Here I am, enjoying a quiet moment on one of my favorite places in any reality, the oh so brilliant Cherry Manga’s Terra Mater region on Franco Grid. Thankfully, the shimmering waters on every side and the gentle surrealism are lulling me into a state of dreamy peace and contentment.
It hasn’t even been a month since my last post, although it seems like F-O-R-E-V-E-R. If you think time goes too quickly, get your kid diagnosed with a big fat disease during a routine examination. The cardiac frieght train that was careening off with my fifteen year old son has slowed somewhat; the specialist said the last batch of test results were not quite as “dramatic” as the first ones, and so we have yet more tests coming up, and time to get our heads around the whole crapstorm.
Amazingly, not all of it has just sucked. The frieght train introduced me to the man my son is becoming; and he is one of the most level headed people I have ever met. His sense of humor is endless, as is his capacity for calm, rational thought under crushing pressure. Meeting him has been one of the great pleasures of my life.
I work in a school, and these past two weeks have been the autumn break. I had big plans for a museum inventory and a meaty post about a couple of really interesting projects; but I noticed most days I was seriously screwing up EVERYTHING except le man child’s medical stuff . So I confined my virtual activities to simple things, not one of which worked out even vaguely the way I thought it would, happily leading me to some very cool discoveries that I would like to share with you.
Hello my dearest dears! How marvelous! Here we all are ready for another whirlwind adventure on OpenSim, the software platform that hosts hundreds of independant worlds, many of which choose to be connected by the hypergrid, an amped up teleportation system that allows you to endlessly explore these brave new worlds, making friends from all over the planet, making exciting discoveries and amassing so much high quality free content that it will make you dizzy; in the Haruki Murakami and the ghost of Jack Kerouac locked in an epic battle spanning time and space over your literary affections kind of way. Nothing too CAT Scanny.
If you do not know how to get on OpenSim(and you are not alone) please read my ” How To Get On OpenSim In Six Ridiculously Easy Steps” page at the top of this blog. If you do not understand any of the terminology, please see my Newbie Glossary, also at the top! It’s easy! Come on! Come spread your wings in the free metaverse!
For today’s adventure we will be cruising on the hypergrid, as well as hearing an important announcement from my home grid Craft! Let’s start with my jaunt to cultural powerhouse Franco Grid, the free metaverses first French speaking world!
A Tale of Two Villages
As my mental state deteriorated to the point where I was losing my glasses in the refrigerator twice a day, I decided to take a little holiday off grid and do some laid back sight seeing. I began with a trip to unforgettable Terra Mater, and found , to my delight, that it was better than ever! Cherry had been busy adding this…
Gorgeous little details.
Towering and wild…
… brooding and mysterious…
…just what the doctor ordered for a burnt out Mom.
Batteries recharging, I decided to mosey on over to region Le Village, the Franco Grid welcome sim, to see if anything else was new…
It most certainly was! The pretty French village now sported notecard vendors will all kinds of cool landmarks for visitors, and behind this door was a snazzy pictoral teleport hub to some of Franco Grid’s impressive cultural builds. I had publically criticized this grid in the past for a lack of coherent presentation; and now I was up to my neck a positive treasure trove! Having never been to most of the listed builds, I just clicked …Yonder.
I was having serious fun now. I thought, I may have brain rot, but I can handle cranking out a little post, telling people about these wonderful improvements! So a few days later, I teleported back to Franco Grid’s picturesque slice of rural France…
[15:13] Cherry.Manga @hg.francogrid.org: Well, The Village is totally remadefrom scratch. It was much too heavy, and it wasn’t my cup of tea, the realistic little French village.. after all we can do what we wish here, so why fitting to reality? I feel more comfortable in surreal space like this, well it’s more “me”..I hope people will like it, I’m not sure everybody is open to this kind of world I wish people will find a place to dream here, to let imagination grow.
As of this writing, Le Village, which should be renamed something ever so slightly less American than “Cherry Totally Kicks Ass”, is still under construction, but is open to the public. The teleport panels have yet to be installed, but there are art freebies in the next room, and souvenir t shirts upstairs. Amuse-toi bien !
My next unexpected adventure came from my beloved home grid, Craft -the Friendly World. I had posted a few weeks ago about the exciting new freebie region my dear friend, award winning artist Tosha Tyran was building for the grid.
This is Craft’s new, all animal freebie region, Noah -the Friendly Ark! Hmm, that rainbow is new. Anyway, the project is different from your standard freebie region, in that you can make donations. In other words, if you have an animal that is not on the ark, you can drop off a copy! I knew Tosh had been tweaking the donation system and was being mysterious about some other stuff. When she sent me an IM saying said she wanted to talk to me about my next post, my heart sank. I had just spent 10 minutes looking for keys that were in my hand the whole time. Okay, in a lot of ways that was an improvement on the fridge, but I was still pretty sure I wasn’t up to writing!! Tosha is one of my best friend; I hated letting her down! Imagine my delight when she asked me, out of the blue, to print something SHE had written about the project!!! My first guest writer!!
