when i rode to belmont by around 9:30a, my father was outside with the snowblower. he was making some minor repairs: the string from the flywheel had ripped out and one of the tires was flat. around 10a we went to home depot to get some supplies: WD40, roof sealant, thinner, and some spray paint (glossy red and black). we stopped by a gas station to see if we could use the air machine. one of the mechanics helped us out instead, pumping up the tire with his air hose after spraying something on the wheel to help it form a seal. a younger mechanic came out and nodded in approval, "getting a head start on the winter!"

back at the home, we removed the snow chute so i could wipe down the blower with some WD40. we also sprayed the rusty hex wrenches with WD40 to derust them. my father left for the cafe soon afterwards. ideally we'd want to disassemble the whole snow blower so we can recoat some of the rusted edges with glossy red spray paint. as for the flywheel, i was able to rethread the rope using a pipe cleaning and some tape to keep the string from fraying.

for lunch, i found some more leftover sunday barbecue: a drumstick and a piece of corn. i watched the news while i ate.

as for painting, i went to all the windows and sanded all the patched nail holes from yesterday. i used a sand block wrapped with a piece of rough sandpaper. i think the house needed a light power wash before we can start painting. i still think in my heart that painting can be finished in a matter of weeks, much faster than sanding. and painting is a lot more rewarding than sanding; sanding you're actually making the house look worse, but painting you're beautifying the house. i think our neighbors would really like us to paint as well, they're probably tired of seeing this patchy house for more than a year.

i've been reading the martian by andy weir for the past 2 days, either on the computer or the phone. i was motivated by the movie, which is coming out next weekend. curiosity about the plot made me pick up the novel. it's a pretty good read, i find myself stealing some time whenever i can to read a chapter or two. influenced by the trailer, i find myself picturing matt damon or jessica chastain as the characters in the book. i've been on a reading kick recently. before the martian, i was reading frank herbert's dune. i've seen the movie and mini-series, so reading the book is like a third version of a favorite story.

ameriprise policy documents arrived today. i helped my mother fill them out and gather the necessary paperwork so all she had to do was sign and them mail them out tomorrow. progressive still hasn't contacted me about canceling their old auto policy after i sent a cancellation e-mail. i'll try again in a few more days.

when i returned to cambridge after dinner, ana was busy in the kitchen making croquetas. she actually started last night, making the filling, which is a blend of onions, blue cheese, flour, and milk. tonight, she was rolling them into round ovals, coating them in egg, and then breading them, before finally frying them. the whole messy procedure made me wince, but she made a few for me, so it wasn't all bad. it tasted like breaded fried blue cheese balls, i've never had it before, but they seem to be good appetizers, although just a hassle to make. ana told me next time she'll make some potato pancakes.

later in the evening when i threw out the trash, i noticed ana'd already used up a whole 1000ml bottle of olive oil.