i went to the cafe to return the ipad to my parents. i spent another late night playing around with it in bed, reading up on the history of synthetic blue pigments (prussian, egyptian, han, mayan) through the wikipanion app.

afterwards i biked to the mt.auburn cemetery to see the owls again. i was the only person there at first, but by then time i left there was about a dozen spectators. half of them had digital cameras, including a little old lady with a 500mm canon telephoto lens1 (wrapped in camouflage tape) that was half as tall as she was. another woman was passing around photos she'd taken of the chicks throughout the weeks, as if they were her own children. she was debating if one of the chicks might be a boy.

the baby owls look more mature since the last i saw them on wednesday. they've lost a lot of down feathers over the past few days, revealing more of the patterned flight feathers underneath. as fluffy as they seem, one still can't overlook the razor sharp beaks and claws.

i quietly left the birders and went wandering around the consecration dell. this being my 3rd visit to the cemetery this week, i had more time to take photos because i was by myself.

i saw what i thought were cedar waxwings but turned out to be a pair of mating flickers. there were also hermit thrushes2 but i didn't hear them sing. crows mobbed a red-tailed hawk, which came crashing through a nearby tree, before fleeing the chasing crows. at the entrance was a very tame tom turkey3, pecking through the well-manicured lawn. wild turkeys have the most amazing feathers but boy do they have an ugly-looking head!

i was hoping to get some more flower photos but many of the trees have already shed their blossoms. the only ones still putting on a show were the azaleas and rhododendron bushes.

i found the lone paulownia tree in the cemetery, but it hasn't blossomed yet (isn't it kind of late?) so i wonder if the tree is dead? i'll come back in a few weeks to check if there are any activities. i know there are a few paulownias at the arnold arboretum. there used to be a few on beacon street before the owners chopped them all down to make way for tall wooden fences.

i returned to the cafe to show my father some more apps that i'd installed. he says the ipad is fun to play with, but he still can't see how it can be useful. there's nothing you can do with the ipad that you can't do with a computer. i personally like it because i do a lot of websurfing, and it's just a different way to browse the internet. unfortunately it's also easy to lose track of time when i'm playing with the ipad, so it's a good thing i gave it back.

soon after i came home i left the house again to get some fresh baking yeast from market basket. for some reason they sold an 8 oz. jar version of the rapidrise yeast for the same price as the 4 oz. ($4.99).

for dinner i heated up some leftovers my mother gave me, a container of rice with some lion head meatballs. victor came home around 8:00 carrying some groceries. he must've gone and taken a nap because i didn't hear from him again until 10:00, when he woke up to make dinner.

i'd sworn off baseball this year (steroid controversy, losing record, overpaid underachieving players, painfully long games, etc.) but when it's the only summer game in town (once basketball and hockey season are over) it's hard to turn away. even harder is when the home team is on a hot streak. the last i casually glanced at the standings a few weeks ago the red sox were last in their division. now they're just a half game behind first place (tampa bay). i still think of myself as a relapsed baseball fan, but i'm not so vehemently against the game anymore. sweeping the yankees last weekend helped, and it's always a guilty pleasure when our arch-nemesis is having problems. tonight in their weekend interleague series against the chicago cubs, boston won 15-5.

1 want to buy the canon 500mm f/4L IS USM telephoto lens? it costs $6900.

2 i'm pretty familiar with hermit thrushes, ever since one of them crashed into a window of my backyard deck and died back in 2009. somewhere underneath the porch i buried it. i like to think a ghost thrush still lives in my backyard.

3 turkey sightings are becoming more frequent, as they infiltrate our cities. just last month i had a turkey sighting at my parents' place, and prior to that near mt.ida college in newton. bruce even told me jack saw a turkey today as well, just a few streets down from us here in cambridge.