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Guitar Shopping.....

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

La, la, la la, la.......

Happy happy joy joy!

I usually do not get this giddy, but...

I am approaching my 2nd anniversary of maintenance. How am I doing? A few pounds up, but still well within normal BMI and clothes fit fine. Working on losing the few pounds, but not hysterical about it.

So, for me this is big reward time! And I am shopping for a nylon crossover. All opinions about guitars in the blog are mine, no endorsements or money or guitars have changed hands!

Tech stuff: a nylon crossover is a nylon string guitar, It can have the same dimensions as a regular classic, or they can be different (narrower neck, longer fretboard). It does have a cutaway, onboard electronics, and pegs you can use to attach a strap. These guitars have been designed for steel players who want to experiment with nylon, but also suit nylon players who want the capacity of amplification (and the ability to stand up and play). For me, I am looking for a accompaniment guitar.

I have played 5 models, three Taylors and 2 Yamahas. Apologies to Chris (PUDDLECRAZY) but the Taylors do not cut it for me. Even the very expensive one I tried. The sound was wrong for me. Wise salesperson (about 18 years old with a mohawk haircut) said Taylor is best at steel string guitars.

Now, the Yamahas. The lest expensive was tantamount to a piece of you know what. But a model a few steps up, now..... it has the same dimensions as a regular classic, which means that wide 2 inch fretboard. but, you know, my left hand fingers have fretboard memory and are used to a fretboard that size. When I tried a guitar with a narrower neck, I missed the mark a lot. Just a bit difficult to do that 6th string 1st string stretch with my ring finger and pinky, but hey, after I am warmed up, I can do it--usually.

It has the cutaway, and the electronics, and the strap pegs. And, because it has standard classic depth (more tech stuff) it can produce that deep Yamaha bass. Its' trebles are also quite sweet!

And, for a relatively inexpensive guitar (less that $1,500) it is solid wood, no laminate.

Fit and finish were excellent, what you expect from Yamaha, and it had a very unusual sound hole inlay treatment, kind of modern art. And it comes with a case, so no extra expense there.

I have one more store to go to which will also have these brands. There is a third brand, but running my thumb across the open strings was enough for me to say no way!

Will probably hit the second store on Friday.



  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CATHOLICCORGI 9/24/2012 7:57PM

    May I ask what model the Yamaha is? I like the wide fretboard on a regular classic... The guitar sounds beautiful! I keep thinking I am going to get another guitar. Perhaps that will be my goal weigh reward?

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DDOORN 9/19/2012 8:38AM

    Bigtime congrats to your 2 years maintaining! Couldn't think of a better gift to yourself! I've tried out some of these nylon crossovers also and find them a bit clunky and awkward to get used to. Being a Yamaha owner I'm not surprised to hear that you found the Yamaha to be the most promising... :-)


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PUDLECRAZY 9/11/2012 7:47PM

    LOL! No apologies needed! I actually bought my Taylor NS because of the issue you were talking about with the wide neck of a classical. My fingers just did not fit around. Now I play my Cordoba flamenco almost exclusively. With time and practice, my fingers were eventually able to reach stretches I did not think were possible, although some are still difficult. A friend of mine bought a very sweet Yamaha classical guitar last year and it is a joy to play.

I am so excited that you are in the shopping stage of finally getting your new guitar. I can't wait to see it! I don't know how often I'll be on SP.... can you dash me a message when you get it?

Yay for you!

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MUSICNERD1993 9/8/2012 12:47PM

    I love shopping for instruments! I'm so excited for you to get your guitar!

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R-U-JELLEN 9/6/2012 8:40PM

    emoticon on your maintenance anniversary!
emoticon that you are healing so nicely!
Have an emoticon time guitar shopping.

I have two guitars. I'm not up on all the technicalities of the instruments but I enjoy mine. I have a Yamaha 6- string and an Alvarez 12 string. I just love my Alvarez. They quit making them years ago but I have never played a 12 string as easy to play as this one. It is great for accompanying kid's choirs and stuff. And for sing-alongs.

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HAPPYSOUL91 9/5/2012 9:42PM

    I know very little about guitars but I do know about maintenance and a big woo hoo to you. emoticon


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MEXGAL1 9/5/2012 3:50PM

    so very cool! what a terrific gift to yourself. You so deserve it!
Great job!

