maybe it was that taste of freedom on monday when the census didn't assign me any cases, and learning yesterday that some fellow enumerators didn't have any work, that made me yearn for another no case day. when i received my assignments last night i was actually kind of disappointed. 97 cases total, 100 less than yesterday. once again, i'd be lucky if i can get through half of those cases.

this morning i took a closer look at my latest cases. a good many of them were repeats from yesterday, ones i tried but couldn't complete, and ones i never got around to doing. it would rain for much of the rain, but thankfully most of the addresses were within walking distance, just a few that were further away (mid cambridge), that i would attempt when the rain was supposedly going to stop in the late afternoon.

leftover cases are hard to do, especially if they're ones i spent a lot of time aching over yesterday and then get reassigned again today. it's almost like the census is punishing me someone. i know these cases get recirculated, and somebody else has to tackle the ones i couldn't, but sometimes a fresh pair of eyes is better than retrying them again so soon after i tried them already.

the thought of a paycheck is the only thing that's driving me. the job itself isn't all that great, the cases are getting progressively harder, and not a day goes by where i don't daydream about quitting. i checked my bank account today and the latest census paycheck had already been deposited. to my surprise, there was $400 more than usual, which meant that i did qualify for the bonus pay after all. i couldn't quite figure out what portion based on the amount, i'll have to wait until my pay stubs arrive in the mail to find our for sure. that little bit of "carrot" gave me the energy to keep on doing this job.

i made an omelette for a late breakfast before heading out by 11:15am. census told me to work at 11:45am, and my previous supervisor told us we're not allowed to deviate from the scheduled start time anymore, but starting at 11:45am would mean i wouldn't be able to get back home until well after dark, and i promised myself i wouldn't work after sunset, so a big nope to that idea. i did however adjust my work availability, so now it's just 11am to 7pm, so hopefully they'll start me accordingly.

it was already drizzle as soon as i stepped outside. a good portion of census work is luck, especially at this stage. i was able to get a few proxy interviews today all because i stayed in an apartment foyer long enough for a neighbor to either leave or come home and they just happen to know some info about the cases in question. for the most part people are friendly towards the census, i only got a few bad apples today, and i've quickly forgot about them, remembering more the many good people. i must've received a few dozen thanks from proxies for the work i do.

one highlight today was returning to an address i tried yesterday. it was in a part of town where there are mansions instead of condos. the notes said the woman had been contacted multiple times, and promised to do her census, but the fact that i was there meant obviously she didn't. when i rang her doorbell yesterday and informed her we still hadn't received her questionnaire, she said "thank you for letting me know," before closing the door on my face before i could respond. i wasn't going to try her again today, but instead i managed to find a proxy in her next door neighbor. her neighbor couldn't believe they didn't fill out their census yet, because the couple are both very politically active and help out with the community. so i take satisfaction in knowing i added to the neighborhood gossip and now everyone will know them as the hypocrite family who didn't fill out their census.

i took my break around 4pm, stopping at bruce's place to get a container of codfish stew. this in addition to the rice bowl my father left at my place earlier in the day. the second half of my shift was a little hard. the rain had stopped, but transitioned to a fine mist that made everything damp, including my census forms. the trick is to find an apartment complex i can get inside and lose myself enumerating, they'll usually a good place to eat up an hour or two, depending on how many cases i have there. it'd also protect me from the elements.

i finally stopped working with about 10 minutes to go, just barely enough time for me to walk back home. it was already dusky, the fog made it seem even darker. i was just happy to get home, get out of these clothes, take a hot shower, have dinner.

i warmed up the codfish stew and microwaved the rice bowl. the stew smelled like clam chowder, minus the diary. i wasn't sure how i'd like it but it was very good, the combination of potatoes, tomatoes, and codfish working together to make a hearty soup. i told bruce that with a few additional ingredients (okra, sausages) it could be a gumbo. the codfish had a very sweet and savory flavor. i added some fresh ground pepper to additional spice.