without breakfast, i left for belmont in the late morning. temperature was a startling 54°F, felt more spring than winter. i started the motorcycle without having to engage the choke, that's how warm it was. this being the final week of yard waste pickup in belmont, today was the last day of yard work for this year. my parents weren't home yet when i arrived (out on another supply run to food-pak express in south boston). i took a short trip to home depot to get a pair of fiskars titanium-coated anvil pruning shears ($17 after taxes).1 i returned to the house and started the yard work.
my parents joined me in the clean-up as well when they got back shortly afterwards: my mother was raking the remaining leaves from the front lawn while my father and i were pruning the japanese maple and the quince bush. from there we moved to the front of the house and pruned the arborvitaes, the yews, and the holly. we also cleared out the gutters. after my father went back inside around 2:30pm, i did some more work, including patching up some rabbit holes and digging out a long bamboo rhizome that escaped our bamboo moat.
my mother was going to make me something because i hadn't eaten anything all day, but it was already so close to dinnertime, and i wasn't particularly hungry, i decided to wait. in the meantime i had plenty of snacks. my mother asked if i had any shows or movies for her to watch (nothing good on cable/netflix/amazon prime), i streamed isle of dogs with chinese subtitles which she seemed to like.
dinner tasted especially delicious since i hadn't eaten the entire day. i also had a leftover flan for dessert before returning home. temperature had dropped to 42°F but that was still warm considering the colder weather we've been having. after a shower i watched a bit of football before tuning to legends of tomorrow and the good doctor.
1 we do have a pair of bypass shears, but it doesn't cut very well, mashing twigs instead of slicing them cleanly. you basically have to cut at a 90° angle or else. as a general rule, bypass are for living "green" branches while anvil are for dead "brown" branches. but anvils are just easier to use, more cutting power compared to bypass. we had an anvil a while back and i remember how great it was, but it mysteriously disappeared one season. i could've bought this pair off of amazon for cheaper but i couldn't wait.