As my Rez Day approached, I looked back at this year, wondering if I could come up with a single line of text: "What has SL has meant to me".
To beign I had to wonder ~ Who is Lapin Paris? She is not so much a creation as she is a component of my personality. I have started building and look forward to my time in the IBM sandbox every day. I'm no great builder. I'm just aspiring to greatness, I am compelled to try. There are genuine artists all around me, AM Radio, Ordinal Malaprop, Intolerable Ginsburg, Oolon Sputnik, Nix Sands, Terry Lightfoot. What they create is art.
One year ago I saw a story on Second Life on the Morning Show. In that short clip on virtual worlds, I saw a house wife, who had three kids and when they went to school, or took a nap, Mom jumped on SL to talk with her friends, and buy clothes. It sounded rather superficial, but I thought, wow, maybe I can make a few friends and that might help me feel more connected to the world. My mobility issues have caused me to spend a lot of time laying down. I longed to feel connected to people.
What I found in SL was much more (as we've learned - the media tends to scratch the surface of Sl, without seeing the larger, more interesting aspects of things) SL was a world of imagination. A place where dreams came true.
Noobie Lapin jumped from event to event thanks to the Events Search. I went to Hair, clothing and bar openings. Played Tringo, discovered Nekos, and Furries, Fairies and Trekkies. I began saving favorite destinations like Bliss Gardens, Silent Sparrow and the Sphynx Dance Club. I made a friend! Starlight Vandeverre, and she was kind enough to IM me periodically and we caught up on what the other was seeing, doing, discovering in SL.
In December I attended a Ball in a magical place called Caledon. It was held in a beautiful Ice Palace created by Shenlei Flasheart on a gorgeous sim - Caledon One. I was immediately taken by the place. Every time I logged on , I began hanging out in Caledon, exploring all 6 sims! The steampunk element fit right in with my lifelong affection for Jules Verne and all things Retrotech, and my passion for Charles Dickens mixed with a liberal dose of Mary Poppins. Caledon at that time was a happy, beautiful environment, with an amazing attention to detail. I found myself buying Victorian clothes, and logging out and back in at the alley beside Bryndal Ellison's building in Vic City. I attended Christmas caroling, ice skating and Christmas Balls. It was so beautiful.
In January I met Desmond Shang and asked him, face to face, if I might be able to purchase a parcel. He was kind enough to take a chance on the silly little Faux French girl (probably becasue Lapin means BUNNEH!!! in french!!!) and I got my land in Mayfair. I met Jess Patton and immediately formed a little crush on him. He was so very kind and warm. I really enjoyed our talks.
On January 1st, I held my first party. Three people showed up. Jess, Tamala Tombola, a neighbor who was very nice from across the street, and a Swedish friend of mine, Mandrake Araw, who preferred to wear a purple top hat, cape and one blinging ice skate, leaving his left foot bare.
I opened a studio, where I showed my RL paintings and I wanted to paint portraits of the celebrities of Caledon and started with a protrait of Virrginia Tombola. I made more friends, Burton Newall, Vi Paravane, Roy Smashcan, Zenmondo Wormser.They were hardly housewives who wanted to buy clothes and talk! These people wanted to BUILD and SCRIPT!! I began to see their fantastic builds, their working trians and carts and steam powered whatsits and clothes. I discovered the PRIM!!!!
In late February, Desmond asked me if I might be interested in chairing the efforts of the American Cancer Society and help to rally Caledon to contribute. As a Cnacer survivor myself, I was honoured. It was my intention to create fun events and bring love and togetherness to the communtiy. I wanted to be like Shenlei, making events that were lovely. I had no idea that the SLRFL would be so controversial and that things done in an effort to help fight cancer, were taken the wrong way, tossed in a blender and came out smelling like funk. Believe me. I was very disheartened by the actions and comments made. The best part of SLRFL was working with Alfonso Avalanche, Fuschia begonia, Terry Lightfoot, Oolon Sputnik, Virrginia Tombola, Erasmus Margulies, Lavendar Beaumont and Jules Whittlesea. These people and the one who shall remain nameless, were the people I could depend on every day. They were my strength and became, over the next 6 months, my best friends.
I took a parcel in Tanglewood which became the SLRFL headquarters. This is where I met Violet Schnabel, Jen Wise, Viderian Vollmar and Mordecai Scaggs. I dearly loved them, and I'm sad now that they have left Tanglewood. The best days I've had in SL were when I would just stand in front of the SLRFL HQ, and have a chance ot talk to Denver Hax, Jen Wise and Viderian. What fun that was.
After the RFL ended, and with it my IM STORMS, I felt a bit lost. Fortunately, my love and I had an opportunity to really get to know one another and to become a strong couple. We spent time roaming around SL, dancing, shopping, playing. It was a time of introspection.
Now I have joined Oolon's Caledon Studio team, and I hope that we can make some fantastic machinimas.
I am friends with AM Radio, and I was just so delighted yesterday when he stood beside me in IBM, building. I kept thinking, I'm making a fountian, next to a real, genuine artist.
So, what is SL to me?
It is the people.
as my love says, "You are my SL".
and to him and to all of you, I say the same, "You are my SL".
and I love you for it.