i left my house at 11am to bike to haymarket for cheap produce. the last time i biked into boston was all the way back at the end of october to see the halloween costume dash; the last time i biked to haymarket was the middle of october - so it's been a while. the weather was a hazy overcast with temperature in the upper 40's lower 50's, a pretty nice day considering the bone-chilling weather we've experienced the past few weeks. originally i was also going to chinatown, but my mother said they might be going on monday, so it saved me some time. besides, i wanted to get back before 1pm to see the pro-women anti-trump protest happening on cambridge common.
the only problems i had with biking were the hills: climbing over the longfellow bridge followed by going up beacon hill. i could feel the muscles of my thighs straining, which i haven't felt in a while. it's a good thing though, meant that i was getting much needed exercise. it took me half an hour to finally arrive.
i was at haymarket primarily for the oranges: my mother wanted freshly squeezed orange juice and i knew they had the best prices here. i ended up with a dozen large navel oranges for $3. i also left with: 9 nectarines ($2), a clutch of garlic ($1.50), pound of ginger ($1.50), 2 pineapples ($2), 2 bundles of asparagus ($2), and a bundle of asian long beans ($1).
while fishing around my pockets getting ready to leave i discovered i lost one of my gloves. for a split second i thought about going back and search, but it was one of those cheap mini-gloves anyway (old and tattered), not worth the time. i left by noontime.
i made it back home by 12:30pm. after dropping off the groceries (putting the asparagus in a tray of water), i gathered my photo equipment and walked down to cambridge common, about 10 minutes away. all day long i was seeing groups of people with signs and pink hats heading towards harvard square. walking down mass ave, there was just a stream of protesters all walking in the same direction.
why the protest was being held in cambridge i don't know. it seems like a lot of recent protests have been staged here, maybe it's easier to get a permit in cambridge than it is in boston. or perhaps they weren't expecting a huge turnout, although the steady stream of protesters says otherwise. cambridge common is relatively flat, and with all the recent snow melts, the lawn was a muddy mess. i went in search of high grounds to take photos, and perched on a stone bench along with a group of protesters.
there were guest speakers; the only one i recognized was the first one, massachusetts attorney general maura healey. unfortunately i was standing some distance behind the stage so i could neither see nor hear very well, but didn't want to move because i had a good vantage point otherwise, and didn't think i'd find a better place with the crowd size swelling. the event was also advertised as a march, but i didn't think that would be taking place (i didn't see any online notice for routes). i stayed for an hour, absorbing all the spectacle and solidarity, admiring the creative signs and hats, before finally leaving. even then, there were still streams of people heading towards the common.
i passed by the community garden on my way home, should start thinking about what kind of seeds i want to buy for the upcoming season. back in the house, i sliced 4 navel oranges and extracted their juices using my braun juicer. i found this juicer almost 7 years ago, used it sparingly as it only seems to be good for making OJ and it's much easier and cheaper to just buy orange juice than making it fresh. of course, fresh squeezed tastes much better than any kind of store-bought juice. my parents have a manual juicer at the cafe, the kind that you pull down with a handle, but my mother doesn't like it because she says it also extracts the oils from the peels. with my braun juicer that doesn't happen because it extracts the liquids by rotating onto the pulp instead of any pressing.
with fresh juice in container, i left for belmont around 2:45pm. i haven't biked to my parents' place in almost a month (the last time was christmas eve). the hills were a challenge, but i was also on the lookout for patches of slippery sand.
even with the hazy sun we still managed to produce 12.55kWh by the end of the day, our 7th most productive (not as much as yesterday). snow from the room has mostly melted except for a row at the bottom of the sunroom panels and some off on the side from where my father pushed off the snow.
i was going to use the long beans to make sichuan paocai, but my mother said it was too old so we stir-fried it instead. we also ate the asparagus and the pineapple. i ended up bringing 4 of the navel oranges back home with me because my mother wanted more orange juice.
i biked back to cambridge by 7:30pm.