in the morning i checked my phone intermittently, knowing that my mother should've arrived in taipei around 6am boston time. i did this by seeing her shared location on google map, which was a good sign, meant she turned on her phone and was able to get wifi. i figured she'd be on her way to my big aunt's house, but every time i checked, she was still at the airport. something must've gone wrong because she was there for 4 hours, until 10pm taiwan time. maybe somebody on the flight tested positive, and everyone was getting special quarantine in a government facility. but after 10pm i saw she was moving.

i went to the cafe a bit before 11am. my father was also checking my mother's location on google map. when it looked like she finally arrived at my big aunt's house, we called her via line to see what was going on.

my mother was in fact delayed at the airport for 4 hours. her plane - a boeing 777-300ER - has a seating capacity of 366 but there was just 70 passengers. everyone basically had their own row of seats to lie down like a bed. my mother took a sleeping pill and basically slept through the entire flight. at the airport they cleared pandemic protocol without any issues although the person giving her a PCR test with a brain tickler seemed like a novice and my mother said it hurt. but most of the people there were very courteous, and helped my mother sign up for an unlimited data phone plan, which is required so they can track her to make sure she doesn't break quarantine. when she finally went to go get her luggage, my mother discovered her suitcase was missing. luckily whoever took it didn't do it on purpose, and left their own suitcase behind, which looked just like my mother's. they managed to find out who the other person was from the flight manifest and luggage tag, but because it was already so late, they said they'd get in touch with the other person tomorrow to get back the luggage. finally only then did my mother and 2nd aunt get into a special pandemic taxi that look them to their quarantine housing AKA my big aunt's house.

my big aunt and cousin had been waiting for my mother. she cooked a big meal for them thinking they'd get here around dinner time. after briefly chatting with them, my big aunt left to go stay with my cousin while my mother and 2nd aunt used her house to quarantine (saving themselves some money since they didn't need to pay for a quarantine hotel).

today wasn't too busy, customers came in a manageable trickle. around noontime i checked the front door webcam at my parents' house and noticed the bunn coffee brewer had arrived. i took the car and drove to get it, the roundtrip took just 15 minutes. the old bunn machine had 2 water inlets (including a flow retrictor) while the new machine just had one. originally we thought need to buy a new 90° copper tube assembly to attach the water inlet to the machine (the tubing itself costs less than $5, but nearly all online places that carried it charged at around $15-20 for shipping), but my father managed to bend the old copper tubing into a compatible angle. however, he didn't have the right crescent wrench to attach the tubing to the bunn.

i rewrote the words on the plexiglass divider, this time using a white painter marker, which made it easier to clean the plexiglass without accidentally wiping off the words in the process. i tested it beforehand, the white paint is impervious to cleaners like windex, and can only be removed with alcohol (50% or above).

a marketer from grubhub came by the cafe today. my sister had already spoken with her a few weeks ago, she actually came to speak with my father, but he told me to talk with her instead. they're doing a promotional deal where the first 3 months they won't take a commission other than the 3% credit card fee per transaction. after that, there's a 10% commission per order on top of the 3% credit card fee. i always get the feeling that salespeople are lying to me, and whatever they're selling there's always a catch. but my sister really wants to do it. i need to do some research on my own before we can decide. the saleswoman gave us the hard sell, said they were leaving boston on friday.

i left the cafe by 2:40pm. after dropping off my things at home, i went to market basket to get some supplies for the cafe and a few things for myself, before returning home and picking up some tools and heading back to the cafe by 3:45pm. with the right wrench my father connected the water feed line to the bunn coffee brewer and we primed the coffee brewer. this entailed running the brew cycle 3 times to fill the tank to capacity. my father noticed the water level flowing into the carafe was low. however, when we ran a 4th brew cycle, the machine overflowed the carafe this time. this is because we weren't brewing any coffee - which typically would absorb a few ounces of water. the final test will be tomorrow morning, when my father will brew a pot of coffee. even though this model (CWTF15-3) only uses 120V, it's more than enough for what we need. it's rated to brew 3.9 gallons per hour, which is approximately 8 pots of coffee per hour; typically a single pot of coffee is more than enough to last an entire day.

i left the cafe again around 5:30pm.

steak fries
(2 trays)

russet potatoes
3 tsp salt
2 tsp vinegar

olive oil
3 tbsp corn starch
1/2 tsp baking powder
spice blend:

1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp ground pepper
1/2 tbsp paprika

preheat oven 425°. cut potatoes into wedges and boil medium heat with salt and vinegar until soft. remove wedges and pat dry. toss with olive oil, corn starch, baking powder, and spice blend. bake on oil-coated trays, 15 minutes per side.

for dinner i had one last serving of lentil soup i needed to finish. but because i had a large bag of russet potatoes, i decided to make some steak fries (like this). i used a delish recipe that looked promising. that took a while to make, i ended up boiling the potatoes for way too long so they were already crumbling. the recipe i used involved mixing the potato wedges with corn starch and baking powder to make them extra crunchy. i ate my lentil soup and fries while watching the end of the jazz-celtics game, boston won again in dominating fashion. the rest of the night the house smelled like baked potatoes.

i called my mother around 1am, which was 1pm taiwan time. she said neither my 2nd aunt or her went to sleep last night (jetlag), and that they were both going to take sleeping pills so they could sleep. i told her it was a bad idea, that the only way to counteract the effects of jetlag was to stay up during the daytime. besides, since they hadn't sleep at all, they wouldn't have any problems falling asleep from exhaustion alone. my mother told me she got her luggage back though, it arrived this morning. the person who took her suitcase was an old man in a wheelchair who probably had someone help him grab the luggage and didn't check it carefully enough to figure out it wasn't his. luckily he lived in the nearby town of jingmei, and the airport helped to get the suitcase back.