Do you ever have those moments in life where it feels like your karmic balance has reached its peak, and wonderful people, experiences, and happenstances begin flowing in? That’s the best way I can describe these last few weeks, really since right around my birthday, which is especially poignant and profound, considering the passing of the baton from one year to the next is often cause for strife or worrisome self-reflection. But no, not this year. I’m feeling uplifted and energized, awoken and alive, as though wildfires have been stirred from the quiet ashes that had been slumbering and smoldering inside. It’s all sounds very poetic and romanticized, I know, but sometimes those are the only words that speak to my heart. Perhaps better borrowed from the lush lyrics of Van Morrison, I feel like the world has on a mission to “rock [my] gypsy soul”, and now I’m on the most magnificent flow I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing for a long, long time. ♡
“Hark now, hear the sailors cry
Smell the sea, and feel the sky
Let your soul and spirit fly
Into the mystic …”
Maitreya Body – Lara v3.5
Genesis Lab Head & Skin – Melissa
Damien Fate Eyelashes – FATELashes v2.0
Inkheart Eyes – Astral Eyes (Garden) for A Midsummer Night’s Dream Hunt, through July 21st *
Elua Hair – Daria (Browns HUD)
Nanika Tattoo – Anika (in White for Maitreya, Belleza, Slink, Omega & System Layers) New Release @ On9, through June 28th *
Style & Pose
SlackGirl Jewelry – Farah Earrings New Release @ On9, through June 28th *
Mimikri Swimsuit – Joli Leather Bikini (Nude) New Release @ On9, through June 28th *
AlaskaMetro<3 Anklets – Jess Fringed Anklets (Metallics Pack) New Release @ On9, through June 28th *
Label Motion Pose – Iggy Pose 4 New Release @ Tres Chic, through July 5th *
Destination & Inspiration
I also want to take a moment to thank the amazing people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in Second Life since I returned in late April. Some were friendships rekindled and renewed from last year, while others are newly formed, and all are so incredibly dear to me. I mentioned to a friend that I had been making an especial effort to get out and enjoy the grid, and she noted with some regret that she needfully finds herself spending so much time in her skybubble taking photographs and writing, sorting inventory and getting organized, in order to stay atop her blogging commitments. I know this tendency so well that the words felt as though they had been pulled from my own experience.
But for my own enjoyment and well-being, and after such an encouraging response to what I wrote weeks ago about the anxieties of making new connections, I’ve come to the realization that for me to genuinely and sincerely express appreciation for the virtual world, I need to get out there and experience it. It may mean blogging with slightly less frequency, or getting a bit further behind on keeping up with Flickr, but after such an extraordinary month and a half back in Second Life, I don’t want to risk those impassioned inner fires burning out once more. Even if that means something so simple as being folded in a relaxing pose on a kindred spirit’s boat, my heart bestirred by the sound of the waves and the gaze upon a beautiful vista, it still makes me feel feel as though I were soaring.
“And when that foghorn blows,
I will be coming home …”
One of the many things I had always longed to do in Second Life was to visit Elysion, a deliciously named sim with a mythical (in my own mind) presence on the grid. Its Places listing has a wonderful come hither vibe, promising a “lush adult environment catering to the sensual and artistic side of your second life.” To say I found it alluring and intriguing is wildly understated!
Friends and loved ones from my First Life know me fondly as one with a fascination with the sensual and evocative, the artistic and the epicurean. But this facet isn’t something I’ve yet delved and dwelled within on the grid, as my naturally shy and quiet nature often turns me away from curiosity and toward the safe, the familiar. But I feel a keen desire to expand my horizons this time around, so with a tiny flutter in my belly, I landed at Elysion, paid the group enrollment fee for sim access (L$650 at the time of this writing), and slowly began to explore.
I’m delighted to say that the people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting at Elysion (as well as at at Blithe, a kindred sim that also requires group membership), have been wonderfully interesting and thoughtful encounters. And it makes for a very welcome reminder for me: always keep an open mind and heart. You’ll never stop being fascinated and amazed at what flows in. ♡
Body // Lara Mesh Body v3.5 by Maitreya
Head & Skin // Melissa by Genesis Lab
Ears // Steking Ears Season 5 by Mandala
Hair // Vega (Essential HUD) by Bold & Beauty
* Eyes // Ardent Eyes (Citrus v1) by Avi-Glam for Cosmopolitan, through May 21st
Nails // Jewels Gold (Maitreya, Slink, Eve, Omega Appliers) by alaskametro<3
Tattoo (Torso) // Flowers (Maitreya, Slink, TMP, Omega Appliers) by Aurica Store
* Tattoo (Leg) // Rose 2 Common (Maitreya, Slink, TMP, Omega Appliers) by Aurica Store for Fantasy Gacha Carnival, through June 7th
Piercing // Gold Teardrop Septum (White) by Yummy for Collabor88, through June 6th
Necklace // Chevron Necklace (Gold) by Paper Arrow
Lingerie // Spring Bra & Panties (Black) by TETRA for Uber, through May 22nd
Shoes // Cecile Heels (Maitreya High) by Ricielli for The Dressing Room, through May 14
Pose & Destination
It’s really marvelous how genuinely, sublimely happy you can feel, even when life is just smoothly sailing along without any particular excitement, surprises, or razzle-dazzle. I think that’s the pinnacle of contentment: being happy where you are, but eager and welcoming for more.
