lucas was supposed to show up at 11:40am but didn't get here until after 12pm. he had copies of documents for my parents to sign, one for him, one for us. the basic contract, followed by a warranty agreement, then a special document requested by mass solar loan for owners who generate more energy than they need promising we won't sell our excess electricity to other parties besides the utility company. it went quick. surprisingly, this contract was nonbinding, and no deposit was required as we were going through mass solar loan. lucas also requested that i send him a copy of the utility bill. while my father was getting my mother's signature, i chatted with lucas some more. he's from easton, and i told him i visited his town a few years back to see the richardsonian architecture. he told me he graduated school in 2015 (umass boston), which would make him only 24 years old if my math is correct.
i biked back home, swinging by the community garden to water my garden. city maintenance crew were installing a new front fence, pouring concrete around the metal posts. just yesterday i received a notice saying that the shrinking hose closest to my garden had burst once again. i was expecting to find the broken one today but anne marie had already replaced it with a brand new hose, another shrinking hose but a different brand, one that looks sturdier. hopefully this one will last longer than the others. who keeps on breaking these hoses anyway?
a new flourish of striped mallows were blooming from a plant that has up until now been rather quiet (late bloomer). as for the other mallows, not much flowers on them as they're now making seeds. judging from the amount of seed pods i'm expecting a lot of seeds this season, so expect to see more striped mallows in the future. hidden amongst my larkspurs is a hollyhock plant, a transplant from my old plot. i don't know if i'll see any hollyhock flowers in my plot this year (in belmont they've already finished blooming for the most part), but definitely next season.
my 2 most recent ebay purchases arrived today. one was a piece of solar film, $8 for a rectangular sheet of flimsy mylar, but i'll need it to make a makeshift filter if i want to photograph the partial solar eclipse in a few weeks. but with our luck, it'll be overcast that day and nobody here will be able to see a thing! the other item was a tiny usb flashlight, the kind i use for a bicycle headlamp. advertised as having the ability the strobe, this one did not. i knew this might happen, but i cost just over a $1, so not worth the hassle of trying to contact the chinese seller, who won't reply anyway (unless i gave them a bad rating).
last week i signed up for a free 7-day trial account for scoresense, to check my mother's credit score to see if they're in good shape to get the mass solar loan. it's a well designed site and easy to use, but who needs to pay $160 a year so they can check their credit score daily? they also made it hard to cancel, forcing me to call an agent first, who did their best to persuade me to keep the account. the first agent i got wouldn't let me cancel because i didn't know my mother's social security number. once i got it, i called back, and the second agent worked out better. she of course spent several minutes pitching all the benefits of scoresense. i remained patient, listening to her spiel, but eventually grew tired of it and interrupted her. only then did she cancel my account, sending me a confirmation e-mail.
in the afternoon i went to the dollar store to get some snacks, then to star market to grab some cherries ($1.99/lbs.) and carton of mango seltzer on sale ($2.50).
i wrote both boston solar and new england clean energy to let them know we'd gone with a different vendor. i didn't hear back from boston solar, but roy from NECE called me with a proposal: if they're able to match the offer from united solar, would we be interested in switching to NECE? it was an interesting proposition, as NECE has better warranties, but after i told roy how much less united solar was asking, i got the feeling even if they wanted to they couldn't match that deal.
GC came home a bit after 7pm. he needed to go to the grocery store, and wanted to visit market basket, but i told him the brake on my trek utility was busted, so we walked there instead, just 16 minutes, about the same amount of time it'd take us to walk to harvard square. along the way GC told me about his electricity problem back in alabama. typically he pays just $30 a month, but his most recent bill was over $100, when he wasn't even there. he spoke with the utility company who said the meter could be broken and they might adjust it back to his monthly average. tuesday evening is a quiet time at market basket, but for some reason everyone decided to pay at the same time so there was a traffic jam of carts, even at the 12-items-or-less lines. we saw li, who was shopping there with his 2 female roommates. he said hello before leaving (he lives just across the street).
GC cooked up some beef tonight, so the smell was pleasant instead of foul. as for me, i just heated up a pair of frozen french bread pizza for dinner. GC kept himself in the kitchen all night once again, not sure if he's working or found some other form of entertainment to keep himself occupied.