a black bear up a tree in arlington was the news du jour this morning. animal control shot it with a tranquilizer dart and the bear had the foresight to finally climb down the tree (despite the mob of watching residential spectators) before it passed out. supposedly they'll reintroduce the bear (a young 2-3 years old male with study tags) to somewhere further out in western massachusetts.

the darkened sky because of the rain outside threw off my natural alarm clock and i woke up later than usual this morning. i thought maybe the rain would stop by noontime, but every time i checked the doppler radar it seemed like new rain clouds were forming, and the end of rain kept getting pushed back later and later.

i continued working on that splinter in my fingertip with the sewing needle as it was still hurting. i opened up the wound a little more, to the point where i got the splinter to poke out a bit. then it was just a simple matter of extracting the splinter with the tweezers. the splinter itself seemed like nothing, just a tiny bit of wood, yet it managed to cause all this discomfort.

finally by 12:30pm, when i saw a break in the rain, i got my cargo bike from the basement and pedaled to the cafe. it was still showering a little bit, but not enough to dampen my clothes.

i was at the cafe to inspect the memory cards on the wyze cameras to see who stole our garlic chives for the second time. suspicion fell heavily on the restaurant people, but we had no proof. when all of the garlic chives first disappeared just two weeks ago, the only thing we managed to capture was the before and after. so i adjusted the cameras to record 24/7, hoping to catch whoever it was that stole our garlic chives the first time should they come back again. and sure enough, the thief struck again on wednesday, not just in the parking lot garden behind the cafe, but in my sister's backyard as well.

yesterday i tried looking at the saved footage through the wyze app via the internet, but it was slow and prone to losing connection, so it was easier just to scrub the videos directly off the memory card. another problem i discovered was when my mother was looking at the videos when she was in taiwan was that the camera clocks would get set to taiwan time, so the timestamp would be messed up. i was afraid it'd also erase the old footage, but thankfully they were still on the card (just tagged as "old").

videos on the card are sorted by day, and within each day folder there are 24 folders representing the hours. in each of these hour folders are the actual videos, each one just a minute long, 60 files per folder. though viewing the videos directly was faster than doing it online, it was still tedious. thankfully my 2nd aunt was at the cafe when it happened, and she remembered there were still chives around 5pm, but were gone when she left by 6:30pm.

it was actually kind of exciting playing detective, pouring over the clues, looking for evidence. and before too long i found it: at exactly 6:25pm the cafe parking lot footage shows a chinese man carrying a bowl and a pair of scissors approaching the garlic chives. unfortunately the view is blocked by a van, but less than 2 minutes later he leaves the area with a bowl full of garlic chives.

but wait, there's more! the fact that my sister's backyard garlic chives were also snipped clearly meant that the restaurant people did it. but without actual proof, they could always deny it. not unless you're faced with video footage: at 6:30pm the video from my sister's backyard wyze camera showed the same man going through her garden taking all the garlic chives.

it felt good knowing what actually happened to our missing garlic chives, but at the same time a little worrying knowing that our restaurant neighbors would be so brazen with their theft. not only that, it was the restaurant owner who did this. while we were talking about it, my mother remembered many years ago that she actually told the restaurant owner that he could help himself to our garlic chives. he's never done it before until this year however. even then, common courtesy dictates that he asks first. common courtesy also dictates he only takes a little bit, not all of it. and it wasn't enough that he took everything the first time, but that he had the audacity to do it again 2 weeks later.

my father said he'd take care of it since my sister has no tact when it comes to neighborly diplomacy. we wouldn't even mention the videos, but should they deny it, we had footage of them in the act. in the grand scheme of things it's not a big deal, but it goes to show what kind of people these restaurant workers are that they would do such a thing.

i was set to return home, where hopefully the rain would stop and i could go to haymarket and get some produce. but it was still drizzling and i hadn't had lunch yet (it was almost 2pm by then), so i ended up eating at the cafe, where my 2nd aunt showed up with some leftovers and my father made kung pao chicken again. my sister also made some meatball cabbage soup with her pressure cooker.

i returned home by 2:30pm (i saw my aunt pulling up in her car before i left the cafe). the latest forecast said the rain would end by 3:15pm, but when i checked again, it said it'd continue raining until 5pm. there would be no haymarket trip today.

as i was home with nothing to do due to the rain, i broke into my stockpile of downloaded movies and shows. i watched gas pump girls (1979), an early precursor of the sex comedies that would be an 80's staple. i also started watching HBO's gentleman jack.

unlike yesterday when i was very disciplined, i couldn't help myself from snacking today, eating a whole bag of spicy potato chips. i had a late dinner, some more pasta around 10pm, followed by a small container of rice pudding.