after making an omelette with chicken sausages and coffee for lunch, i rode the motorcycle to the cafe in the early afternoon to take my mother to the belmont senior center to talk with the medicare consultant. i'd never been there before and didn't even know it existed. surrounded by a large parking lot big enough for 70 cars, inside was a bustling collection of seniors just hanging out, whether chatting, playing board games, using the gym, or surfing the web on the computer. we went upstairs and found the clinician's office who also doubled as the medicare consultant. she told us that the HMO my parents currently use - tufts health plan - has been rated the best in massachusetts (the only 5 star medicare HMO). she showed us where to go online if we wanted to change doctor, which was one of the reasons my mother wanted to go with a different HMO. the consultant also compared the different tufts plans, breaking down the monthly fees and copayments for different services.

back at the cafe, i went with my father on a chinatown supply run. the city itself was surprisingly empty, likewise at the asian supermarket, where there were more employees than actual customers. we came by back 3pm.

i wore my new sherpa hoodie on the motorcycle today. with temperature in the lower 40's, i hardly felt the chill, with its more thickly padded arms. incorporated with the vest, it makes for a very warm combination.

the additional pants i ordered from gap.com arrived two, 2 pairs of jeans (straight fit, dark indigo, resin rinse, with gapflex) and a pair of flannel-lined twill pants in deep woods. these were my first pair of flannel-lined pants; my father has been wearing them for my winters now and swears by them. i didn't know what all the fuss was until i put them on. the flannel material didn't seem particular warm (wasn't fleece after all, just a cotton blend), but immediately after wearing them i noticed the difference, even though these pants were still cold from being left outside on my doorsteps. they're surprisingly warm and comfortable, not sure why i never tried them sooner. the ones i got were 2" longer in the legs, but because they're meant to be worn rolled up (so you can see the flannel lining underneath), they fit perfectly. i have a feeling these will be my go-to winter pants.

for dinner i had 2 slices of pizza, a glass of chocolate milk, and a plate of orange wedges. not sure what i ate last night, but before i was about to go to bed, i felt a sudden intense urge to use the bathroom and spend some serious minutes bowled over on the toilet feeling like i was about to die. this may sound funny but i actually like this sort of experience, because when it's over i felt like i've been reborn. the cramps were so bad there were moments i thought i was going to be vomiting as well. i went back to bed gingerly, getting up one more time for a small sequel before finally going to bed for good.