nylon, steel string guitarsI bought a guitar! From Sam Ash, and I am feeling elated because when I went in and played it and sang, comparing small and traveler guitars, nylon and steel string, even mandolins, this one just felt like ‘mine’! It was used and came with a case (which I have out sunning to air out that ‘wood finish’ smell). Already my left fingertips feel tender, but I’m determined to toughen them so it’ll be automatic to just pick up and play at any time.

It’s all very symbolic because several years ago, the guitar I had just felt ‘stale’ & was associated with painful memories, so I gave it away. Today I grasped it wasn’t me: it was the guitar! It ‘stopped being mine.’

Do not think I am without fears and shyness: a lot of people mis-read me because of all my courageous triumphs.
It is very hard to sing and play the guitar without pouring your heart out, and that’s been my hesitation (duh).

2 mbiras, kalimbamagic.comMusic bypasses ‘logic boxes’ in our left brains, and that’s why it’s instinctual and intuitive from the earliest peoples who stretched a leather skin over a gourd, made a drum or added a branch with gut strings, and sang: it’s part of our humanity, made in God’s image.

Sometimes an idea comes to us and won’t go away; and metamorphoses (plural), cocoons and pregnancies are all very scientific and Biblical processes of growth, birth and transformation.

output jack acoustic guitarIt has an output jack for an amplifier cable! We plugged it in so I could feel like a rock star. This means I never have to callous-up for steel strings (for increased volume for a group); although the Gibson traveler guitar (which I gave 2 of my Minnesota friends and they loved) has beautiful sound for being so lightweight. The portability would be good for hikes and traveling, so maybe ‘next time,’ when I’m ready.

They didn’t have any pink guitars.

Melanie P Renfrew Dec. 2011Dogged by identity confusion and fraud, I rarely release private info, but still am mixed up by others seeing me.

In Africa, I was thought to be someone else: “All Mzungus look alike.” I became used to people thinking I was someone else, just as I am used to Americans getting latitude and longitude opposite, and people thinking offshore flow comes from the ocean: TV weathercasters have made it so by ‘millions’ of West winds during their predictions since the 1960s.
It’s a parallel universe, an impenetrable dimension, like a portal when they enter the studio and world of screens apart from the real sky,
upper air vs. ground-level confusion, night vs. day, East vs. West.

In “Offshore Winds, The Musical,” the indoor-male-geek chorus of meteorologists, with earnest good intentions and flawed feelings of superiority, sing a bass Gregorian-chant-‘OFFSHORE’-drone counterpoint to 4-part* ‘onshore’ harmonies & high lyrical soprano. I hear and see it.

Last year an LAX cab driver sped to what he thought was my home, bull-headed, because I’m a ‘teacher,’ and he’d given a ride to a ‘teacher’ near my neighborhood before: “his” way was “much faster, much faster” (3.8 miles farther than “our way”). He was Turkish and I didn’t want to argue, as it was late.
(I do have a Turkish man friend, great, and he’s strong!)

About every 2-3 months, I go to CA Pizza Kitchen, and the manager has chatted with me twice before. Yesterday on the way out, I went over to say thank you as my special combination tastes so good; and he answered,
“Great! I’ll see you tomorrow.”

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Sicilian with broccoli, double eggplant, no salami, CA Pizza Kitchen
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*In other words, everyone else knows the winds are from the West.

Safari njema 1, MP Renfrew June 2014
Safari njema 2, MP Renfrew June 2014
Safari njema 3, MP Renfrew  2014
Safari njema 4, MP Renfrew  2014
Safari njema 5, MP Renfrew  2014
Safari njema 7, MP Renfrew  2014
Safari njema 6, MP Renfrew  2014078
Safari njema 8, MP Renfrew  2014

orange bougainvillea, pink hibiscus, 10-19-13 in my yard, MP RenfrewJuly 10, 2012 backyardI have a big yard for an American metro area.

Ocean air comes to my windows daily, usually about 11 a.m. In the summer, I don’t let it in until about 5 p.m. because trapped night air is cooler.

Last winter I did not turn on my heaters once, but I do wear cozy jackets as I go from room to room, have a down comforter and Icelandic wool blankets sent by my brother when he worked there.