It makes me think of my friends Kess and Chloe, both of whom have expressed wishing to explore the grid more, while so often finding themselves at familiar and comfortable locales. There is a certain bliss in the familiar, one that I most definitely feel myself, while also longing to indulge in my wanderlust. How often I wish for more hours in the day! But even though I’m barely sleeping and finding only rare, spare time for exploring, I’m still so keenly happy to be home again.
I had wondered and worried if perhaps Second Life might feel like it was falling into gentle decline, with Project Sansar nipping at our heels and untold new sights and experiences to explore. But for me, SL is like that amazing local coffee house or indie record store where you can go to relax, indulge in new finds or old favorites, and feel perfectly at ease. Even if I’m just standing in my skybox, naked but for a hairbase and a smile, I still feel contentment at being in and of the virtual world. ♡
Body // Lara Mesh Body v3.5 by Maitreya
Head & Skin // Melissa by Genesis Lab
Hair // Ursula (Blondes 03) by TRUTH (Sale Room)
Eyes // Specular Eyes (Forest) by Avi-Glam
Nails // Diva (Gold) by alaskametro<3
Head Circlet // Pearl Drop Headpiece (Gold) by Amala
Jewelry // Body Jewelry (Gold) by Apple May Designs for We <3 Roleplay, through May 31st
Ring by // Sweet Rose Ring (Gold) by Fawny
Dress // Tropical Maxi Dress (Fatpack) by Pixicat
Shoes // Faith Sandals (Cherry for Maitreya Flat) by Fri.
Pose & Destination
When the virtual world first beckoned me to begin my Second Life anew last year, I found early on that I was really fascinated with shopping on the SL Marketplace. It felt like an interactive catalog, with a variety of search and sort options, and I really liked that I could load up my cart, chill in a sandbox, and have a lovely bunch of parcels delivered right to me, ready for my unboxing pleasure.
These days, I do still find myself shopping the Marketplace on occasion; I particularly love it for purchasing gacha items, which is largely how I found makeup appliers for my beloved Genesis Lab mesh head. But last year, my friend Kess Crystal inspired me with her wonderful Mainstore Monday series, which found her sharing finds from designers’ mainstore locations, which she hoped would inspire others to broaden their horizons, rather than exclusively exploring the vast array of shopping events.
I loved this concept, but sadly failed to do it proper justice before going on hiatus. So this time around, I decided to make it a point to visit mainstores as often as events, because if I loved something a designer created for Collabor88, Uber, or similar, I was sure to be dazzled by items from their older, non-“event exclusive” collections as well. And I’ve been enjoying it immensely! I’ll never bid farewell to my love for shopping the events; it’s one of my great pleasures in Second Life, and I just eased back into maintaining my SL Fashion & Shopping Events Tracker to boot. But mainstore visits will definitely become a deeper part of my style-creating groove and technique!
However, it’s a bit funny that I wrote all of that to accompany a picture that largely does not contain mainstore releases. Silly Ever! But my look does contain two items that came right from the Marketplace, so it all makes sense in a roundabout way. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it! ♡
Jewelry // Rope Necklace (Gold) by LUXE for Uber, through May 22nd
Top // Holli Tank Top Applier (Bronze) by alaskametro<3
Jacket // Amsterdam Denim Jacket (Faded Blue) by Emery for Collabor88, through May 6th
Skirt // Vintage Maxi Skirt by Lowkey Shawty
Shoes // Brazilia Sandals (Maitreya High) by KC Couture
Pose & Destination
The other day whilst enjoying some Flickr browsing (such a lovely way to bliss out, enjoying the amazing and inspiring virtual world photography shared there), I happened upon a picture by my friend Brandon which was accompanied by a song in the description. You find this quite often on Flickr, and I don’t always click but something sparked my curiosity, and I really enjoyed the song he linked to. Later, seeing another picture where his song was by an artist we both like, I cheekily hinted about the potential for photo inspired by a tune she had covered. He met the challenge brilliantly, and it really motivated me to try something similar.
The lovely Sand Dunes sim provided a perfect backdrop for my photos, which were inspired by the song linked below them. I think I may start looking to my music library for inspiration more often, as I’ve really been immersed in music lately, rotating between Spotify, Google Play Music, 8tracks and Songza. Always on the lookout for the ideal streaming music service that provides an extensive library of music, as well as awesome curated playlists and radio stations that populate music based on a song or artist seed. (Pandora is wonderful, but those skip limits just kill me!) If you have a favorite, I’d love to know in the comments! ♥
Body / Maitreya | Mesh Body – Lara v3.4
Skin / Lara Hurley | Ale Midtone | Group Gift
Moles / Glam Affair | Mokatana – Moles 1
* Hair / Besom | Zim – Fade Dye HUD
Eyes / Avi-Glam | Premium Eyes – Grey v2 | SL Marketplace
Lashes / Mon Cheri | Falsies Mesh Eyelashes – Upper
* Eyeshadow / Nova Bodyshop | Skylar Eyeshadow – 002 | IDK Event, through September 10th
Nails / alaskametro<3 | Metallic Pack – Pastels Silver (Maitreya, Slink, Eve & Omega Appliers) | SL Marketplace
* Sunglasses / KC Couture | Vogue Sunglasses – Worn on Head
* Earrings / ERSCH | Lace Earrings – White | Classically Kinky Event, through August 31st
* Jewelry / LUXE | LePearl Bangle & Rings – Silver | Kustom9 Event, through September 10th
* Outfit / Salt & Pepper | Kiara Romper – Ocean | Tres Chic Event, through September 5th
Shoes / Pure Poison | Arlequin Pumps – Light Gray (for Maitreya, Belleza, TMP and Slink High feet)
Poses & Destination