Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Rain much?

The rain that caused the flooding in Phoenix and Las Vegas has moved north... into our path.  We talked with Steph today - mud is being moved off some of the roads with heavy equipment.  There are signs on our route telling that I-15 is closed from Mesquite to Las Vegas.  Mother Nature is making it difficult for us to get to Phoenix.

Because of this situation, we made today a "short day": only 400 miles or so.  We're hoping to get more information about the road situation before we have to commit to a route.

"Well, since we aren't going to go for distance today, how about we make a stop?" I asked.

"What do you have in mind?" she queried.

"There is a guitar shop somewhere around Salt Lake City that specializes in carbon fiber guitars - I read about it all the time on the guitar forum."

"Sure.  Why not?"

By the time we got to Salt Lake City, the sky opened up and the rain poured.  Driving near downtown, I had the wipers on the fastest speed... and they were not keeping up.  We got off the Interstate at Murray... you could hardly see the lines on the road.  Joan put the address into the GPS, taking us a couple miles off I-15.

The guitar shop (MacNichol Guitars and Mandolins) is located in an outdoor shopping center (not a mall situation).  As we pulled into the parking lot, the rain let up a bit.  By the time I got the truck and trailer parked, it was only moderately pouring.  Joan decided to wait in the truck, I made a dash for the overhang outside the shops.

Inside the guitar shop, I met Michael.  He was just finishing a sale over the phone.  We visited for bit - when he asked what I wanted to play, I let him know that I just wanted to see the shop, since I have heard so much about it on the guitar forums.  We talked about carbon fiber guitars and I told him I have a RainSong Shorty.  After the "I really like it" discussion, he asked if I have tried a bone saddle on it... then told me that most owners prefer that... and said he had time to put one on right now, if I was interested.

"Absolutely!"  I went to the truck, grabbed the Shorty, and told Joan I would be a while... she said, "Take your time."

I watched while Michael took the strings out of the pin holes and removed the saddle that came with the guitar.  He sanded the new bone saddle to match the original.  When he asked if there was anything about the action I would change, I said, "Well, if the action was a bit lower - more like my Taylors - that would be nice."

"Let me take care of that."  He sanded down the saddle a bit more, dressed out the string slots on the nuts, and tightened the nuts on the tuning keys.  Then, handed it to me to give it a try...

I didn't notice a big difference in the sound - perhaps a bit warmer... but the action was great!  As good as my Taylors (and that is a big deal).  I was delighted with the service and the price.

Oh, and I played another RainSong Parlor... 'cause it was there.  Another very sweet guitar; smaller than my Shorty, but a sound much bigger than you'd think by looking at it.

Joan came to check on me, I introduced her to Michael, I thanked him again, and we drove south to the hotel Joan had booked for us... and the rain was mostly done.

At the hotel, I played the Shorty for a while... yes, a real difference.  It was great before - even better now!

The hotel has a nice steakhouse on the premises... my belly is full, my fingers are happy.


Looks like rain...

No, that was the blowing dirt in Idaho, before we got to Utah.  The signs warned us about "blowing dirt and dust storms"... they were right.

At the northern portion of the Wasatch Mountains, before we got into the rain...

The blue sky and white puffy clouds disappeared quickly after I shot that, replaced by the pounding rain and occasional lightning.

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