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Landless …

Well, I decided to sell my little parcel of land and downgrade my account from premium. I enjoyed owning it and creating the garden but now I’ve moved on. I guess I was fed up with the ban lines that kept appearing around the sim so I offered it to a neighbour who was expanding his holdings and he was happy to accept. I didn’t lose any money on it … which is a rare occurrence in SL, I gather!

So now this fox is just chilling out for the summer – maybe I’ll see you around in Sl sometime?

Recently, I decided to get a new furry avatar and settled on the Marble Fox from Lost Creatures. The black Aventity fox was a lovely avatar but somehow it looked quite dark and serious – I wanted something lighter and a little more frivolous. I particularly like the option for Lost Creatures avatars to have a ‘smile’ as well as a serious expression. The tail isn’t quite so expressive though – I liked the way the Aventity tail swished and twitched. So I picked the Marble Fox purple colourway and changed the eyes to yellow. I managed to sneak up on myself while I was dozing on the deck early one evening and took this snap …

Dozing on the deck

A Bijou Garden

Well, I’ve been tinkering and fiddling, removing, placing, moving, replacing and discarding and I’m reasonably happy with the Bijou Garden as it looks. Of course, it looks much nice with graphics options on higher but my poor three year old computer grumbles something awful and I need to make it last another year. Hubby said we would have a new computer next year so I’ll make sure we get oodles of RAM and a great graphics card.

This is the first pic I took, when I’d just rezzed a hedge so I could see how big my parcel was. 1024 looked pretty big to me but that gradually changed as I created the garden.

Elfrida and the (almost) empty garden

This is an interim picture, the first manifestation of the garden, if you want. I was still learning how to move, resize and position objects in the garden. So it was very much a work in progress.

Sitting on the deck at sunset

This is an aerial view of the next phase of the garden. I’d removed most of the stuff and started again because my ideas were outrunning their space.

Bijou Garden 12th May 2008

Next time, I’ll post some better images of the garden taken this month where I bumped the graphics up a notch and managed to get some movement in the water. In the meantime, if you want to check out my Bijou Garden progress photostream on Flickr, you can find it here:  Elfrida Snook – Flickr

I must have had a brainstorm but I decided to go Premium and buy a little parcel on the mainland sim of Clearbrook. It’s only 1024 sq metres but it’s grassy, almost all flat, and it has a small waterfront with a pool. The parcels to the left and right of me are both for sale but are much more expensive than my little parcel. I don’t see me adding either to my land holdings but I hope they are bought by people who use them sensitively.

So now the question is – what to do with my land? Being mainland, it has a low prim count – just 234, I think – so I’m hardly likely to go splashing out on a high prim house to put on my parcel. Actually, I’d like to create a garden and have a corner for Zen meditation with perhaps a skybox as a private space. Although I realise that ‘Anything Goes’ in Second Life, I would prefer to create something harmonious rather than a jangling muddle of conflicting objects. So yesterday I spent some time looking around houses and garden centres, searching for the right combination of house + plants to make my little parcel a pleasant and welcoming place.

So do I opt for oriental, tropical, English cottage garden or what? I loved walking round the garden centre yesterday and it is really much better to actually stand in front of the plant or tree you are planning to buy because images on SLExchange or OnRez are so difficult to visualise properly. I’m tempted by tropical ….

About a week ago I registered a human alt called Sparkle Champagne and I’ve spent the last few days creating her simple pictorial guide to Orientation Island and Help Island on Second Life. You can find it here -

Sparkle in Second Life

The blog stats on this blog prompted me to create the website because so many search terms seemed to point to people desperately looking for a way off Orientation Island in particular. Second Life is a complicated place and the process of registering, logging in and then negotiating the tutorials on Orientation Island seems to be defeating many folk who give up in disgust and don’t bother to try again. So much for Linden Labs’ claim of several million residents …. how many are regularly active inworld, I wonder?

Anyway, I uploaded Sparkle’s Guide today and posted it on the Second Life forums. Now I’m posting it here in the hope that people who NEED this guide will be able to visit and find out how to escape from the maze that is Orientation Island.

Please leave a comment if it helps you :)

It always amazes me how fluid and ever-changing the internet seems to be. It runs from one extreme to another. One webpage might have been frozen in time for months and even years without change, probably wildly out-of-date and no longer relevant. Another webpage might appear one day and disappear the next.

These somewhat pessimistic thoughts are provoked by the discovery that Benja Kepler and the excellent video tutorial blog he/she was keeping on WordPress has vanished into thin air. The blog has been deleted and the video “How to leave Orientation Island” seems to have been removed from YouTube. According to the ‘Snap’ preview, the last entry on the blog was over 31 weeks ago. There is a brief cut-off snippet in the ‘Snap’ preview window about removing the vidtuts because they might be now, or become in the future, rather confusing.

However, with a little diligent searching, I managed to find Benja’s YouTube Video Index:

Benja Kepler on YouTube

and clicked on the “How to Leave Orientation Island” … to find that the link still works. The video came up for me. Anyone else care to try it out and see if it works for you too?

There’s that mutability issue again, isn’t it? Second Life is changing all the time in response to its citizens needs (or their needs as perceived by the Second Life management) and things become out-of-date.

Of course, there’s still the official Second Life Wiki page where you can find all the SL video tutorials:

Second Life Wiki – Video Tutorials

It’s just a matter of knowing where to look :)

I’ve been into SL a couple of times recently but yesterday evening was the most frustrating visit. On the previous visit I’d been conversing with a brown foxy gentleman and realised that, while his tail was swishing to and fro, my beautiful long black bushy tail was noticeably absent :(

So I tried to rectify the problem when I visited yesterday evening. Well, I tried everything to attach that damned tail but nothing worked – it usually ended up about a hands length behind me level with the bottom of my ribcage. I took it off and put it on … took it off and reattached it to a different spot … took it off … logged out … logged in … and reattached it. Absolutely nothing worked.

Then I got logged out of SL when I teleported to a different region … three times :(

In the end, I just gave it up as a bad job and went to bed, feeling very glad that I wasn’t actually a ‘Paying Customer’

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