after planting my rosemary in the garden, i bicycled down to haymarket in the early afternoon to browse for cheap produce. not sure if it's because of bike week or just the warmer weather, but there were definitely more people biking today. not the usual bike commuters either, since i managed to pass several of them (normally i'm the one getting left behind). after getting some lunch takeout in chinatown, i returned home. crossing the western avenue bridge into cambridge, i spotted a black-crowned night heron landing by the bank of the charles river. i grabbed my camera to get a few snapshots. through the telephoto lens i was shocked to see not just one night heron, but actually several, all standing creepily along the riverbank.

just by shear coincidence i also ran into my 2nd aunt and uncle taking a leisurely stroll along the charles river. i chatted with them briefly before dropping off some stuff at the cafe and then finally back home.

in the early evening my godmother's son jack called me asking if i wanted to go with him to the stoughton ikea to buy a television stand for his new 55" HDTV. since i had nothing else going on, i agreed (i pretty much never decline an invitation to check out cheap swedish furniture). his car was too small to fit the stand so when he finally came to pick me up he borrowed my parents' honda element.

the only problem with jack's plan was he wanted to go around 5:00. the last place anyone would want to be is on interstate 93 during rush hour traffic. he knew the risk but was determined to go regardless. the bumper-to-bumper congestion began from the science museum and didn't end until we got to exit 7 leaving for cape cod. we left my place at 5:30 and didn't get to ikea until 7:00.

if i had the money, i'd furnish my place with even more ikea furniture. i love the colors and the style and everything's so inexpensive. so what if the quality can sometimes be on cheap side? assembling your own bookshelf or coffee table makes you love it that much more! and if it breaks, that's one more reason to get a new one in the latest style!

they didn't have the tv stand jack saw in the catalog, something about it being discontinued. instead i helped him decide on a similar stand, not as long and $20 more expensive ($200) but it has 3 storage drawers and 3 shelves. we finally left the store around 8:30, just half an hour before they closed. the trip back home was much faster, although there was still bumper-to-bumper congestion on the outbound side of 93 because of road repairs.

jack wanted to treat me to dinner for taking the time to come with him to do some ikea shopping. i told him it wasn't necessary. since he didn't have dinner yet, we made a pit stop in allston so he could get some taiwanese takeout. while waiting for his food, he also filled the tank on the car and bought some chinese pastries for my parents.

jack dropped me off at my parents' place then quickly swung over to his mother's to eat dinner and pick up a stereo system before coming back to get me and my father. we drove the element and followed jack in his car to his new apartment in waltham (prime location, right off of moody street). we helped him move all the stuff inside and checked out his place before leaving.

by the time my father drove me to cambridge, it was well past 11:00.