i woke up early this morning, my mind trying to figure out how to fix the hole in my bathroom wall. because that's the most important thing i have to get done right now, naturally i would try to procrastinate and ended up doing everything but that.

i collected my nigella seeds. i tried using a strainer to make the work easier, but the seeds are just too big. i was also tempted to eat the seeds for some reason. i went online and did a search for "are nigella seeds edible?" i was surprised to find the answer was yes. they're also known as onion seeds, black cumin, or kalongi (hindi). out of curiosity i tried tasting a seed. it was actually surprisingly soft yet crunchy, with a flavor i can't quite identify. if you didn't tell me, i would've guessed they were just black sesame seeds. of course i'm not in the habit of eating these seeds, i'm saving them to plant for next season.

in the late morning i biked to belmont to collect the barbecued corn i forgot to take with me last night. along the way i saw two red tullsta chairs. i only caught a glimpse, they seemed to be in working condition, but the seat cushions were missing. nevertheless, if the slipcover is in good condition, i could reuse those. i made a note of the location and promised myself i'd come back afterwards.

i made it to belmont in just 15 minutes. i grabbed the corn from the fridge, but couldn't resist going outside and taking a quick peek of the garden. in the mornings the jasmine flowers are still open and fragrant. the cherokee sun rudbeckias are starting to straighten out after i supported them with tomato cages. the southwestern goldenrods are starting to bloom. is the newly emerged buttercup squash in RB1 growing any bigger? if yes, then it's a race against time to see if it can mature before the growing season ends for squashes sometime in october.

back at home, i went to go check on those red tullsta chairs, but they were already gone. not because somebody took them, but because the trash trucks came and tossed them out. in hindsight i should've taken the chairs first before going to belmont, i could kick myself for making a rookie mistake. who knows, maybe those chairs were in bad condition and not worth saving. later i found out that amazon is now selling tullsta slipcovers. previously the only way to get them was through etsy or ebay, and they were expensive custom jobs, $60+. the ones on amazon are around $35.

for lunch i ate one of the barbecued corn.

in the afternoon i took down my AC, figured we're not going to be getting anymore heatwaves. this also closed a key port of entry for insects like mosquitoes, at least that's what i believe. before i could move it down into the basement, i first had to clear a spot. when i went into the backyard, i saw renee had a group of people hanging out on her backyard deck. even joel was there. it took me a second before i remember today is rosh hashanah.

in the basement i had a plastic recycle bin underneath the plumbing leaking. what surprised me was even after a month, there was still water in the bin. was this new water or old water that just didn't evaporate yet? i rinsed out the bin with a hose then put it back with steve's stuff. if the pipes are somehow still leaking, i'll notice it because the floor will be wet. steve's used carpet has dried up though, i laid it flat again. i finally brought down the AC but i'm going to feel it tomorrow because i was lifting with my back and not with my legs.

i went to the community garden to check on my bitter melons. the white one had turned orange and split open, all its seeds gone. i found a few in the dirt below, but most of them were gone. did some animal eat them? i should've checked earlier, i haven't been in the garden since saturday. judging from the condition of the bitter melon, it must've split open either sunday or monday. there's another white melon, about half the size, hopefully i can collect some seeds from that one as well. i totally forgot to check if the mantises were still there, i'll do that next time.

afterwards i went to market basket to get some groceries. i decided to make a quiche for dinner, so i needed pie crusts, cheeses, and ham.

around 4pm i went out one last time, this time to the cambridge recycling center, to drop off an old mac laptop battery and a pair of used UV fluorescent tubes. there was already a line of cars waiting outside to get in. the public works guys were helpful but clueless, as the person who's usually in charge of the recycling center didn't show up for work today. i brought a face mask but accidentally ripped one of the straps so i couldn't wear it anymore. i ended up making my own piles then left.

john got in touch with me in the early evening, asked me if i was willing to do him a huge favor by coming up to saratoga springs this weekend to make sure the livestream of his mother's funeral service will go off without a hitch. i immediately agreed. he said they would pay me along with my accommodations, but so long as i have a place to sleep, i don't care about anything else. it's a 3+ hours long drive but i've driven longer distances. i once drove down to NJ and back in a single day for david's wedding. it'd also give me a change to visit some roadside diners and uncommon restaurant franchises we don't have in the boston area. i haven't seen john in a few years, and even longer for his family. just wish it was under happier circumstances.

spinach ham quiche
(6 slices)

pie crust ($2.50/pair)
flour (coating dish)

onion, chopped (58¢)
10 oz. frozen spinach ($1.19)
8 oz. diced ham (16 oz. $3.29)
fresh ground pepper

15 oz. ricotta ($1.50)
8 oz. mozzarella ($2.19)
3 oz. parmesan (6 oz. package)
2.5 oz. gorgonzola (5 oz. $1.99)

3 eggs

preheat oven to 350°F. sprinkle flour into pie dish before layering pie crust. sauté chopped onion and ham in butter. add defrosted and drained spinach and cook until dry. mix cheeses with eggs, then add in spinach mixture. pour into pie crust then bake for 40 minutes. let stand for 30 minutes (the longer the better, otherwise quiche will be gooey).

with the weather turning colder (though it's actually going to be in the 80's tomorrow), it's perfect weather for baking a quiche. i followed this tried-and-true recipe i've used for years with slight modifications. this time around i chopped up a small tomato and added it into the mixture at the last minute, just for some variety. i baked it for 40 minutes and left it to cool for 30 minutes. even then it was still very runny. it was super flavorful, the parmesan, blue cheese, and ham adding just enough saltiness (maybe too much), and all the cheeses combined makes for a very savory dish. i had two slices and was so full afterwards i didn't even have the smallest urge to snack like i do most nights. nothing like a dose of proteins to make you feel full. next week i might try some bean and rice recipe.