while the cafe continues to struggle with the countertop replacement drama, i woke up this morning around 9am to get ready for my tuesday run. i always try to leave early to beat the heat, but it seemed futile, as the temperature was already at 81°. i didn't get out of the house until 10:10am, just sidetracked with the cordless vacuum search on amazon that i started last time. being that it was amazon prime day today and tomorrow, a bunch of vacuums went on sale and i was looking at all of them.

i left listening to dan carlin's kings of kings podcast episode 2. the run took me a little longer than the typical hour because at one point my mother called me to remind me to buy a cordless vacuum for the cafe and when i came back home i talked with a stranger about an ongoing construction project that was happening in the neighborhood. so i didn't get home until 11:25am.

i was home for only 10 minutes - enough time to take a shower - but i went out again, this time to the cafe. i wanted to see for myself this new countertop and cabinetry, and hear firsthand why the plumber wasn't coming back today to finish the work he started yesterday. everything looked really nice, much better than i anticipated. so why did my mother tell me that they were replacing the countertop with more expensive marble? my mother said the current countertop was too cheap, and would deteriorate after just a short amount of time. my sister had talked my parents into upgrading to marble, and she'd already contacted the contractor who got her in touch with a marble guy who can have a new countertop ready by tomorrow. in the meantime, the cutout for the sink hadn't been made yet. i told them if let me know sooner, i could've ordered a stainless steel sink, since the one we're using is too small. for whatever reason, the new marble countertop comes with a larger sized sink, so at least my biggest concern had been addressed.

the other reason why i was at the cafe was to show my mother different cordless vacuum models i'd selected. my sister had brought her dyson cordless (V8) that is so precious to her she rarely lets us use it and takes it back as soon we're done. she said we should just get a cordless dyson. i have no doubt dyson products are innovative, but they are also super expensive. plus, we've already been tricked by dyson once before, when after considerable research i talked my parents into getting a dyson DC39 back in 2015. we used it for a while, but was never satisfied with its suction-capability (or lack thereof) nor its unwieldy design and difficulty storing. now my parents use a shark apex vacuum (since 2020), which is what i use as well (though a different model); better suction, easier to use, and easier to store away.

anyway, i'd been cordless vacuum researching since late last night, and already sort of knew what i wanted to get. besides the traditional brands (dyson, shark, eureka), there were a bunch of inexpensive chinese brands: prettycare, inse, tineco, buture, belife, dreametech, puppyoo, viomi, plus many others. some of them actually looked good (both design and specs-wise), and were inline with my decision criteria: strong suction, 200W+, canister that faced down instead of on top, and a vacuum stick that didn't collapse. i really like the viomi A9 ($200) and the puppyoo T11 ($159), but in the end i didn't go with them because i knew nothing about the companies and wanted something more reputable, especially if i needed to acquire future parts, like replacement HEPA filters or a new battery.

two companies i did know were eufy (where i source my webcams) and levoit (the same brand as my air purifier). eufy (a division of anker) makes good electronics, and its vacuum came with more attachments than most other brands. at the time the eufy S11 (with 2 batteries) was down to $170, but i just couldn't get over the on-the-top-canister, that was a deal breaker. that left me with the levoit vortexIQ 40 vacuum for $200. it checked all the boxes (strong suction, good design, bottom canister) but the thing that sold me was seeing a photo of the vacuum gripping a 6lbs. bowling ball. so after showing my mother the product photos and getting her blessing, i ordered the vacuum with the company credit card.

my mother had been clamoring for us to throw out the old living room couch, taking advantage of the dumpster, which will only be here until tomorrow before it gets haul away. my original plan was to go home, get some lunch, then meet up with my father in belmont around 3-4pm so we can dispose of the sofa. however, with both my 2nd aunt and sister at the cafe, my mother said my father could afford to leave, so we went to my parents' house by 2pm.

besides being old, the biggest issue with the old couch is the peeling faux leather, leaving bits of black crumbs whenever somebody sat on it. we managed to sort of remedy the situation by getting a slipcover last year, but that was just a bandaid.

before we started with the couch, we checked on the standing oscillating fan, the one that i reinforced with epoxy. it was already 24 hours and the epoxy should've cured by now. i tried wiggling the plastic "fin" piece, it felt very solid. we turned it on to test and see the fan was working - it seemed like new again - before reassembling the housing. one fixed fan ready to be put back into activity duty again!

only then did we start on the couch. it wasn't a simple matter of just moving it out. moving that thing into the house (can't remember the year) was a herculean task, one that involved several people and ended up scratching the door and the wall (which to this day haven't been fixed yet). there was no way we could easily move it out again, not with just two people, and not without damaging the house once more. because the couch was destined for the dumpster, the most logical choice was to cut it in half and move it out that way. cutting it in half wasn't so easy, and there are wooden frames and spring coils and seat cushions. we first removed the cushions, cutting them off, like filleting a chicken. we removed enough of the padding to reveal the frame. using a circular saw, my father proceded to cut the couch in half. it's a miracle neither of us got splinters or stabbed by a staple/nail. it took some doing but we eventually managed to cut the sofa into two pieces. i figured it'd take us two trips to move the pieces to the cafe dumpster, but we managed to fit everything into the honda element, minus a few loose frame pieces that we can either toss in the regular trash or my father can bring them to the dumpster tomorrow morning.

we got back to the cafe by 3:20pm, and tossed the flayed sofa into the dumpster. i had to climb to the edge of the dumpster to jostle the pieces so everything could fit inside. it's amazing how much junk we had from the basement, enough to fit up the dumpster, along with the old cafe countertop and cabinets. with that done, i was finally able to return home.

i spent the rest of the day in the house, trying to stay cool. i was also waiting for the much anticipated rainstorm that was supposed to come, as the sky darkened around 7pm. but to call that a storm is an insult to rain. there was a misting at most, enough to wet the top millimeter of surface before it all dried up. it's a shame, because i'd been watering this past weekend with the notion that we'd get enough rain today to refill the barrels, but that's not going to be the case. we may have to use belmont town water again to quench the plants.

i also fell asleep around 5:30pm, waking up 1-1/2 hours later. not getting enough sleep last night, the running this morning, the heat, and the battle with the sofa in the afternoon, all took their toll on me. i went to take a shower before throwing a frozen pizza in the oven for dinner. it was a screamin' sicilian pizza, supremus maximus supreme. i never had it before, it wasn't bad. i only ate half, had enough will power to resist the urge to eat the whole thing. i ate while watching the red sox game, it looked like they were going to win, but some sloppy play left them with another loss. when the team plays like crap, they really don't deserve to win.

i spent most of the day intermittently checking amazon for the latest deals. besides the vacuum, here's what else i bought today: container of kikkoman tonkatsu sauce ($18.50), 17 inch double sided magnetic knife holder ($23), fiskars extendable 25-33 inch hedge shear ($28), vornado 630 air circulator fan ($58), outlet power switch ($11), large display digital wall clock ($23), 12-pack solar pathway lights ($26), 31ft solar string lights with edison bulbs ($26), acacia wood universal knife holder ($28), and a microwave steamer ($17). in total i spent $469 today. looks like a win for amazon prime. there's still another day of it tomorrow! but i think i'm pretty much all bought out.