Sitting in a tin can

9b4ed69ad9fc22b8ca5b201be981c11f_largeIt was one of those typically sl conversations… At some point the world will be destroyed by a massive meteorite, so the logical conclusion was that we’d build ourselves a space rocket and get the hell outta here. How difficult could it be – after all, it’s not, erm… rocket science? Ever the environmentalists, we thought we could probably knock something together out of recycled trash and away we’d go. Believe it or not, a member of our little group of extra-terrestrial wannabes has a partner who actually is a rocket scientist in rl, so we reckoned it’d be a doddle!

national space society_001Our science officer, (well, DJ and sl builder, actually), informed us there was an inhabitable system some 25000 years distant, so it was just a case of aiming the ship, sorting out the recycling arrangements and deciding who was going to make the sandwiches. The more practical among us remembered to pack the vacuum cleaner – there’s a heck of a lot of vacuum to be cleaned in space – and i raised the serious question of toenail clippings: just how exactly were we to deal with the accumulated mass from a 25000 year journey?

These are precisely the sort of people you really do want to be stuck with on a long journey – creative, witty, intelligent, practical, and probably barking mad! Pretty much the same sort of people who put together the magnificent spectacle that is SL10B.

i appear to be back to full functionality after my annoying technical blip, so it’s been full steam ahead to explore Magnificent, Exhilarate and Mesmerize… and what a joy it’s been.

There’s a fair bit of surrealism, spirituality and downright mind-bogglination going on in these sims – i was serenaded by Hare Krishnas, introduced to pyramid power and reminded that sl isn’t just about fun and games… in fact, there are numerous worthy causes represented throughout the whole of the celebration, including Relay for Life, and the very moving exhibit by Rowan Attis, The House Where HIV LivesThe world of education is also surprisingly prominent, considering the mass withdrawal of educational establishments from sl in recent years – i always find it fascinating how sl and rl can interact to great effect.

tir na nog4_001There are plenty of great effects to be seen, pretty much wherever you look: Tir Na Nog is a splendid example of an immersive and spellbinding retreat from the madness around you – i have no idea what it’s about, (i’ll get around to reading the notecard eventually!), but i like it!

orm7_001

‘l’eau’

orm11_001

‘birth’

Another surreal and somehow, incredibly moving, exhibit – which has definitely found its way into my top 10 for this year’s celebration is Orm, a peculiar-looking tower that hides two amazing experiences – water and birth – it captivated me and spoke to me, even though i couldn’t tell you what it was saying. In a way Orm sums up for me the mystery of sl – the intangible ‘something’ that it’s pointless to try and explain to those who are outside the bubble. To participate and become part of the whole is to understand – you can’t just be an observer. All very deep, i know, but that’s the great thing about this place: you never know quite what to expect – one moment, it’s giant meeroos, the next it’s an almost out of body experience. Doncha just love this wacky place called sl?

3stages2_001Time was moving on and i’d finally broken the back of most of the site – so it was time to head for the centre and the four sims dominated by the Cake Stage – it’s pretty awesome. Dotted around the corners, you’ll find my own build in Pizzaz, along with the lovely Ce n’est pas une peinturethe clever Little Blue Fermi Sandbox in Astound, Enchant’s spooky !Pandemonium and you can sit, wreathed in misty falling water at Quiet Thunder, looking out towards both the Cake and Lake stages.

The Cake Stage itself is monumental – it towers over the sims and entices you in with promises of icing, flowers and, hidden right at the top – the cake itself. Nommy! The dance floor is massive and the whole thing really is a fitting tribute to ten years of Second Life.

cake stage31_001

Now my marathon trek is more or less complete, i’ll be taking the rest of today off and logging into rl for a spell. Tomorrow, i’ll be back for the grand finale and some mopping-up from my disastrous route-planning of day one! There’s also a volcano to see and i want to check out the auditorium, plus i’m looking forward to seeing this year’s Time Capsule.

Until then, it’s your turn to do some exploring of your own!

s. x

Though I’m past one hundred thousand miles, I’m feeling very still 
And I think my spaceship knows which way to go
Chris Hadfield – Space Oddity

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