mike told me yesterday he'd be here this morning between 10-11am to pick up the 2nd check. waiting for him to come, it made me anxious enough that once more, i had a hard time with my morning poo. he called at 10:40am, said he was running late, wouldn't get here until 15 minutes later. it wasn't until 11:30am - when i was going to run the check to their inman square office because i couldn't wait anymore - that he finally showed up.

i went to the basement briefly to check out how much insulation i'd need to plug up the hole into my bathroom floor. i just needed a small amount it seems. coming out from the basement, i bumped into paul. i asked him how was his first night back in cambridge, he said it was like they didn't miss a beat. i had a feeling they'd need to do some grocery shopping as their fridge was completely empty; sure enough minutes later i saw them driving off, most likely to stock up on food.

it was 57 degrees inside my house this morning. that's because i still haven't turned on my heat yet. however, inside my bathroom, it was a toasty 65 degrees. how could this be? turns out having exposed pipes in my bathroom means i get residual warming from the hot water heating pipes going upstairs. the pipes themselves are nearly 80 degrees. the bathroom would be a fun place to stay if the smell of iron dust wasn't so strong.

i called chip-in farm to ask about the chicken manure. i figured they were all out, given it's already november, but wouldn't hurt to find out for sure, then we can start sourcing other forms of natural fertilizer. a woman answered the phone, she said they just got more chicken manure, and there's plenty available. so i called my father to let him know the good news. i told him i'd drive out to bedford to buy the manure, then stop by binbin's house to turn on the heat.

while i was using the bathroom (finally relaxed enough to have my poo), my father called me. he said he was free to pick up the chicken manure as well, and could come and pick me up around noontime.

we went to binbin's house first, got there by 1pm. we stayed for about 20 minutes. i went to the various floors to adjust the timers. i turned off the water to the outdoor spigot. i turned on the heat, set it to 55 degrees. it's been over 2 years now since they left. who knows when they'll come back? i just feel bad for their neighbor thomas who keeps on having to pick up the mail for them. i hope when they do come back that they get him a nice gift for all his troubles.

from burlington it was a 15 minutes drive to bedford, to chip-in farm. it was kind of hidden, and we actually drove right by it, the entrance looking more like a residential driveway. inside though was a large property. we spotted the bags of chicken manure right away, piled up on a wooden trailer. prices had gone up, originally they were $6 a bag. an asian woman was loading up the manure into her minivan. a man came out of the store to help her. when my father and i went inside, there was nobody around, so it seems the man was by himself.

originally we were just going to get 6-7 bags, but my father asked for 8 bags. the man helped us load the manure into the back of the honda, on top of a tarp. afterwards i went inside to pay, apparently a woman was also working there (probably the one i spoke to over the phone). goats were grazing in a nearby field, a coin-operated dispenser with goat food for feeding. next to the field was a barn which was also the petting zoo, although a signed said not to pet the animals inside. there were more goats, and sheeps, and a rabbit, a baby cow, a pig. while we were leaving, another asian person pulled up by the chicken manure. what is it with asians and chicken manure?

we left the way we came in, getting onto 95 and then connecting to route 2. there was a smell in the car that i realized was the bags of chicken manure in the back. it wasn't a bad smell, but a strong smell. we drove with the windows opened. on the way to my parents' house, we stopped at hillside garden ace hardware so i can pick up some salt marsh grass. apparently they're having a hard time getting a supply, so in the meantime they have large bundles of straw for $16.

we got to my parents' place by 2:20pm, starting unloading the 8 bags of chicken manure. i thought they'd be light, but each bag was actually pretty heavy, i'm guessing 25 lbs. my father used a handtruck to move 3 bags at a time into the backyard. one of the bags had a small rip and some chicken manure got onto the tarp. i took a sniff and it definitely smelled like poop. not like human poop or dog poop, but definitely fecal in nature. i spray cleaned the tarp with the hose.

i grabbed the staple gun and my father found a box of staples in the garage. i also got the bottle of iron remover to remove some rust dust stains in my bathroom. the fudingzhu osmanthus was back in the living room, with more flowers though they weren't fragrant unless you got close.

my father gave me a ride back to my house, i got there by 2:50pm. i went to go use the bathroom one more time, hoping with less interruptions or stresses i could perform better.

i went out soon afterwards, to market basket to get some groceries. the week is already over and i'm only now getting groceries. i noticed some dramatic clouds and conditions were perfect for some drone flying. one of the things i wanted to do with my drone when i first got it was to get some sweet autumn foliage color shots. however while driving on the highway today, i noticed a lot of trees were already post-peak. i should've been out every day in october gathering drone photos! anyway, picked up a few things from the supermarket, including a container of greek salad for just $3.50.

when i got back home i whipped up some homemade greek salad dressing: equal parts red wine vinegar to olive oil, oregano, salt, dijon mustard, minced garlic, crushed peppers. i added all the ingredients into a jar and shook it until everything emulsified. the salad was good, but i realized it was dumb choice of food: who eats a cold salad inside of a cold house? next time, go with something warm!

i took a break for an hour. i scanned the plumbing invoice and finally figured out how much my upstairs neighbors owe me before sending them an e-mail. our orchid containers arrived a few days ago, but they're missing the matching saucers. i contacted amazon for a replacement, they're due to arrive tomorrow.

at 5:30pm i started cleaning my bathroom once again. the rust dust is pervasive even if i can't see it. i basically wiped down everything in the bathroom, from the walls to the ceiling. i was afraid the rust smudges on the walls and ceiling wouldn't come off, but i made the right choice when i decided to go with a semi-gloss finish on everything in the bathroom; it's more protective against moisture and easier to clean, just wipe away. i also added some pink insulation into the top and bottom of the drywall box; tomorrow i'll add more insulation from the basement. i cut a piece of foam tubing and used it to wrap around the upstairs heating pipes which were touching the electrical cord of a wall outlet. finally i took down the shower curtains and gave them a good scrubbing. i didn't want to use any harsh chemicals, so i used used baking soda instead as an abrasive. i wore dishwashing gloves as my fingers are already frayed and damaged from cleaning with my bare hands the past few days. i was finally done by 7:30pm.

i finally turned on my heat today, beginning at 6pm. it was already 57 degrees in my house. i could probably bear it for a few more days, but why suffer needlessly? there was the smell of burning, which is the inaugural scent announcing the start of the heating season. i'll let it run for a few days before changing out the old furnace filter. combined with the exposed upstairs heating pipes, it was sweltering in the bathroom. i was already working in just a t-shirt and underwear, and thought about going completely topless because it was so hot in there.

when evening arrived i was particularly hungry. i heated up some soup from a can then had a white peach. i watched the celtics-heats game, boston managed to beat miami. i don't think it was anything the celtics were doing, the heat seemed to be missing every bucket, going through a team-wide shooting slump. they probably also underestimated the celtics, figured with our losing record, it'd be easy to beat us, but they were wrong.