Traffic is from about 6:30-10:30, 11-1, and 2-8. Sometimes there is a window of openness at 4 p.m. before the 5:00 rush starts, and the people who start at 4 are already at work.

You can hear bass woofers at intersections almost anywhere, and they shake the house driving by (not too common except during aforementioned rush hours).

Actually, my neighborhood during weekdays is quiet and peaceful, and I usually work at home.

I am 20 mins. from work and 20 mins. from church, 20 mins. from LAX and 5 mins. from stores and restaurants. I can buy tasty ethnic food cheaper than making it, from people who pray that people like me will come by and buy it.

I can grow strawberries all year (sweet and wild-tasting, like this morning), and other fruit and veg. from about Feb.-November. Most people have lemon trees.
harvesting-dr-renfrews-garden-used-to-be-brown-lawn

DSC09804People’s lawns are water hogs; the clay soil by itself is not arable.
succulent replacement plan, July 2014

Mountain shrubs are brown and gray a lot of time, but there are 100s of trails and I like the riparian pathways with trees.

People in my neighborhood are mixed ethnically, and I like going to stores to see African and Mexican curly hair.

Costco is mostly white, and other stores are cheaper.

Los_Angeles_Basin_JPLLandsatI go to Manhattan Beach businesses 2-3x/week as ocean air is like a magnet, & it’s nearly on the way if I’m going North on the 405 (405 = see ‘Near Death Experiences’).

I try to stay out of bright sun because skin cancers are epidemic, and people who tan look old fast.

L.A. is not as polite as Texas, and a lot of people are rebellious and have no regard for authority.

Not everyone thinks the Hollywood/media mindset or values are to be emulated. I see movie stars sometimes without looking for them, they look tired, and I feel empathetic.:-)

Everyone needs a Savior (everywhere).

Melanie P. Renfrew April 2013NBC Los Angeles never apologized to me for lying about me in the court records, how I had to go to court 9 times declaring “Not Guilty” until the 8th time, when I agreed to take a “Plea bargain” which was simply admitting that I wrote the station! (At least, that’s how it was explained to me by a sweet prosecuting attorney.)
Then it was quoted that I was “convicted,” “stalking,” had “brain surgery,” etc., and most people thought it was ridiculous!

I did not want to throw away $5000 on a lawyer for writing to a media station that “Winds are from the West on sunny days.” I had no idea that was “wrong” in their eyes, nor that “liking” them was a “crime.”
Now local stations beg viewers for photos and videos, like the UCLA flood.

Since that time, my resources have (at least) quadrupled, I have no debt (mortgage paid off), I’ve been around the world twice on award seats, had other great trips with my son, family and friends, led >200 more field trips and nature walks (>4-500 total), overcame cancer, lost 25 lbs. but am not ‘thin,’ and enjoyed more intimacy and rewards from God that I ever would have had if not ‘crucified.’ If you take someone’s reputation and try to destroy it, trying to make them a scapegoat to cover generation(s) of ‘offshore’ error, that’s how it feels; but my reputation has always belonged to God anyway.

Thanks to you blog readers for support!
Love, Melanie

“OFFSHORE FLOW”:
L.A.'s High pressure winds are onshore at the shore, not "offshore"
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Note: I work with dyslexic students, who answer and think the opposite of what’s true because of synaptic switching.

Pondering monotonous conundrums, June 2014
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1. What is the temperature of water in the cloud related to air around it?
2. Which way(s) is the wind blowing?
3. Extra Credit: For each photo, which direction am I facing and what time of day is it?
(These photos are from L.A. and Oceanside areas this month: click to enlarge.)

July 2014 cloud 1, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 2, MP Renfrew
July 2014 cloud 3, MP Renfrew
Catalina from White Point, July 2014, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 4, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 6, MP Renfrew
Teasing with a filter:
July 2014 cloud 6, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 7, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 8, MP Renfrew
July 2014 cloud 9, MP Renfrew
July 2014 clouds 10, MP Renfrew

Yet another 'OFFSHORE FLOW' day, MP Renfrew 7-21-14
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Dinah'sToday Dinah’s restaurant in Culver City is charging its 1959 prices; so you could take your family there, wait outside in line, eat everything, and pay about $6.

They have good breakfasts. (This was Sunday.)
Heidi, Sandra, Yvonne, 7-27-14 Dinah's
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