Monday, 24 December 2007

First days in CDS

I made my first visit to the Confederation of Democratic Sims (CDS) on December 4th 2007, about a week after I was born into Second Life. I teleported into the Colonia Nova park and then flew around a bit. I saw two people on a frozen river downhill from an office building, and tried to land next to them. With newbie awkwardness I missed the edge of the sim and landed in the ocean, finding myself under water. Someone said “lol.” I leapt back up into the air and came down near Rose Springvale and Michel Manen, with whom I spoke briefly. I then flew uphill across the Alpine Meadow covered in snow, and came down in the village below the city of Neufreistadt. I saw a mat saying “Welcome” in front of an open door, and went in to meet Jamie Palisades. After a short chat I visited the town’s main square, and was about to enter a bookstore when I crashed.

The next day I visited Colonia Nova again, and ran into a group made up of Rain Ninetails, Bjerkel Eerie, Sonja Strom and Jamie Palisades, discussing how to make a snow bridge, so that skiers could cross the road at the bottom of Alpine Meadow. They invited me to join them, so I watched them fabricate an experimental snow bridge. Arria Perrault joined us for a while, and Jamie Palisades complimented her on her coat. A bit later I saw a larger group seated outdoors in Alpine Meadow. I walked up and listened, but had trouble following their talk, which was about topics such as the Linden Lab carbon balance. Moon Adamant sent me an IM telling me that it was a meeting of the CSDF faction. I excused myself, and though someone said I was welcome to stay, I left to explore Neufreistadt city.

On December 7th I met Symo Kurko in front of his house in Alpine Meadow. He offered me a cup of coffee, and taught me how to drink it by "wearing" it. I liked his deers, and he pointed out the eagle flying overhead. I returned to Colonia and ran into Rose Springvale, whom I asked about buying land. She showed me a plot for sale in a corner of the Colonia Nova city, with a house on it which pleased me. Brian Livingston, who had been working on his club next door, dropped by and said hello.

The next day I met Lilith Ivory, in front of the plot she had just bought in Alpine Meadow. She told me about her shop in Neufreistadt, where her heavy scripts create so much lag that she can hardly move. The day after that I succeeded in buying my house in Colonia Nova, after talking with owner Jo Sapeur, who gave me a tip on how to buy Lindens through SL Exchange (for some reason my regular account was blocked). After making the purchase I roamed through Colonia Nova and met Alexicon Kurka in his gallery. He was soon joined by friends, so I went my way. And on Sunday December 10th I attended a Guild Meeting, where there was much talk about modifications and additions to Alpine Meadow. At the end of the meeting I admitted that I still had to learn to make a plywood box....

Over the next week I tried to learn to make things. In the privacy of my house I experimented with making a plywood box. Wanting to expand one of its sides, I accidentally grabbed a wall of my house instead, and pulled it out of place. I then suffered torture trying to put it back into just the correct spot. I more or less succeeded, but a few days later an even worse mishap occurred. When trying to grab a silly plywood box, to put it into my inventory, I instead grabbed a wall of my house, and pulled the whole house into inventory! The only way I knew to take it back out was to "wear" it, and then detach it, but doing that would put the house back in the wrong position. I rushed outside to find someone who could give me advice. I ran into Alexicon, but he was very busy preparing an event. Not wanting to disturb him, I tried to figure it out by myself, and experimented with “wearing” the house and then dropping it into the street. That seemed to work, because the house I had dropped sat there astride the road, although its orientation had changed (I had turned my body when the house was on my head). I took the house back into inventory and returned to my plot, but when I tried to drop it there something very strange happened. There was a bit of reality warp, with a few colored fragments strewn about, and what looked like spit on the screen. The house was gone, and was no longer in my inventory either. I think part of it was over the sim boundary, in non-existent space, and so the software just eliminated it. I sent IMs to Rose Springvale and Sudane Erato, and went off line.

When I came back on line later, Sudane had left me a message saying she had no copy, but would rebuild the house (in fact, she had copies of similar pieces). I flew around looking for someone to talk with about my destroyed house, and found Delia Lake in her office in Neufreistadt village. She showed me her dog, and spoke of Michel Manen and Al-Andalus, which had just opened a few days before. I left Delia and her dog, and teleported to Al-Andalus to have a look.

On Sunday December 16th I found my house put back into place by Sudane, who joined me there to show me how to take ownership of it. She then had to rush to the Representative Assembly meeting. On learning that the public can attend, I went along and sat through part of a discussion about creating a CDS tour.

In the week following that I decided to buy some furniture for my house. Brian showed me the Roma shop, where I bought a Roman chair. But when I tried to put it in my house, I lost it. I tried to wear it and drop it (newbie mistakes), and like the house it just disappeared, and was no longer in inventory either. I sent an IM to Torin Golding asking him if he could replace it. The next day I went to the Cleopatra shop, where MT Lundquist and ThePrincess Parisis offered me a free Egyptian chair to replace the lost Roman one. But when we went to install it in my house, the Roman one was back again. Maybe I hadn't lost it after all, or maybe Torin had given me a new one. At any rate, I now have two chairs.

The evening of December 22nd there was the CDS holiday ball, on the frozen river in Colonia. I arrived when it was in full swing, with about 30 or 40 residents dancing to music that I couldn't hear. Many IMs later ThePrincess realised that I needed to change my preferences to allow audio streaming, and I was finally hooked into Gabrielle Riel's podcast. I also learned to activate the standard eight dance steps using short-cut keys, and got into the party. At a pause the ranks thinned out, leaving the hardcore partyers, including notably Michel Manen, who had been dancing with Rose Springvale, and who now went on dancing alone. Other late-night dancers included ThePricess and MT, Bjerkel Eerie and Rain Ninetails, Gabrielle Riel and Rascal Blanco, Jamie Palisades in a kilt, and Binta Amat, dancing in a flash of streaking lights. I finally said goodbye, and went back to my house, where I tried to arrange my two chairs. Wanting to turn one of the chairs, I accidentally grabbed my house again, and found it pivoting around wildly in all directions. After a long hairy struggle, I finally managed to put the house back into more or less the right place. And then I went to bed.

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