Tosha’s Unexpected Missive
“Let me tell you about the birds and the bees…
and all other animals, this planet might hold:
domestic and wild, tame and savage, cuddly and dangerous, small and huge, male and female, dwellers of land and sea, air and ground,
2-, 4-, 6- and 8-legged ones, furry and fishy, solitary, swarms, couples, families, flocks, hordes and packs…
Myriads of sea life too, from the tiniest swarm fish to the gigantic huffing and puffing whale…
and all those underwater dwellers like clams and sea horses, octopi and shrimp, corals and sharks and much, much more.
And the flowers and the trees:
Flowers of all colors, forms and makings, sculpted flowers, handcrafted ones, fantasy flowers and primmy little beauties, flexi flowers and proud, somewhat stiff solitary beauties, flowers growing up on poles and hanging down in vines, blooming in the grass or to be planted in a pot. Red, blue, violet, pink, purple, yellow and any color in between.
And the trees: little trees, huge trees, spring, summer, autumn trees, pine trees, oaks, birches, palms, fantasy trees.
Skillful ones, creative and gorgeous trees. Trees with shadows and without, sculpted ones and prim trees – and the combination of all above mentioned!
Let me tell you about the platform in the sky:
Step into the rainbow and find all and more you might want for your sim, your land, your garden, your mountain side, your home, your li’l paradise, your underwater playground. Walk around and find whatever will inspire you…
You might find it very plain to see that it’s time you learned
about the facts of life from A to Z.
One of these facts say, that I would not have been able to make Noah’s Ark without the help of a very many people of Craft and – very special people from a lot of other Grids in the Metaverse. I want to say thank you to each and every one of you!
And – I would love all of you to continue bringing some more of your own creations! For this purpose I captured an alligator the swamps of Black Sun, and placed it in the tub at the Ark’s landing point. Dump what ever you want to contribute into its greedy little mouth. I will stop by from time to time and arrange all of the contributions on the lower deck.
But of course, those of you that only want to roam about are also welcome. Take some items or relax on the platform.
If you find some item, that is NOT marked copy, please advise me and I will change it as soon as possible. If possible, because there are a few decorative items whose original owners asked me not to have them „copy“…”
I could get used to this guest writer thing! Easy ridin’!
The World’s Most Amazing Estate Manager or WMAEM, who, for those of you who do not follow me on Facebook(sob) is my buddy 111Shawn, who shares my region and does all the techy jobs to shut me the hell up, informed me in the last week of September, that our friend, lady elf and free content creator extraodinaire Selea Core, had set out some Halloween stuff on her grid! Gads!! The holidays were upon us!! And I, with a region that now has a steady stream visitors HAD NO DECORATIONS!! For the poor lost souls who do not follow me on FaceTwit or G+, or regularly read my blog(noooooo), a couple of months ago I turned my region into OpenSim’s first Arcadia Asylum Museum. And now here I was, the hostess with the leastest, being jackhammered by the most calamitous faux pas imaginable!! What would the neighbors think?? What would the social networks whisper?? WHAT WOULD MARTHA STEWART SAY???? Putting my legal team in a holding pattern, I jumped through the gate on Shawns platform and headed over to Selea’s Grid, to grab the couple of pumpkins and tombstones she had pictured on G+. If I could avoid any contact with a grand jury, at least it would be a start.
So I had a LOT of stuff. I was getting ready to set up when the WMAEM did it again! A museum visitor ( The WMAEM does all the talking because I might answer a technical question and that always means blood and paperwork. ) he had been chatting with named Robert Graf , had invited the WMAEM to his Halloween region on the OS Grid, which turned out to be just great! I headed over to take a look!
The cowboy in his undies is Robert. I was grabbing away on my second visit when he popped in and told me that, due to circumstances beyond his control, he was going to have to close the region down the next day! Somewhat taken aback, I complimented him on the fantastic builds, and he laughed and said he couldn’t take credit for most of it! There was stuff from all over, although most of it was from a wonderful builder named Izzy Applewhyte.
I did manage to get in a couple of questions. The very personable Robert Graf has several regions on the OS Grid! They are adult rated, but if you are not offended by sex(gasp) or nudity( giggles), Robert gives away free homesteads on his Galveston and Bolivar regions!
Okay, I now had a Himmalaya sized pile of decorations. The WMAEM and I were having a blast Halloweening the living crap out of the region, and I wanted to post pictures of all our cool work BUT! Maybe it was the pressure of my family life seeping through, maybe it was the proximity of the undead inworld, but I had the most massive paranoia attack! What if this Izzy Applewhyte was some hideous troll I had nothing in common with and she was going to decide that she wanted all her stuff back and call me a thief and who did I think I was…so I sent off a chirpiest IM could muster and waited for everything to go sucky.
