressive government. the speaker to his credit tried to articulate the complexity of the situation, that even if the government was somehow replaced with a new democratic government, burma still has a lot of other problems, like civil war with the hill tribes. a little bit after 9:00 i took my leave while the Q&A was still in session.

instead of walking back to kendall square, i went to lechmere station instead, close enough that i could almost see it at the end of the street. i waited for the bus, which would take me to either harvard square or close to porter square depending on which one i took. i ended up catching the 87 and got off close to the somerville avenue subways so i could get some dinner. even though they officially close at 10:00, the employees had already locked the door by 9:50. disappointed, i walked home to have another slice of lasagna for dinner. at least the power was back on.