mornings waiting for work to start seems to go by so fast, regardless when i might wake up. now that i'm starting my shift earlier (12pm instead of 12:30pm) just so i'm not working after sundown, i have even less morning times. 30 minutes of which is now spent copying down the list of addresses and reordering them instead of the scattershot way the census app orders the cases.
i ran no errands this morning, didn't seem to be enough time. i had an early lunch, made some chicken sausage oatmeal again. there should be a rule that your lunch can't be more complicated than dinner. so many steps go into a bowl of savory oatmeal, but i've made it enough times that i don't even notice. i finished my lunch by 11:30am, with a half hour left before i had to go. at the last moment i changed from pants to shorts, as it seemed a bit warm (80's) and i didn't want to be sweating.
trowbridge and harvard street are far enough away from me that i needed to take the bike. but i just parked it in one spot and walked the rest of the time. there were several large apartment buildings i had to enumerate. i hate those because there's nothing i can do if i can't get inside, so it's either pressing all the buzzers until somebody buzzes me in or waiting until someone leaves or goes inside and i surreptitiously follow behind. i was pretty lucky today, managed to get into all the apartments i was assigned. it's a little patient and a little luck. the last apartment of the day i could not figure out how to get in until i turned around and asked an israeli family having an outdoor picnic if they filled out their census survey yet. they didn't, asked if they could do it online, i gave the husband a notice-of-visit form with their special code, and in return i asked if he could let me into the apartment. at first he was hesitant, but then changed his mind and told me to come around to the back entrance where he let me in. they were speaking hebrew which i couldn't recognize, he was surprised i didn't know it, he said there were many israelis living in cambridge.
the highlight of the day was an ethiopian woman inviting me into her apartment. i felt bad wearing my shoes and i was going to take them off, but she took out a can of lysol and sprayed the bottom of it. not sure if that did anything, but it was a kind gesture. it was just herself and her mother living in the unit, her mother's birthdate nearly the same as my mother's. later i knocked on her door again to be a proxy for her neighbor, whom she told me was just one man living there alone.
i got 10 interviews today, a farcry from yesterday when i only had 3 completed interviews. apartment buildings are a treasure trove of interviews, the key is to knock on doors, because it's easier to ignore people when they're just ringing the intercom buzzer. half of my interviews today were asians, particularly chinese. whenever i knock on their door, the first thing they tell me is they're not US citizens; somehow they think they don't need to participate in the census if they're not a citizen. i tell them - sometimes in english, sometimes in mandarin - that the census is a population count, and there are no citizenship questions, that everyone gets counted if they're living in the US on april 1st, even foreigners. with chinese respondents, mandarin is my secret weapon. like today, there was a woman who seemed reluctant to answer, but she already answered the door, so i pushed a little more, switching to mandarin for the hard sell. she ended up agreeing after i told her it'd just take a few minutes, and would mostly likely stop future census workers from visiting (though no promises). also in one of the apartments i followed a guy into the building, on the pretense of asking him if he was on my case list. turns out he was, so he ended up being one of the interviews.
scary moment of the day came in the early evening, when i was trying to find an address. it lead me to the back of the apartment building, in the parking lot, where they seemed to be a tiny house with a doorbell but no mailbox and no address number. i went to investigate and was surprised to find a rabbit convulsing behind a car. it didn't seem to be injured physically, maybe it accidentally ingested poison. today wasn't that hot either, so it was heat stroke. maybe it got hit by a car in the parking lot and had some internal injuries. in any case, it was kind of scary, and in my mind i wondered if rabbits can get rabies. it crawled behind the rear wheel of a parked car. fearing for the rabbit's safety, i left a note on the windshield, warning the car owner that there was a car underneath wheel. normally i hate rabbits, but i don't like seeing animals suffer, and i certainly didn't want to see it accidentally get crushed.
i took a my official break at 4:45pm with just 15 minutes left before the 5 hours work maximum. funny thing was i couldn't remember where i parked my bicycle, and thought maybe somebody had stolen it, although why anyone would steal that junky bike is beyond me. honestly, that bike is theft proof: junky, old, and i use a u-lock with a braided cable for the front wheel, so it'd be a challenge to steal, especially during the daytime. i was relieved when i finally found it and raced back home to use the bathroom, take a shower, charge my phone, and replenish my fluids. it wasn't that hot today, i never once touched my contigo mug.
i finally stopped work at 7:45pm, just 15 minutes left before i hit the 8 hour daily work maximum amount. i could've stopped working at 7pm, would still have give me 7 hours, but being in an apartment is an easy way to lose track of time, which for enumerating is a good thing. plus i was mining some good interviews, i wanted to milk it for all its worth.
i got home by 8pm, bumped into my next door architect neighbor who rents out his 3rd floor unit. i asked him about the chongqing project, they were supposed to fly there for the grand opening back in the spring, but the coronavirus put a stop to all that. first china was on lockdown, and when things were clearing up, the US had its outbreak. somebody had thrown out a wooden bar stool right outside my house. i ended up taking it, figured i could give it to my parents. it was in good condition, a little dusty and some cobwebs, but otherwise in good shape. i flipped it over and saw the ikea tag. it looks to be an ikea ingolf ($59) in natural color.
i had 25 active cases left, with 53 inactives. that meant i only cleared 22 cases, which is about average regardless when i work a 7 hour shift. i did have more interviews today, which take longer to process. i don't think the census would complain about that.
after a shower, i grilled a chicken patty in the foreman and made myself a chicken sandwich, with melted parmesan cheese, sliced onions, sliced tomatoes, sliced shishito peppers, and some ketchup. it was a good sandwich, but i was still hungry afterwards, so i had a maruchan instant cup of noodles (beef).
i watched night 2 of the democrat convention. tonight they did the roll call, which each state got a change to give a little speech before announcing how many delegates won by each candidate (biden and sanders). everyone did theirs remotely, some pre-taped, some seemingly live, it was pretty cool seeing each state's representation, far better than the way they used to do it where people crowd in a convention center. they should change it so it's like this from now on.