I might never want to live there, because of lag, add-farm, ban-lines and neighbor issues. But there is something about Mainland in SL that makes it worth spending time on. It's the utter chaos that one runs accross every step of the way. The ever unfinished nature of it.
Time (and many times greed) has segmented the regions on the main continents into an infinite number of tiny lots. And thousands of those tiny lots have inhabitants trying to make the best of the little piece of land and the small numbers of prims they own. Houses neighbor gardens, neighbor clubs and shops in the utmost disorderly fashion. Nobody even tries to live according to a set theme. A castle is set between a 20th-century home, a cozy cave and a startrek-style future-home. And about everything inbetween. There is everything from the sl-firsthomes to costly prefabs, first tries at building ones own home to the precious success of coming build-masters.
There's clutter and garbage hanging in midair. Empty platforms and half-built skyboxes. Waterfalls at 100 meters coming out of nowhere whichs waters never touch ground. Cars, animals and other accessories floating high above ground seemingly trown up there by an invisible tornado. Much like a childs room just before mom takes out that big broom.
All it takes to explore this mess is time and a strong set of nerves, that can handle flying around all those ugly banlines and nasty security orbs. And every now and then one stumbles upon a little treasure, well hidden within all this mess. An outburst of creativity which might go unnoticed, if not found by chance.
As a fan of Douglas Adams' 'Hitchhiker to the Galaxy' the visit to Extropia was exhilarating fun! The reason most people land here (mostly guys I suspect) is because they are looking for some kind of new aircraft. And for this, I suppose, Extropia must be one of the best places to look. Second Skies offers some of the greatest airplanes and airships I have seen in SL and a whole lot of other freaky flight objects for the kerosene-type of guy. But there is much more to see on this futuristic 3-sim-project. There is the architecture for one thing. All the huge buildings have a distintive lightness to them - no wonder some of them float in mid-air like the airships just above. But the reason why this sim should have a spot high up in the sl-spotlights is the space elevator. Look for the three steel ropes that head right up into the clouds - call the elevator - and take a trip into the stratosphere - or directly into space. That's where Douglas Adams comes in. At the end of the ropes there's a bar from which you have a fantastic look into space. Having a drink there feels every bit as being in the 'Restaurant at the End of the Universe'. Well, without all the sleazy aliens, mostly.
See more pictures at my flickr-Page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/moeuhane_sandalwood
I had thought it through well. And still: now that I went through with it, a little teardrop formed in my eye. I left my home in Grand Isle today. Packed up house and bar and bonfire and went accross my land with the big broom. It is a weird feeling, leaving behind the place I first called 'home' in Second Life. But in the past weeks I realized that I had spent much more time in my downtown appartment, my gallery and on the road exploring. Therefore I decided to sell my little piece of Paradise for someone who appreciates it more. Moe's Den is not there anymore, but it will sure stay in my heart as the loving refuge it has once been for me. If you decide to be it's next resident, treat it well.
There is this thing about dancing in Second Life. My mind first couldn't really make anything out of it. It is one thing, running around in the Metaverse, flying, teleporting, even driving that fantastic bike. But having your Avatar moved around by some script? Sometimes even not your own script? At first that felt, as if someone had strings attached to my rl-limbs. Not an uplifting feeling.
Weird thing is, though, that I grew more and more fond of dancing in SL - for one thing probably, because it is one of the best ways to meet other people. What most residents seem to do, if they are not going about their business or their explorations (or...hm...the other thing...), is dancing at some club - so that's where they are at and where they are most relaxed to talk to.
And then came that night at Spiral Parx' (one of my best friends) club a few months ago. I saw those crazy people having lots of fun - line-dancing, for god's sake! But it was no river-dance-style bore. They had a real shakin' goin' on!
Being this free spirited i-have-my-own-animations-not-touching-that-dance-ball kind of dancer, I was a bit reluctant to accept Hevy Malibu's invitation to join them at first. But sure enough, curious me did anyway. Seconds later, having recieved a hat and a cane matching the color of my clothing, i sat on my own little white triangle in the lineup, handing my fate to Hevy and the other 'trainers'. And before the night was over, I was one of them - a member of Funky Feats - the craziest, funnest and most lovable dance-group/family in SL.
The Funky Feats are a loose group of people that meet for dancing - and having tons of fun doing it. The 'trainers' are constantly adding new dances to the routine, diverse and always matching the music. They talk to club-owners who seem to be really happy with the Funkys showing up, because they almost always draw a crowd of people with them. Which means the group is invited to a lot of beautiful venues in the grid. It's so much of a win-win-thing, because the Funkys can do what they love best, helping club-owners to get the word about their venues out there.
The uplifting spirit of the Funkys is always very welcome. Especially in moments like last night when the group honored an SL-resident that passed away, helping her friends cope by making them dance their sorrow away. The picture is from our white christmas 'Tribute to Brandi Basset Dance' at Paradise Country and Classic Rock Music Club.
If you have a special event at your venue, look up the Funky Feats in group-search and IM one of the 'trainers'. I am looking forward at spending a fun evening of fun dancing and socializing in your club!
The Link to Paradise Country and Classic Rock Music Club:
The name "Hydrogen City" caught my eye right away, when I checked some guy's picks. It had the sound of dark, neko, sleazy and yet metallically futuristic to it. It just sounded like a perfect picture-opportunity. The TP landed me in empty waterland. So much for hydrogen, I thought. Then I saw it glowing city-floor high above me in the air. Too bad I was in the middle of a No Fly Zone! Doesn't really stop a nosey SL-explorer, does it? Using some serious camera-muscle I stood in this huge city that was everything I expected and more (see flickr-stream). It's a mixture of dark urban neko, spaceship and downtown china. I'm not sure, though, they really like visitors their (completely empty) city. I had just completed my photo-session when falling through a hole in the ground, finding myself back in the waterland all over again. Still, checking the city out is worth the hassle. So try it yourself.
By the way...just a few feet away from the landing zone is a cylindric picture-screen showing a winter forrest. Try getting in there. You will find this amazing little winter wonderland. Although they must have some really defiant elfs living there. There's a bunch of stores - so you might think they would welcome some customers. Well, I found myself ejected from that little island before I could say hello. But hey, maybe they like your face better than mine...
This Link brings you into the city...evading the water (verified!): http://slurl.com/secondlife/Prosperine/106/154/227