with the mattress safely outside, i slept well last night, unencumbered by any musty smells. i woke up per my usual time, with LJ already gone. i checked the front door to make sure she locked it (yes) and noticed my keys were gone (no). i found them off on the side however; for some reason she took them off in order to use her own key. i also noticed slippers in the foyer; she obvisouly heard my message about not wearing shoes inside the house.

the weather this morning was sunny for a change. clouds of all shapes and sizes hovered overhead (hinting at what was yet to come) but the sun was out and it was dry for the time being. after an omelette for lunch, i took the motorcycle out for a spin.

first stop was the watertown home depot to return some corner brackets and unused screws. they had a 50% sale on all bulbs; granted, most of them were in sad shape, either stunted germinated or dried up altogether. i couldn't resist the bargain and got a bag of mixed caladiums for $5. i also picked up a packet of toothed lock washer (for my ongoing project of figuring out a good way to secure my rear baskets).

i then went to belmont. i was primarily there to pick up another bag of salt marsh grass for my own garden (there are 3 large containers of it in my parents' backyard) but also to check up on the plants. i was there just 4 days ago but things have changed so much. a lot of my vining seedlings have died for some reason, either eaten by slugs or shriveled up from the lack of sun, too much rain, too little rain, etc. mysterious causes. my delphinium seedlings never did very well to begin with but something had eaten up most of them, and was chewing on the daisies. and the lawn - it was practically a jungle now, with nobody bothering to mow it. this weekend looks to be another busy yard work day.

the one bright spot was one of the first season snapdragons had finally flowered. it wasn't pink or white like the ones from last season; this one was fiery red with hints of yellow and orange, like fire.

i strapped on my large plastic bag full of marsh grass to my motorcycle and rode back to cambridge. it wasn't yet 3:00 and the weather forecast said the thunderstorms wouldn't arrive until 4:30. they were wrong. the sky was already darkening, and a black mass of rain clouds was quickly overtaking everything. i made it home okay, but less than 5 minutes later it began to rain. normally i'd cover up the bike, but since the engine was still hot, i just let the bike soak, figuring i'll wash/wax it anyway this weekend.

this first pass of rain was heavy but quickly went by. i went out and dried up the bike before putting on the cover in anticipation of the next downpour. i even had time to go to the real estate office to pick up a packet of open houses announcements, and chatted with bruce briefly who told me he was going with his brother and his family on a tuscany vacation next week.

although it looked close on the doppler radar, the next storm didn't arrive until almost 5:00. this one was scary. it started normal enough, a progressive darkening of the sky, followed by increasing amount of rain. but the amount of rain was dialed up to 11, because it was rainy so hard it was just a sheet of white outside and the loud hissing of a billion raindrops. did i mention the thunder and lightning? then there was the wind, hurricane force winds, swaying trees, flapping street signs. i watched in horror as the combination of rain and win buffeted by motorcycle. the strongest winds lasted no more than a minute, but all i could do was watch in terror as it looked like my motorcycle was going to get toppled. fortunately that didn't happen.

once the rain stopped then started the street flooding. with storm drains to maximum capacity, the water in the street came up so it was washing over the sidewalks. when cars drove by they carried an explosive wave of splashes; i pity any pedestrians who were outside because not only did they experience the downpours (forget your useless umbrellas!), but they also suffered the indignity of getting splashed by vehicles.

the water level in the street slowly diminished, and half an hour later you wouldn't have even known it was flooded.

LJ came home before 7:00 with more bags of groceries. "you must really like it there," i joked, "you go everyday!" she then made dinner in the kitchen; i didn't bother looking, so long as it didn't stink up the house, anything was okay. later when i went to make my own dinner (pizza rolls, favorite of slackers everywhere) i saw what she was doing: apparently she was cooking some pasta noodle soup, but using my rice cooker to do it when she should've used the stove. the rice cooker is designed to steam rice, so when you fill it up with soup, it never stops cooking, and keeps on heating until all the liquids have evaporated. that's why she was constantly wiping the rice cooker. i suggested using a pot next time over the stove.

the rest of the evening was pretty quiet. i helped LJ take down the television in her room (which she doesn't use) in order to clear up more desk space for her laptop (which she was using to watch some chinese variety show then later chatted with a relative). she commented on how fast my wifi connection was (not the first person to do so, many roommates have said the same; what kind of slow wifi do they have overseas?).