this morning i realized i had prescription nasal spray in my bathroom cabinet and pumped some strong medicine up my nose. that gave me the strength to bike to belmont without incident. i noticed that the released waring blender (all shiny looking) was gone from the curb. hope it found a good home! and hope that whoever took it will realize it's essentially broken and not try to blend anything. but that's the danger of curbage, picker beware.
it'd rain earlier, and all day it looked like it'd continue but nothing fell except for a few drops. something about a high pressure front on the ocean keeping the low pressure storms away (or maybe i got that backwards).
in belmont i looked for my missing watch. i noticed it was gone when i rode home yesterday. i remember taking it off before cooking, but the only place i would've put it was in my pocket and that was empty. after searching through the house, i decided to look outside on a whim. wouldn't it be funny if my watch simply fell out of my pocket? from the front steps i saw the watch on the road. i ran to it barefoot, quickly picking it up and inspecting it for damages. even though it was in the streets overnight and much of the morning, no cars had rode over it, and there wasn't a single scratch, just a bit wet from the rain. of all the joggers and strollers and dogwalkers in the neighborhood, nobody saw it either to pick it up. what are the odds? i felt super lucky, put on the watch, and promised myself not to take it off.
in the afternoon i saw an ad for a lady ross road bike selling for $20 in porter square. it looked to be in pretty good shape (from the low resolution photo), although the seller warned that the rear shifter didn't work and the brakes were a little soft. i liked the drop handlebars (i've never owned a functional bike that had that) and the rear rack. the seller was also a small-sized woman so i knew the bike would be able to fit me. finally, that price! $20? a steal!
i quickly wrote off an e-mail to the seller, figuring it'd already been sold by that point. the seller replied minutes later with a phone number that i called to tentatively schedule an appointment to see the bike for later tonight. when i told my mother she thought i was crazy. "not another one!" she cried, "how many do you have now?" not counting the two preexisting bikes in the garage, there are 3 more in belmont, while in my basement at home i have 6 (2 of them for parts). the only one i could possibly imagine giving away is the magna, and that one i just inherited. i'm not much of a bike snob, but even i wouldn't be caught dead riding a magna.
maybe because it looked like it might rain any second, my father kept inside for much of the day. i helped him convert my great uncle's book into an epub document, breaking up all the chapters so they'd look nice in the table of content. we sent it to the ipad through dropbox and viewed it in ibooks. it looked very professional, the only things missing now are hyperlinked footnotes, a few tables, and a book cover. he continued with the edits via dropbox on his pc laptop running the cross-platform app sigil.
my mother was busy knitting up a storm. apparently she's like the rain man of knitting patterns, because all she has to do is study a photo and can pretty much recreate the item. so far it's been mostly berets and beanies, about half a dozen now. she watches youtube/tudou videos online or get inspirations from surfing knitting sites.
we had some beef curry for dinner (i forgot to take a photo), not the thai kind but rather the variety just made up at home. i think there was some garden tomatoes in the sauce and a lot of cumin.
i left soon afterwards, trying to get back home by 8:00. by coincidence i ran into renee, who chatted with me briefly before i cut her off so i could contact hannah the bike seller. somehow i still found time to run down the street and pick up a 4-tiered shoe rack somebody had thrown out. i like the additional shoe storage space but the wire rack is kind of flimsy.
hannah lived on cedar street at the intersection of summer. it took me about 15 minutes to walk there. i accidentally pressed the wrong buzzer and got one of her neighbor, who was just leaving. she said she could let me inside but i decided to wait for hannah to come down. the ross bike was in her living room, along with her new upgrade bike, an expensive-looking black and white specialized road bike with fenders and reflective tires. she wanted me to try out the ross, even going as far as suggesting i could test ride it. she gave me some more bike history: purchased last year, it ran fine until it didn't; for the most part it lived outside; when she bought it to the bike store, the guys there told her it wasn't worth getting a tune-up since the parts and repairs would be more than the bike's worth. hannah also told me she knew nothing about bike repairs, so couldn't fix it herself. she asked if i knew anything, but i played it cool, said i've dabbled a bit. just one look at the bike i was already sold. i was even happier to see that the tires were big and thin, exactly what i wanted. i paid her the $20 and left with a bike.
i walked the bike home, not trusting the brakes based on hannah's experience. it was also downhill, and without lights on a foreign bike with faulty brakes in the dark, it was just too dangerous. when i was about a few blocks away from home though, i couldn't resist and climbed onboard. the bike rode nice, but felt strange because i wasn't used to the drop handlebars. i didn't know where to put my hands, fumbling around trying to get a comfortable position. i was going too fast and sure enough the brakes were soft that i couldn't stop in time so i missed my street, going home instead a longer way.
i was going to just lock the bike outside but brought it into the kitchen so i could inspect all its parts. it's a 19" ross lady's eurosport. it's heavy like all ross bikes (those steel frames are sturdy but definitely not light). the wheels are 27 x 1-1/4", the biggest wheel-size bike i own, with the exception of the schwinn 7-speed cruiser (that my father rides) which has 28" wheels. there's some chipped paint on the top tube but otherwise the frame seems fine. the rims have a bit of rust on them, but nothing too bad. the rear shifter seems fine, it's the front shifter that appears to be stuck (rusted cable most likely the culprit). the brake pad spacing might need a little adjusting, or tighten and shorten the cable lengths for a closer contact. it has a wide vintage swiss-made pletscher rear rack (the rack itself sells for $20 used, the amount i paid for the bike).
i can't wait for daylight to do some test riding, although i hear tomorrow and tuesday are both rainy days.
i took the opportunity to organize my shoes. i didn't realize i had so many, and tossed out half a dozen pairs that i will never wear or just too old and worn out. previously i had a steel-framed 3-tiered shoe rack in the foyer, and a wooden 2-tiered ikea babord rack in the foyer closet. the steel-framed rack is too skinny and tall, only able to get 2 pairs of shoes per tier. the top tier i use to place my helmets and any incoming mail. the babord looks really wide but it can only hold half a dozen pairs. the babord might be stackable, but ikea doesn't make them anymore. i ended up taking out the babord and sticking the found shoe rack in the closet, where it can hold 12 pairs of shoes. but what i really need is a replacement for the steel-framed rack.