Once again I slept well, and when the lights woke me up at 7 I turned them off intending to grab another hour's shut eye, but I woke up at 8:30. Hence the rush to get ready for work, and skipping the usual morning PC session.
Work was okay, I was able to eliminate one test from the suite because the specs had changed in the 3 years since the test was last run, making it obsolete.
Wanted to go to lunch with the gang, but they chose a tiny Mexican place which (a) does not have enough seating for that large a group and (b) serves Mexican food. Both are show-stoppers for me. I skipped lunch entirely - was not very hungry, and had a banana and a sliced up apple and some donettes in my cooler.
At about 6:40 I took the non-expressway route to Ranch 99 market in Cupertino, which is the first instance of a chain of Asian supermarkets which now has four locations in the south Bay. Being the oldest, it is also the dirtiest, has the narrowest aisles (two of their narrow shopping carts cannot pass), and the fewest parking spaces. It took a long time in the pouring rain to find a spot. Many parking vultures made things worse. It was raining very hard - I later heard 2 inches in an hour.
I was looking for flowering jasmine tea, like I was served in Chengdu China when I was on a business trip there. It made me a regular at the hotel lobby bar/lounge after dinner. There was nothing in the tea aisle - the closest they had was a jar of jasmine flowers which also had a handful of "needle leaf" tea, which I bought. I asked at the register but no one understood what I was asking for. If they are Taiwanese they would not know about this stuff, it is strictly a mainland thing. I should have brought a picture. But I think a picture would only have made the "no, sorry" come sooner.
Some online searching showed that Bed Bath and Beyond in Santa Clara has a flowering tea gift set in stock. It isn't jasmine, but it includes a lovely glass teapot through which you can watch the flower bloom after you drop the tea ball into the hot water.
The tea balls look like this:
They bloom into something like this:
I've seen maybe 30 different flower configurations online, but the Chengdu one was much simpler. Imagine the photo above with only one layer of green (that's the tea), one layer of white (that's the jasmine) and missing the red puffball.
I just made the jasmine flower tea and it was awful. The flowers had begin to rot, I had to toss them all. I'll wash the jar out and use it for something else.
All was not lost, I found some packets to make various flavors of egg flower soup, just add one egg. So I bought eggs too. And some frozen won tons and ha gow. They had a major sale on live lobster, but they don't cook it there (the newer store in Milpitas does) so I had to pass. I usually buy roast duck there, but they were already closed in the "dead cooked birds hanging in the window" section.
And I bought 21 very fat pickle cucumbers, which will make 7 jars' worth.
Put the stuff in the car and walked over to the Starbucks across the parking lot with my Kindle, in case they were open late. It was a little before 8, they close at 8:30. I had a hot mocha and found a big stuffed chair to park in for a half hour of reading.
Then home. The rain showed how not-maintained the road striping is around here. Could not tell what lane I was in half the time. There wasn't much traffic, and what there was was divided pretty evenly between frustrated BMW drivers trying to do 70 in a 50 zone in the rain because they are immortal (it says so in the Beemer owners' manual) and people doing 35 and keeping 47 car lengths between them and the car in front of them because OMG we should have replaced the wipers before it started to rain!
I've got new wipers, new tires and better than 20/20 vision, so I set cruise control for 50 and maybe actually achieved that sped for 12 seconds out of the 15 minute trip.
Home just before 9, the cats yelled at me when I opened the door.
Went online, read my email which included a rare "someone is interested in you" note from match.com. The interested party lives in Capitola (a white knuckle drive over the hill on Hwy 17), is a Morning Person™, wants someone who loves to dance and can do Man Things around the house and enjoys hikes in the mountains. Other than that, she's a perfect match. I started to write a reply, but then remembered I had frozen stuff to put away, had not had dinner, had not fed the cats. So I did all those things. Seafood egg drop soup with pork&shrimp won tons. When I was done with all that I returned to the PC, match.com had logged me out. Screw it, if she is really interested she can send an actual message.
Meant to review Nine but it's almost 2 am and I really should take out my dentures, shoot up some insulin and hit the pillows. I love the nice soft ones I bought at BB&B.
Plans for tomorrow:
- Take the dolly to the apartment office and collect the two 40-lb packages of litterbox replacement cartridges which UPS didn't leave at my door like they had been doing.
- Mountain View Tea Village
- Make some pickles
- Work on putting Janice's Antarctic trip videos onto a DVD
- Review Nine
Due to the rain, the trip to Oakland to photograph thousands of lady bugs wintering in a park there is not happening