we returned to belmont by 12:50pm. my mother had already taken the quiche out of the oven and we were ready to eat. everyone had a slice, including my sister who just happened to be there, while hailey was outside playing with the solar sprinkler. i don't think the quiche was terrible, but nobody really said anything.
i got a chance to assemble some mason jar solar fairy lights and set them outside to charge up the batteries for the evening light show. i think rounded top pint jars look the best; jelly jars seem too small, and recycled pasta sauce jars (which are compatible with mason jar lids) seem too big.
around 2pm my father got a line phone call from a taiwanese friend of his. this was unusual because it was the middle of the night in taiwan. turned out to be an emergency, the son of the friend's friend suffered a minor stroke today and was at the emergency ward of the beth israel deaconess hospital. the friend asked my father to check up on the son. i ended up going even though it was none of my business just so i could help navigate the route. we arrived by 3:30pm, got admittance into the emergency ward. the son - who didn't know us at all but knew my father's friend - was a 38-year old MIT postdoc who just arrived in boston a week ago. he somehow got himself to the hospital after suddenly developing an intense headache. he was lying on a hospital bed in a gown, a grimace on his face as he greeted us. he said the doctor told him there was a minor cerebral hemorrhage, but he still had all his motor skills and able to talk though seemed to be in pain. soon afterwards two doctors came, one of them an anesthesiologist. they were about to drug him up and take him to radiology for a procedure. because we weren't family, the doctors weren't able to give us anymore details. the other doctor asked him some simple questions to test his memory and motor functions, things like the date, his birthday, whether he can grasp with his hands. we stayed and watched but it felt a little invasive. finally it was time for them to take him away, we said our good byes and left.
we tried to validate our parking ticket but found out we'd actually parked in the brigham's parking lot by mistake (does beth israel even have their own parking garage?). so we went to brigham's next door but discovered they don't validate, just a fixed $8/day parking fee (or maybe it's weekend rates). by that point my father had also contacted the son's father, who was still waiting anxiously back home in taiwan. he told him his condition, and assured him that he was in safe hands, one of the top 10 hospitals in boston. later today an aunt of his was also coming up to boston from new york city, so at least he'll have some family to keep him company. his father said he was flying to boston tomorrow as well, though he won't get here until monday morning at the earliest.
we didn't get back to belmont until almost 5pm. today was a hot day, more summer than fall. it will only get hotter within the next few days.
after dinner, i waited for it to get dark enough for the solar lights to turn on. there was a time not so long ago (2010) where i had solar garden light fever and bought several boxes for the backyard. they last a few seasons, but the weather eventually took its toll on them, as the batteries wore out and the panels became cloudy. some of them can probably be revived as they lay in a box in the garage, but my new obsession are mason jar solar string lights. i just happened to have found a box of discarded mason jars a few weeks ago.
the mason jar solar string lights definitely looked cool. one or two of them didn't light up because the battery didn't have enough time to charge up completely today. they'd even be cooler if they could somehow blink softly on and off like fireflies. it'd also be cool if they came in different colors, though it'd be an easy modification to make, splice some alternate colored string lights to the solar charging lid. 10 LED's is definitely enough, gives just enough brightness while at the same time conserving battery life so longer lasting nightly illumination. they sell these solar mason jar lids with 20 and 30-strand LED's but i think that's just overkill unless you have a really large mason jar you want to light up.