my hose mender kit had arrived at the watertown home depot. i was going to get it, but my father said he also needed to visit home depot to return some unused reducer connectors, so i stopped by the cafe first. we then went to belmont to get the parts, but that's when my father realized it was still back at the cafe. so back to the cafe we went, where i took the parts and went to home depot by myself.

there was a wrinkle when i tried to return one of the parts, because the UPC sticker had partially rubbed off, and the clerk couldn't read what it was (i didn't have the receipt either). so i had to go find the matching merchandize in the aisles and bring it back so it could be scanned properly. i then moved to the next counter over for item pickup. i waited over 10 minutes before somebody was able to help me, as the two clerks were busy, one with a customer, one on the phone. and when they finally retrieved my order, i could feel through the padded envelope that it was the wrong item, even though the envelope had my name on it. i opened it up to confirm, it was a square metal bracket, not a hose mender. turns out they made a mistake, and the clerk went back to storage and finally found the right item. so what should've been a fairly routine visit to home depot ended up taking me nearly half an hour.

i returned to the cafe, where i painted over some scuffed up wall areas (elephant grey). since i didn't have lunch yet, my mother fixed me up a bowl of noodles. i returned home to fix the garden hose.

inserting the plastic nozzle in the cut hose took some effort. i had to wear rubber gloves so i could get a good grip and slowly twist and push the nozzle into the hose. afterwards i screwed the clamp into place. i turned on the water but it was still leaking! but not from the hose but rather the plastic sprayer, which is a piece of crap anyway. i screwed on the heavy duty metal orbit sprayer from my parents' place and it worked perfectly. however, i noticed a leak at the other end of the hose, which means that end has to be repaired as well. at this rate, it might be cheaper just to buy a new hose rather than trying to repair it. but in the spirit of conservation and not simply throwing something out because it doesn't work well anymore, fixing the hose is still the right thing to do. of course all this effort will go unnoticed by my upstairs neighbors, but i do these things for my own personal satisfaction.

i biked to market basket around 2:30pm to get a few grocery items. my mother asked for bean sprouts so afterwards i returned to the cafe once more to drop off the sprouts. i returned home by 4pm, spent the next few hours taking some practice exams, trying to up my score.

i left before 6:30pm, to MIT, where the exams were being held. there were helpful signs posted throughout the corridors pointing me to the direction of the exam room. inside were already half a dozen people, and the numbers would grow to a full dozen including myself. the demographic was mostly male, with there being a single young woman. the age was mostly older, but there were a few younger guys, college/grad school age. the lone black person was also the lone female.

there were 3 test administrators, an older man, a middle-aged man, and a woman in an electric wheelchair. they passed out a 605 form for us to fill in, and then one by one we went up to show our id, pay our $14 (in cash) and get our exam. had i known this earlier i would've sat in front of the classroom instead of in the back. because of that, i didn't get my test until 40 minutes later, when people who had already gotten their test already were nearly finished with the exam. everyone was here for the technician license (1st level) except for one person who was here for his general (2nd level).

once finished, each person would hand the test back to the proctors, who then asked if the person wanted to take the next level exam. at first i thought it was a joke, something for us to do while they graded the tests (which took a long time because each proctor had to verify the exam). but 2 people passed - one guy who had studied the general exam, and the guy who was applying for his general - so they each got upgraded respectively to general and amateur extra. had i known you could do this, i would've studied for the general exam as well so i could upgrade my license to the 2nd level.

as the administrators graded each exam, they'd announce the result accordingly. everyone passed the technician. i passed with one wrong. then they graded the extra exams, and announced the results accordingly. only then did they begin handing out the certificate of exam completion. the whole process was very slow and tedious, i would've brought a book if i'd known. i felt bad for the few people who had to be somewhere else, including a brown university freshman who needed to catch the train back to providence (he missed it, hopefully there's another one). i didn't get out of there until after 9:30pm. next time, sit in front of the class so you can take the exam earlier and leave earlier.