looking out in the backyard, i saw animals scurrying around outside in the leaves. they turned out to be birds, white-throated sparrows in fact. they're one of my favorite sparrows because they're easy to identify. they seemed to be foraging for food. minutes later a group of noisy squirrels scared them away. one even climb onto the deck railing to snack on a piece of acorn. my christmas cactus are also close to blooming. my rather shady backdoor combined with the cooler temperature found there naturally induces these plants to flower early.

i left for belmont a bit before noon, while ana still wasn't awake yet. she came home late last night, by then i was already asleep. i took the motorcycle, confident i'd find a parking spot when i return home later today, despite street sweeping tomorrow morning. my mother made some rice noodle for lunch soon after i arrived. i watched some football games while i ate. the eagles-dolphins game seemed to be a contest between 2 teams with losing records, so i watched the lions-packers game instead. detroit has only won a single game this season, against green bay, which a few weeks ago was undefeated, but since then has lost twice in a row.

i went out around halftime to rake the maple leaves in the backyard. it didn't take very long, just half an hour. i dumped a few barrels of leaves in the compost piles and then later in the southeastern corner of the yard.

my sister was back from walking hailey in the woods when i went back inside the house. she said hailey was attacked by some other off-leash dogs and one of them bit her on the rear end, drawing some blood. hailey rested in the living room while my sister went out back. i finished watching the rest of the lions-packers game, which ended with detroit winning. there will be a lot of shifting in the NFL power ranking after this weekend!

of course i was waiting for 4:30pm all the day for the start of the patriots-giants game. we watched through dinner and afterwards. the game was insane, especially after julian edalman left in the first quarter with a foot injury and didn't come back (which later after the game we found out was a broken foot). suddenly the patriots offense didn't seem to have any teeth, with running back dion lewis out for the season as well with a torn ACL. new york wasn't supposed to be this good, but eli manning was throwing bombs and all his receivers were catching them like they had magnets in their gloves. it didn't look good, and at various points throughout the game, i had that feeling that new england might not win this one.

4th quarter was the worst, like at the 7:07 mark it looked like blount ran it into the end zone, which would've gave the pats an 8 point lead, but it was taken away on a holding penalty by david andrews. on the next play the giants committed a penalty (illegal hands to face) which gave new england a new set of downs at the 6 yard line. on 2nd and goal however, brady threw an interception, turning the ball over to new york.

despite it all, i never gave up, and i forced myself to finish watching the game. that turned out to be the right decision, because the patriots managed to crawl back and eek out a victory with a field goal kick with just one second left in the game. it was a rollercoaster ride with new england coming out victorious in the end, but at another great cost with yet more depleted talent. next monday against the buffalo bills with be interesting. at least it's a home game!

i found a space spot to park when i returned home. ana was nowhere to be found, and she didn't cook lunch today either, so there was no cooking stink.