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Here In Oakland

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Under here.

May 31, 2012

Thursday. To bed and to sleep last night somewhat after ten, up this morning fifteen minutes before the alarm, feeling reasonably human; up, out and back from breakfast on a thoroughly nice sunny morning. A good day ahead. We'll assume our guitar lesson coming up at noon goes well, but I'm not worried about it: however it goes it will go well. There may be errors in one's playing and preparation, but there are always errors, this is a learning experience. Right?

Are you prepared?

Not as well as I'd like, but close enough for summer, I'd say, what with the outdoors being so attractive and nice, luring us away from our dedication to practice.

The sun is a harlot?

Of course. A sixteen cylinder Siren in a skimpy dress. Why do you think we take so many of these long walks?

Later. A quick walk over to the lake to sit for maybe five minutes by the pergola white columns with an eye out for the various ducklings and goslings I've recently photographed. The two Mallards had their two ducklings beside the lake in the same area I first found them; the larger goslings, all five of them, seemed in good health; the smaller goslings too, in this case the two of them, were waddling along just fine, thank you.

Back to the apartment to practice a bit before the lesson, taking one last picture as I stood waiting for the crossing light to change. I still haven't tested this new 300mm f 4.0 lens in any real way, but it does seem to shoot a decent picture. Still need to try it in other than bright contrasty light, see if I don't ultimately come up with an ongoing use for it. For birds, yes, but all the birds except for the geese, the gulls and the cormorants seem to have moved on to wherever they go in the spring.

Later still. A drive over to the guitar lesson, ending up parking in the local lot (at $2 an hour), passing by at least two parking spaces that had opened up since I'd driven by them two minutes earlier. I'll change my schedule and remember to keep looking for a space and not give up too quickly as there's usually a turnover of parked cars just after twelve, my lesson starting at twelve-thirty.

I'm still arriving at my appointments too early, usually leaving for this lesson at noon, for example, when it's no more than a five minute drive and I always end up waiting out on his patio for the student ahead of me to finish up and for my lesson to start.

Anyway, I think it went reasonably well. Another riff to practice, a riff that includes something called a “release bend”. Between string bending, hammer ons, hammer offs and now release bending we're making progress. I do have to admit I'm still finding this interesting, although I'm still not able to play very well. But better, I can see better, hear better and can relate this process to the learning of other disciplines I've pursued in the past. It tells you, you don't tell it and, if you can make peace with that, you'll get along just fine. (hup!)

Late afternoon. So, feeling a bit tired, as I have all day, I decided to lie down for a while after the lesson before getting up and heading downtown to buy next month's bus pass and to get something to eat. The “get something to eat” was the deciding factor, I was hungry, so, pick up the pass and then have a piece of chicken with a nice combination salad out at a table in the City Center, walking to catch a bus and get off at the 7-11 look-alike near my apartment for an ice cream cone dessert. A good, balanced, late lunch-dinner.


I know, I know, but pretty much. Given my history? Don't you think?

Evening. Nothing on television, so some time on the guitar to go over today's lesson, something I find necessary to do on the day of the lesson lest I forget the finer points he's covered and find I'm unnecessarily struggling through the rest of the week. Read, for example, the instructions he's written in the book, the points I need to follow and do. Seems a simple, rather obvious thought, but lately I've found I make bad assumptions about what was covered and how the coming week's practice should proceed.



The photo up top was taken on the way to the San Francisco Carnaval Parade with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 70-200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR II lens.