i watered my community garden plot and backyard this morning. the weather was overcast but warm, with a soupy humidity. for some reason there was zero pressure in the hose. i checked the faucet just to make sure and there seems to be something wrong with the plumbing. i trickled water my plot the best i could. it was so humid, the plants weren't in any danger of drying out anyway. i went around the rest of the community garden taking photos of the irises and columbines before finally walking home, where i then watered my yard, front and back.
ever since itchy dermatitis has taken over my whole right hand, i've been paranoid about everything i touch. i strongly suspect that the arms of the sofa chair i usually sit in has been tainted with whatever chemical that's causing my condition, so i've managed to avoid touching that. basically i go about my daily business with my hands raised, trying to avoid touching anything. last night i slept in an arms-outstretched cross-position so i wouldn't accidentally scratch my hand. i've discovered that if i can avoid scratching, the itch is bearable. if i scratch just a little bit, the instinct to keep on scratching to relief the itch is so powerful i end up scratching my whole hand which makes it worse.
i've got a little bit of the dermatitis on my left hand but because i never scratch that, it's been manageable and hasn't been a problem, and has slowly disappeared without drama. the right hand though, that's a mess. the whole palm was encrusted in hard itchy blisters. one of the blisters was weeping today, kind of a strange experience milking fluids from your hand. once i got back home, i soaked my garden gloves in some oxiclean and later hung them out in the backyard to dry (not sure how well that'll do given the humidity).
i didn't think i had enough chicken salad so i made some avocado spread as well. my avocados are starting to go bad, no longer fluorescent green, but rather drab olive. it was still edible though, if you can overlook the color. i ended up having enough chicken salad but i already prepared the avocado, so i had this weird combo bagel sandwich. it didn't taste bad but messy to eat.
in the early afternoon i went to market basket. i was prepared to wait 30-40 minutes in line, so i was surprised to find no line at all. they even did away with the shopping cart barrier, so maybe this is a permanent thing. there was a good number of customers but still light compared to the typical market basket crowd. signs of things getting back to normal: they had yeast, but not the usual fleischmann brand. i checked the prices on chicken wings after i heard a while back the prices were dropping since so many restaurants were closed; it was $3.29/lbs. still a little expensive. i also stocked up some frozen orange juices. i used my grocery bags to carry my things, buying mostly supplies for my parents, only getting some mozzarella cheese for myself. my mother asked me to buy some pork hocks, i was going to get two packages but saw the sign limiting customers to only 2 meat items. since i was also getting some ground pork, i put back one of the hocks. when i went to go pay, i didn't know if the cashier was going to help me bag, so i asked her if i could do it. she said okay, but because i used my own bags, she wasn't allowed to help me.
once back at home, i went out again to star market, to grab some sale items before the new sales beginning tomorrow. that included some B&M baked beans (99¢) and hÃ¤agen-dazs ice cream ($2.99, i got all the classic favorites: butter pecan, rum raisin, pistachio - no vanilla bean or any of the spirit flavors though).
i packed the groceries into my saddlebags and rode off to belmont to drop them off. i also brought my laptop because i wanted to ask if my parents tried applying to the cambridge small business grant. my mother said maybe my sister already did but when she called her she said she didn't. the deadline was tomorrow, so i helped my parents fill out the online form. when we finally go to the end, it asked for copies of their 2018 and 2019 schedule C forms which they only had in paper format.
i got on my motorcycle and went back to cambridge to grab my scanner before returning. i bumped into bruce who was coming back from a grocery run. he said they already installed their AC unit. for me that'd be early, but on a day like today, that'd be quite the relief. by the time i got back to belmont (less than 30 minutes), my father had already mowed the front lawn and was about to mow the backyard as well.
afterwards when we inspected the garden, i spotted a bunny. one bunny means there's more and we saw a second one. we drove it to the southeastern corner of the yard where they escaped through a large crack in the fence (probably how they came in). we put some chicken wire in the corner to keep them from coming back. but afterwards i thrashed the spiderwort and ornamental grass ground cover with a bamboo pole and a 3rd bunny popped out. my father and i chased it throughout the backyard, from one side to another, hoping to drive it out. i even removed the chickenwire so it could escape from the corner crack. finally it ran to the northwestern corner of the backyard where it probably escaped through another corner opening. i ended up patching both with chickenwire. later i found out my parents actually saw one of the bunnies yesterday. it didn't seem to be afraid of humans, maybe it was too young to know the danger.
i was going to go home but ended up staying for dinner, where my mother already cooked the pork hocks. as for the ground pork, she said she was going to make chinese dumplings this weekend, and told me to collect the remaining garlic chives from my garden plot.
i returned home, still warm enough to just wear a t-shirt on the bike. once back, i tried to remove my motorcycle handlebar clock which had gone dead after the bike had been in storage for the past 5 months. i tried every single hex wrench i had, going out half a dozen time, but none of them were the right size. it must use an irregular size hex. but then i tried one of the allen wrench on my topeak alien ii bike multi-tool and that one worked (for the record, it's 2.5mm). i opened up the casing, it's a small 377A battery. i had one in my watch battery collection but it'd already started to corrode from age. i ended up getting some new ones off of ebay, a pair of 377 renata watch batteries for $1.81 (due to arrive by next friday). 377 are better because they're silver oxide, compared to the 377A which are alkaline.
steve sent me an e-mail today, asking if i wouldn't mind turning down the thermostat on his water heater. coincidentally, i was just thinking that exact same thing today, wondering if i shouldn't send him a note asking if they wanted me to turn down the temperature since they're not here. seems like he's never done it before, because he kept talking about a "vacation setting" on the dial when actually it was just a bunch of dots. after i turned it down to the lowest setting, i texted him a photo confirmation.
today we didn't break the 30kWh barrier, which may prevent us from achieving the all-time single month production record. we came close though, hopefully one of the remaining may days will pick up the slack. nevertheless, 28.07kWh is still an accomplishment given how cloudy it was today. just goes to show you, with the sun angle as it is, and the increased daytime length, even on off days we do better compared to a similarly cloudy day back during the winter.
i didn't see kevin for most of the day, although i certainly heard him exercising loudly in his bedroom, occasionally crashing into the furniture and the door. i was waiting for him to go to bed before i did, but he didn't sleep until almost 2am.