i was looking forward to a full saturday of errand running. out of my plate of things to do, i decided to ship out frances' norwegian package first. she bought so much stuff this time, so asked me to break them apart into two separate shipments, so norwegian customs won't get suspicion when they see 2 dozen pairs of shoes. i went down into the basement and found a large enough box.

since i can only transport one box at a time with my bike, i mailed off one of them first, postponing the second box for monday morning. i had the misfortune of riding into the wind. this day in general was very breezy which in turn made it colder than normal. there was 2 clerks working today so the line went fairly quick (there was only one person ahead of me).

next i walked to the community garden to dig up my rosemary for the season. i brought along an empty ceramic pot and my shovel. i was hoping for some peace and quiet but fellow gardener joel happened to be there as well, cleaning up his garden. in a perfect world i wouldn't even be caught talking to joel because he's kind of creepy.

i dug up my rosemary as quickly as possible and left. i didn't realize how heavy the pot would be, made worse by the fact i was also carrying a heavy shovel. at one point dropped the pot (from a low height) while trying to change hands and half the dirt tumbled out. i was on my knees scooping everything back into the pot.

i went to star market to get some cereal. i was going to pick one of my usual selection (apple jack, corn pops, frosted flakes), but decided i want to go healthy, and got the new kellogg's crunchy nut caramel nut cereal ($2.99). it was pretty good (i finally ate by around 1:00), but probably not as healthy as i expected, since sugar is the second ingredient. it sort of tastes like corn flakes sprinkled with crushed nuts.

next i went out in search of 10W40 motor oil. i took the motorcycle this time, didn't want to brave the winds again. first stop was advanced auto parts next to the somerville target. they had a wide selection, but all were pretty expensive ($6-9 quart bottle). the cheapest they had was store brand for $3.99, but they were all out of 10W40 (seems like a popular grade). one of the employees even went back to check if they had anymore; i didn't have the heart to tell him i just wasn't interested. fortunately they were all out.

since i was already there, i decided to take a quick peek at target in the slight chance they might have some 10W40 motor oil. i surprised to find they had some mobil 10W40 in stock, at the bargain price of $2.99 a bottle. i bought three.

during the checkout i asked the cashier if she had to work on black friday. she sighed and said she reported to work at 12:30am. given the choice, i think most retail workers would rather have the opportunity to enjoy a normal thanksgiving instead of coming into work at midnight. at least in massachusetts there are laws preventing stores from opening on thanksgiving day; in other states, workers aren't so lucky and have to suffer through the new indignity of black thursday.

i pulled over as i approached union square so i could check out the christmas trees for sale at ricky's flower market. earlier i saw a car with a tree tied to its roof. i was impressed with the selection, from pines to spruces to firs.

i spent the rest of the daylight hour in my bedroom, backing up some files and making a duplicate of a dvd using mac dvdripper pro. i've never used it before since i can't remember the last time i had to copy an actual disc. i also reconnected with the itunes library on my desktop computer, blaring music from the speakers. while waiting for the dvd to burn and verify, i made myself a mantou sandwich. i also peeled 2 pomegranates. some people might think pomegranates are a pain to eat because it's not easy to remove all the seeds, but i actually like removing all the kernels, kind of like the same feeling one gets from popping bubble wrap.

i wanted to go back to ricky's flower market around sunset to get some nice photos of the christmas trees with all the lights lit up, but i just didn't want to go back out to the cold, so that didn't happen. i pretty much completed everything i wanted to get done today, with the exception of cleaning the fish tank.

with my sister's birthday coming up next sunday, i figured i should get her a present. i ended up ordering her one of those retro phone attachment (in red) for her iphone. i actually want one for myself but it doesn't work with my dinky phone. i just hope it can get here in time.

i made one last mantou sandwich for a late dinner around 9:30. i ate while watching a copy of lawless, that movie about virginian moonshiners. the story is kind of plain and predictable but it features some great actors, including jessica chastain, tom hardy, and guy pearce.

i realized just tonight that i can actually pay and print out USPS shipping labels from home. i also save a few dollars with the online discount. the hardest part is figuring out how much a box weighs, but with my new bathroom scale capable of display a tenth of a decimal point, i can get fairly accurate readings. i'm going to try it out with the shipment i'm sending on monday.