i was indispensable today. as soon as i woke up this morning, i went on a supply run for my 2nd aunt: wasabi powder from the korean store and some carrots and cabbage from market basket.

after dropping that off, i did a load of laundry. sure, it looked like i fixed it yesterday, but i only tested with an empty load. i couldn't be absolutely sure until i washed some actual clothes. the verdict: the washing machine is 100% back in operation.

i finally bought a different wireless webcam with the amazon.com credit i got from returning the buggy zyxel webcam frances and fredrik got me as a present. i got the foscam FI8910W (in white). normally it sells for $100, but the price had dropped to $80 for a few weeks. but just when i was about to buy it, the price went up to $88. i decided to wait a bit longer, hoping the price would drop again. yesterday, it dropped to $84, but this morning, it was $63 in a special one-day-only sale. the lowest i've ever seen it sold was $60, through a groupon deal (long since expired). i didn't want to wait any longer so i bought one. who knew amazon prices are like the stock market? with the leftover money i may also get a neoprene cover for my camera at some later date. (by late evening the price on the FI8910W had jumped to $95).

i had an elizabeth warren sighting. i'd seen her once before, at the pride march back in june. this was my first time seeing her at home, even though i pass by her place all the time. she was walking towards her house from her driveway, wearing a pink business jacket and black pants, her distinctive blonde coif, holding a stack of papers in her hand. she was by herself, which seemed weird, because wouldn't she have some sort of security detail? still, it's kind of trippy to be living so close to a US senator, especially one so high profile as she is.

i was indispensable for my sister because i spent another day dogsitting, especially after she decided to go out in the evening, almost forgetting to feed her dog, totally didn't care that our parents were coming back from new mexico ("clean the house? why bother, it'll just get dirty again tomorrow," - her exact words). i washed a sink full of dirty dishes after realizing if i waited for my sister to do them (like she promised), they'd never get done. i was stranded in belmont with nothing to eat so i made some ramen for dinner. after letting hailey out into the backyard to go to the bathroom, she came back inside and stared me down with her canine laser eyes, willing me to give her a treat. i ended up giving her a small piece of dog cookie.

finally, i was indispensable for my parents because i was picking them up from the airport, along with my aunt and uncle. their flight was originally due to return at 8:00 but mechanical delay in texas resulted in a 10:00 arrival time. fortunately my father called earlier to let me know they'd be running late. i spent the evening repeatedly checking their flight status online.

i was waiting in the cellphone lot for more than half an hour, sipping hot tea as the inside of the car became progressively colder. there's something definitely sketchy about the cellphone lot, especially at night, with people sitting inside their cars, like a gay cruise site. i closed my eyes and pretended to be asleep, occasionally distracted by the numerous airport and hotel/car rental shuttle buses driving by.

my father called when they finally landed around 10:23, then called again once they were waiting outside on the curb. i was looking forward to driving everyone back but my father took over, even though i told him he should rest and let me drive. there was a wicked traffic jam on the outbound side of storrow drive; i warned my father about it, told him we should divert to memorial drive just to be safe. but we decided to risk it, figuring the congestion had cleared up, but we ended up getting stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic from the mass ave bridge to the cambridge street bridge. it took us 25 minutes to navigate that little stretch of road; it did give me an opportunity to hear their new mexico stories. it seemed like everyone had a good time, although very tired.

when we finally reached the end of the congestion, turns out it wasn't a traffic accident but rather construction repairs in one of the below ground lanes. simply by reducing the traffic from 2 lanes to 1 lane grounded that stretch of storrow drive to a near halt.

once my parents got home (after dropping off my aunt and uncle in arlington), they unpacked their suitcases. they didn't buy too many souvenirs, just some t-shirts and some hats (all purchased in walgreen's of all places). my mother bought a decorative strand of hot peppers and an indian-style rug (made in mexico). most interesting were the few rocks she brought back. some of them looked like remnants of geodes, smooth on the outside, crystal on the inside.

the temperature today was in the 50's but by the time i rode home well past midnight, the temperature was only in the 30's. fortunately i'd been wearing my jacket since leaving for the airport, so i was feeling pretty warm. i'd also known about the temperature drop so i wore an extra layer of thermal underwear. the streets were empty, which made for a nice ride if it weren't so cold. the sky was cloudless, nothing but stars and a half moon.

finally, remember how i said numerous HD videos clips taken with the 60D would stop prematurely? this shouldn't be happening since the memory card i'm using is a fast class 10. so on a whim, i decided to reformat the card, using a low-level format this time around. i was afraid it'd take a long time, but it only took a few seconds. and guess what? now the camera will shoot videos without stopping! i tested it briefly, moving the camera around, and never once did the saving-in-progress thermometer come up.