i wasn't looking for a ride this morning - i was looking forward to taking my motorcycle on a cold winter's day, temperature in the 20's, wind chill in the 10's. i imagined the great time lapse video i could shoot on my way home, plumes of condensation coming out of my mouth like a fire-breathing dragon. alas, my father called me this morning, said he was at the cafe, and could swing by and give me a ride to belmont. the frozen puddles alongside the curb reminded me of the frozen bog water. what determines the pattern on an icy puddle's surface? maybe it's the leaves underneath, because i've also seen puddles where there lines like a contour elevation map. this winter i will study icy puddles.

we noticed it yesterday but at least one our basement orchids has a flower spike. they should be making them this time of the year, because at my aunt's place she already has a flower spike with several large flower buds ready to blossom soon. sitting on a windowsill is probably more conducive to flowering, with the cold temperature and the contraction of sunlight. as for our own orchids - living in the basement with artificial light - they will flower eventually, just at a later date. i noticed some growth on the other orchids that could either be a root or an emerging flower spike, only time will tell. one thing i have to remember is to keep them facing in the same direction, otherwise the flower buds will not face in the same direction.

my mother made rice noodles again for lunch. the broth was just the right amount of saltiness and the addition of zucchini slices (falling apart but absorbing more of that savory broth) made it even better. a dollop of vietnamese garlic hot sauce gave it the right amount of kick. i ate while watching the noontime news on my phone.

the 3.7v 2000mAh lithium ion rechargeable batteries finally arrived from china after more than 2 months. i almost opened a case on ebay regarding undelivered merchandise but i'm glad i held off. the batteries weren't cheap - $6.60 each - but cheaper than buying from a US source. we got them to replace the old lithium ion batteries on a pair of solar-powered security lights. my father spliced the new battery into place and soldered the wire leads. however, neither of them lit up. also when he took a voltage reading, it read 0.9V once connected to the circuit board, instead of the 3.7V when disconnected. there might be a voltage regulator on the circuit.

after my mother came back from her daily walk, she gave me a haircut in the kitchen. i get two haircuts a year: once in the fall, once in the spring. the rest of the time i let it grow. fall, so i'll some hair by wintertime to keep my warm, and spring, so i can stay cooler during the summertime. my mother said i have a bald spot on the top of my head, starting to lose my hair! nothing i can do about it, just accept the inevitable.

cold weather brings the birds to the feeder. there was a flock of junco - dark grey and browns - pecking on the ground below the feeders. one of them even perched on the squirrel buster to get seeds, while another landed on top of the suet feeder and pecked at the suet. i've always thought of juncos as simple ground feeders. there was also a female cardinal. it's unusual because usually cardinals come in pairs. what happened to the male? i only ever see this one female. there was a song sparrow, followed by a pair of white-throated sparrows. the white-throats were kind of aggressive, chasing the other birds away. i didn't see any chickadees nor any downy woodpeckers, those usually come to the feeders. i wonder if someone else has a feeder with better food, and those birds are going elsewhere.

when my father went down into the basement to prepare the pilea for my godmother (he was looking for the osmocote slow-release fertilizer pellets), i followed him and together we added another shelf to the steel wire racks in the basement currently housing various pots and dishes. we had 3 additional shelves, but two of them i found on the street last year and they're slightly smaller than the NSF-certified wire shelvings we currently have. so we only managed to install one additional shelf. we may split apart one of the 2 wire racks currently be used to house our potted jasmines, and then replace it with the found shelving unit.

my mother made two simply stirfry dishes for dinner. afterwards my father gave me a ride back to cambridge.

i mounted the gopro so it'd shoot a time lapse (1 sec interval) instead of a time warp. i noticed in time warp videos the camera tends to "swing" in order to level the background. i think when you already have something steady for most of the foreground, it's better to just shoot a time lapse.

the monday night football game was between the browns and steelers. this was ben roethlisberger final game in pittsburgh (barring some miracle where they get into the playoffs), as the big open secret is he's retiring after this season. it made me think of tom brady, when he finally retires from football, will the tampa bay fans cheer him as loudly compare to if he never left new england and how much pats fans would cheer for him?

i have a crown procedure tomorrow at the park street dentist. the appointment is for 11am, so i don't have to wake up too early in order to make the appointment. the only thing i'm not looking forward to is the cold, i heard morning temperatures might be in the teens. you want me to ride my bike in the freezing cold to get a dental procedure? with the omicron variant wandering about?

i caught the first episode of dickinson last night in bed before going to sleep. i really like it, i love hailee steinfeld, and i love emily dickinson. it's one of these anachronistic historical comedies, in the same vein as the great, another favorite of mine. anyone who loves kate bishop in hawkeye will love dickinson, steinfeld brings that same level of energy and wit. the series recently finished it's 3 season run on apple+, so i have something new to binge watch again.