I am a moron.Izzy Applewhyte is one of the coolest people I have ever met!! And I get around. She sent me back a super nice e mail saying I was welcome to use her creations, and invited me to over to visit on the OS Grid.
This is a gallery she built for her friend, the well known RL and metaverse artist Jorink. I recognized his work immediatly. And her building skills speak for themselves.This is on region Devotion and Passion. And as much of a sucker as I am for a great gallery full of beautiful, interesting art, things were about to get a whole lot better. Izzy, and her partner Jim Jackson, who was unfortunatly a red cloud for half the visit, asked me if I wanted to see some of their other builds. So we went to the sim next door.
THESE PEOPLE ARE TOTAL ARCADIA HEADS!!!!!!! This is their region, Grunge SPESHUL, Cardboard and Rust!!
I kept thinking I was going to wake up! These two are collecting and creating the most awesome hobo and slum grunge an Arc fanatic could wish for!!! Jim does graffiti textures that say cool shit like “Arcadia Rules”,” Arcadia Forever” which he handed over without without my having to unsheath the ” I run a museum GIMMEGIMMEGIMME!” sledgehammer even once. What a great guy!
They are really doing some really interesting modifications to Arcadia’s stuff. For example, Jim is turning the Slum City pawnshop into a jail! And yes, Izzy is sitting on a toilet in the middle of the building, not because she suffers from some sort of pixilated IBS, but because she is wearing a unique Arcadia Asylum creation called AFK!!! I was so shocked- I had never seen this piece before!! Apparently it was a gift from Arcadia to Izzy, during the great lady’s time on the OS Grid. I didn’t even have time begin whining before one popped into my inventory!!
This build is a sometimes not so slightly surreal rural town. A town with a secret.
Is it the free electric guitars Jim built when he first came from SL?
Is it Izzy’s wonderful grunge creations, strewn around the town?
Is it Arcadias Hobo Mega Sofa, another piece I had never seen before, that Izzy donated to the museum?
Is it in the hearse?
We eventually found the secret, which I won’t give away! (U-N-D-E-R)
The round planet syndrome eventually bit me and it became too late on my part of the world to continue. We concluded the tour in thier beautiful Japanese themed region Riff Raff. It is open to the public, so come and enjoy. Izzy and Jim have several more public OS Grid regions: AppleJack, Enigma Coast, LillyMar, Outta Reach Knobs, and Total Wreck, as well as involvement in Jorinks regions LagNomore and Larga.
Back on Monte Gordo, there is now a box of Jim and Izzy’s donations, which includes Jim’s textures and Izzy’s Grunge Sweet Grungs Sofa set! Thanks Jim and Izzy for the great stuff, and a teriffic time!!! And yes, those are two zombies standing behind me.
They are really cool NPCs the WMAEM thinks he scored on Bob Solos A Virtual World. They growl, and follow you around. It is funny to watch them look for you if you suddenly teleport down, or step on a mine. Oh yes. We have a mine field. Hehe, that Izzy is such a nut!
There is a giant spider invasion, giant rat invasion, a zombie invasion, giant ant invasion, murderous robots, ghosts, spiders, rivers of blood, gangsta Frankenstein, mad scientists,executions , decapitations, skeletons, and my personal hommage to the greatest cinematic achievement of all time, Sharknado. If you should grow weary of copying the endless gore in the upper and lower slum city levels…
When you are halloweened out, you can check out the exciting new media prims I have put out in the Privateer Space Exhibit! This IRL double post by Lauren Weyland has an interview with Arcadia during the construction of the Privateer sim, as well as an essay that compares Arcadia, I think not inaccurately, to seminal American poet Emily Dickinson.
And this is great little film by Buck Flintlock, gives you a real feel for Aley’s Privateer Space universe. We also have some new Privateer items at the concessions stand, thanks to fellow curator Han Held of the Arcadia Asylum Library on Metropolis Grid! Get in on the converstion at the Arcadia All Around G+ Community for all the latest news! And if you would like to see one of our new Arcadia creations in action…
We have thrown Arcadia’s Warp Field Generator around the dragons! It actually makes me a little dizzy, Haruki? Jack? Is that you?
And now my dears I must love you and leave you! I would like to thank my family, the WMAEM,Tosha, Robert, Jim and Izzy, Lauren Weyland, Bettina Tizzy and Buck Flintlock, Bob Solo, Selea Core, Cherry Manga and le gang at Franco Grid,Arcadia Asylum, and of course all of you, for joining me on my small adventures! Your company means the world to me! The sweetest of dreams and the brightest of days to you all! Until next time, Adieu!