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JLLOVETT 9/5/2012 12:57PM

    emoticon emoticon
Way to go on a new you!!!
I don't know anything about guitars though.

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Update on stuff!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Hello everyone!

I was at the fracture clinic yesterday, last time for this go around.

I am "putting down a lot of new bone" according to the surgeon. This is good, and especially good considering my age and worries about arthritis in older ladies.

There is still a lot of soft tissue damage, and I will have discomfort for a while yet. For me, as long as I know the bone part is okay, I just motor through the rest. So, I am back in regular work shoes instead of lace ups. Now, don't think flip flops, I wear a sturdier shoe than that!

And, in case I forgot to mention, the bunion and hammertoe are gone, and the toenail is growing back. I have a normal foot!

Other stuff; the very difficult project I was working on is almost done. I had to be creative on demand, it caused a lot of anxiety for sure.

I am pretty quickly building up to my fitness levels. Full duration on the treadmill, and up to 2.5 mph. I was at 3.6 before the surgery. Also need to add the incline intervals. Should be up to speed in a month or so.

And, this is the best. Starting tomorrow, I wi.ll be retiring in exactly one year. September 1 is the last September 1 I will be employed, at least in this job. Life of meaningful activity as a retired person, here I come. Whoo-hoo!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PUDLECRAZY 9/2/2012 9:10PM

    I am so glad you are making such a great recovery! It is very encouraging when we hear 'putting down a lot of bone' after tha age of 60. I think it is at least partly because you went into it fit. Congratulations!!!
And congrats on seeing the retirement light at the end of the tunnel. I am still chugging though; glad I like my job.

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HAPPYSOUL91 9/2/2012 12:58PM

    You really are doing very well on all levels.....good job

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MUSICNERD1993 8/31/2012 10:40PM

    Great news about the progress you are making! You are doing wonderfully!

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MEXGAL1 8/31/2012 6:08PM

    so glad to hear that you are healing well and all is good there.
I love retirement! I hope you will as well.
Woo hoo!

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JITZUROE 8/31/2012 4:38PM

    Hello! What great news about how well you are healing!
I'm still stuck in the 'no shoes' zone, so I know I can relate with your frustration in waiting. But now you are in shoes!!! HOORAH!
And I think it's so fantastic that you have begun that 1 year count down - and your mobility will only get better as you reach that goal.

Happy Friday!

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JENAE954 8/31/2012 4:18PM

  Sounds like you are determined to attain goals.
I know how difficult it is to recoup after an injury or break.
Keep up the great progress!

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BRONZE50 8/31/2012 4:15PM

  Best wishes for continued recovery from your injuries.

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My Summer Vacation August 28, 2012--with pictures! (I hope!)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

As my blog title states, my summer vacation this year was one day.....and DH and I put a lot into the day!

We started at the Royal Ontario Museum:

I called this beast stupidosaurus because of very large body and small head....if he didn't have ganglia along his spine to work his legs, he would never move!

We saw lots of classical staruary...


And mummies....

We then went to see the rest of the dinasaurs.

Wouldn't want to meet this guy in a dark alley!

Or this one!

We then had coffee in the cafe--this is DH...

We then travelled to High Park in West Toronto to see an open air production of A Midsummer's Night Dream. Sadly, we could not take photos during the performance...

The audience...

The setting...very rural...

It was a fabulous day, and I will remember for a long time my one day summer vacation!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PUDLECRAZY 9/2/2012 9:11PM

    Looks like a fun day of vacation! Nice to see DH. emoticon

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JANEDOE12345 8/30/2012 6:40AM

    All the summer packed into one day!

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HAPPYSOUL91 8/29/2012 6:47PM

    Your attitude is the best. One day was packed and you both were happy

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MEXGAL1 8/29/2012 6:28PM

    Wow, you sure packed a lot in one day...made me tired. so glad you had a nice time.

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MUSICNERD1993 8/29/2012 6:26PM

    Sounds like a great day! Lots of great pictures!

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Do you like to listen to audiobooks?

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Here is an almost bottomless source of free (public domain) books i have just come upon.

I have been listening to them for years, first on cassette tapes and then cd's from the library; then downloaded from Lit2go from iTunes U; and now librevox.

