i woke up at 8am this morning even though i could've slept late. instead of getting out of bed though, i surfed the web for an hour before finally getting up. today was the honkfest parade, historically the last parade event of the year. unlike the rain and overcast of yesterday, today's weather was classic fall: blue sky with temperature in the upper 50's. after a shower i fresh squeezed 5 large navel oranges to make some juice for my mother. i then left the house around 11:20am, for the start of parade happening at 12pm.

like last time, i opted to walk instead of taking the bicycle, much easier to move around. i walked all the way down to davis square this time, so i could see the staging area and check out what was in store for today. i found a great spot to watch, on the wedge between elm and summer street. of course others thought so too, and eventually that spot became pretty crowded, but everyone still respected each others space. that is, with the except of this one tall photographer, who decided he would stand in front of me. like, literally in front of me so that his backpack was pushing up against me, even though he saw i was there to take photos as well. it's pretty much a dick move. i ended up tapping him on the shoulder and asked him not to block me view. he played dumb, like, "oh, was i doing that?" his assholeness really killed the vibe, and i ended up going further into davis square so i could catch the procession sooner without having to wait.

this year has been pretty lackluster for parades. from the pride parade in june (after a long hiatus), to the caribbean parades in boston and cambridge, they seem to feature less people. the honkfest this year was no different. i was hoping to see tufts students for justice in palestine in light of what happened in israel, but they smartly opted out of the parade as mainstream media is painting palestines in a very negative light. the tibetan groups have also been missing since last year, while the filipino groups showed up again this year. i'm probably also pretty jaded, after seeing so many parades over so many years.

after catching the procession coming out of davis square, i fast walked back to porter square towards the direction of harvard to catch the second half again (the first half was already too far gone, i couldn't catch it). i saw renee, who was marching in some womens' environmental group. i also bumped into maureen, who decided to chew me out for neglecting my garden plot, even after i spent some time weeding it last week. she said my goldenrods were encroaching on my back neighbor's plot - who by the way wasn't even there and maureen had been taking care of her plot for the past few weeks - and that they had killed some of her zinnias. "you wouldn't want somebody else's shit growing into your garden, would you?" she asked. i'm starting to get why she's the most hated person in the community garden.

instead of following the procession into harvard square for the octoberfest (my 2nd aunt was actually there, judging from her shared location), i decided to go home. it was still early, a bit after 1pm. after packing up my things, i soon left for belmont.

my sister's car was outside the house. my father just happened to be outside as well, and told me, "the dog is in the backyard," which i already guessed from my sister's car. i went out into the backyard to see this new dog. i found her lounging on a pile of dirt underneath the grapevine shade. i went to pet her and she got the zoomies and starting running around the backyard. my sister named her esme.

originally i thought she was a retriever-rottweiler or retriever-doberman mix judging by her tricolor coat pattern, but my sister said the adoption agency told her the dog was a black-tan coonhound spaniel mix. black-tan coonhound i can see, but spaniel? maybe because of her soft coat, but that may just be puppy fur, which she'll outgrow once she matures. esme is 10 weeks old, which is slightly older than when my sister originally got hailey, who was 8 weeks.

esme looks similar to hailey but also different. for one thing her distinctive fur patterns: two tan diamonds on her chest, tan-white legs, tan-white throat, and tan spot on her butt. she's also more playful and friendly to the point of being disobedient, chewing on everything she can put in her mouth, chasing after balls. at one point she even poked her head inside of a bag and took out a chew stick. it's been a while since we had a puppy, forgot how much energy they have. hailey in her final years lost interest in the many things she used to love: water, snow, bubbles, chasing after critters. old dog just don't have that young dog energy. esme also had these really big paws, which i don't know if it means she'll grow up to become a large dog.

on esme's head are three bald spots which appear to be healing puncture marks. the adoption agency that brought her in shaved a bit of her fur and the wounds have scabbed over. nobody knows how she got them. we're hoping the fur on those spots will grow back once she completely heals. they don't affect her otherwise, she doesn't seem to be in any pain or suffering any lingering trauma from the injury.

in all the time we were with her in the backyard, we never heard her bark, which is a good thing (we don't want a yapping dog). i did hear her growling a little bit when she was digging in the soil. esme seems to be a very curious dog. of course everything is new to a puppy, but often times we'd watch her tilting her head, listening to some sound. the rapid clicks of my camera shutter caught her attention, and she would come over whenever i took her photo. also the sound of a plane flying overhead, or even the noises from a television, they all catch her attention.

esme likes to hide underneath things, whether it's a lawn chair or a picnic table. maybe it gives her a sense of security to be inside of an enclosure-like structure. at one point she tried going up the stairs. she got all the way to the second to last stairs before she stopped, and then couldn't get up any higher because she was too small to reach the final landing (she managed to get up those original steps because she ran up).

my sister brought esme inside while she prepared her transportation cage. earlier, my mother had put all her shoes on the chair, to prevent esme from using them as chew toys. i was following esme around the house, keeping an eye on her, making sure she didn't get into any trouble. then all of a sudden in the dining area, i saw her squat and pee on the rug. it happened so fast, i couldn't stop it in time. i ended up the one having to clean up the pee spot. after that esme seemed tuckered out from all the running she did in the backyard. my sister said puppies can sleep as much as 20 hours a day. esme currently sleeps in a cage, until she can be potty trained. she plopped down on the living room rug, her legs all splayed out, quickly falling asleep on her stomach. my sister eventually took her home.

i ended up taking a bunch of photos of esme. puppies grow up quick, and it only takes a few weeks for them to lose their puppy cuteness.

earlier this morning my parents went to baifu in south boston to get supplies. as it was sunday, i tuned in to some footballs games. the saints-patriots game was a disaster; as if it couldn't be an worse than last week, the score today was 34-0. i couldn't even watch the game after learning of the score. my mother made two stirfries for dinner: chinese celery with tofu, and chicken with wood ear mushrooms. i returned home by 7:30pm.