Librevox is a source of free audiobooks read by amateurs, I do find the quality kind of varied, but it is free. These are not going to be best sellers; they are public domain, out of copyright, and there are old familiar classics plus a lot of obscure and interesting stuff. I just finished one that consisted of the letters of a pioneer woman in Wyoming in the early 1900's.

So, you need an iPhone or iTouch, probably there is an app for android too. Download the app Audiobooks, there is a free version and an upgraded version that costs 99 cents. You will have a choice of free books or ones that cost, make your selection, download or stream, and there you go.

If you want to volunteer and read for librevox, you can go to the website.

Knowing me, I am probably the last person to find this resource, but hey, I wanted to share it. I find these audiobooks a great way to pass the time and learn something while driving, or housecleaning, or working out.



  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 9/19/2012 8:39AM

    Love audiobooks for traveling. Can't find time for them otherwise...just give me my tunes! :-)


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OOLALA53 8/27/2012 9:24PM

    Thanks for this resource! I want to start listening more. I hope the artists who wrote the books get some kind of compensation, if appropriate, too, though.

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GUITARWOMAN 8/27/2012 7:29PM

    You are correct!

The site is spelled librivox.

My apologies.

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JANEDOE12345 8/27/2012 5:21PM

    Another one is>
Having a tough time getting into librevox -- is it

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MEXGAL1 8/27/2012 2:09PM

    Thanks for sharing ;)!

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HAPPYSOUL91 8/27/2012 12:22PM

    Thx for the tip, if I listen to anything but the radio it is learning CD's that sure aren't free.

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MUSICNERD1993 8/27/2012 11:33AM

    That sounds awesome! ...but not as awesome as imslp is for sheet music. Best website ever.

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MSGO72 8/26/2012 9:56PM

  Thanks for sharing

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DRAGONCHILDE 8/26/2012 8:59PM

    I love librevox. I have several books from them. :) Listening to audiobooks is the only way I can tolerate the treadmill more than 5 minutes at a time!

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Ten minutes left for my lunch hour....

Thursday, August 16, 2012

So I'll write a blog.

I have come to pleasantly anticipate reading the regular blogs of some of my Sparkfriends, so I thought it is important that I reciprocate!

Monday at the supermarket.

I am in the checkout line.
It is extra long for some reason.
My first day back at work, I am tired and my foot hurts.

A pleasant looking older lady got in line behind me. She was carrying her groceries in a reusable shopping bag. At least I had paid the deposit and had a shopping cart to lean on.

She answered her phone, and had a clear, bell-like voice. I was not eavesdropping, but I heard "leukemia," and then I heard "heart," and then "guarded condition."

And I had one of those moments when I realized my troubles were minuscule, microscopic, sub-atomic in size.

S I tapped her on the arm and offered that she could go in front of me. At first she said no, then she said yes, and she said to me she would pay this favor forward.

That's the story. No big deal for me, and maybe her day was made a bit easier. I hope so.

emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROCKMAN6797 8/19/2012 7:51PM

    I love paying it forward!

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PUDLECRAZY 8/17/2012 6:43AM

    It is very helpful to keep our difficulties in perspective. A couple of days ago a friend asked me how my foot was doing. It IS doing better, but I still have pain. It is probably 80% better. But I have another friend who is fighting for her life, she has ovarian cancer and I am afraid the cancer has the edge in this fight even though Jeanie is a tough opponent. In the grand scheme of things, the pain and inconvenience of my foot injury is miniscule.

That said, it must be hard going back to work and resuming tasks like groceries shopping after your foot surgery. You are amazing.

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DESIDERATA~GIRL 8/16/2012 4:55PM

    It's very true, many others have majoy problems but we often don't realise it. That was very kind of you to let her go before you - it meant little extra effort on your part but probably made a big difference to her day.


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RAE_LEIGH22 8/16/2012 4:24PM

    I'm sure that made her day!

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MUSICNERD1993 8/16/2012 1:10PM

    What a great blog. You are so kind emoticon

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JILLITA55 8/16/2012 1:07PM

    Tears came to my eyes reading this blog. You are a very kind person. Most people would never do that. God Bless You! emoticon emoticon

You get an "A" from me!

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SOON2BSMALL1313 8/16/2012 1:02PM

    People like you give me hope for our future. For every nice thing done I hope some one pays it forward and maybe the violence will get just a little bit less...

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