2008.05.03 13:00 - Electricity in the air

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    The guardian at this meeting was Pema Pera and the comments are his.  


    That afternoon, some of us got together an hour early, in preparation for the new schedule, starting next week. The idea was to spread out from three to four meetings a day, now including the night shift as well. Given that I would be awake during the SLT night, while in Japan, it would be natural for me to take the 1 am, 7 am, and 7 pm shifts. The afternoon shift, at 1 pm, would be at 5 am in Japan, so I will happily leave that to others.

    To fill the afternoon slot, seven regular participants had volunteered to each take responsibility for one day of the week. During that day the person responsible would act as a kind of greeter, making sure no one would come to an empty tea house between 1:00 pm and 1:30 pm, SLT. And instead of greeter, we had dreamt up a better term: guardian, guarding the mid-day time in the heat house. Each guardian had agreed to either be there on his or her day, or else to make sure someone else would be there, in case he or she would have a conflicting schedule.

    Storm had come up with a few alternative naming for the days, depending on who would be on duty, and I added a few more names to the list, so that we wound up with the following new names for the seven days of the week, starting with Monday (our new schedule will start on Monday, 5/5): Skyday, Genday, Calday, Stormday, Soloday, Dakday and Maxday.

    When I arrived, Maxine and Dakini were already in the tea house. Dakini had started to teach Dakini about camera control.
    At the same time Genesis arrived as well, and Storm would soon follow.

    Maxine Walden: and, oh, hello, Genesis
    Dakini Rhode: then to manipulate that view you can use a combination of the Alt key and the Right mousekey
    Dakini Rhode: Hi there, genesis!
    genesis Zhangsun: Hi nice to see you again Dakini
    Maxine Walden: thanks,
    Dakini Rhode: Hi Storm!
    genesis Zhangsun: and nice to meet you Maxine
    Storm Nordwind: Hi everyone
    Maxine Walden: Oh, is that storm …yes, nice to meet you
    Pema Pera: hi there!
    Pema Pera: I have terrible lag can’t see a thing yet — sorry!
    Dakini Rhode: Storm, please contribute to this “indoctrination” where you know some good tricks
    Maxine Walden: Genesis, saw your group email yesterday I think it was
    Dakini Rhode: Hello there, Pema!
    Pema Pera: hi everyone!
    Maxine Walden: Hi, Pema
    Dakini Rhode: He PPP !
    Dakini Rhode: Persistent Pema Pera
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Pema Pera: ah
    Pema Pera: Playing Pema Pera!
    Maxine Walden: wonderful, Dakini
    Dakini Rhode: triple P - ah, quadruple P
    Dakini Rhode: Persistent Playing Pema Pera
    Maxine Walden: yes, playing persistent and perspicacious…
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Dakini Rhode: Pema, good choice of initials lol
    Pema Pera: I’ll become a steam engine
    Pema Pera: p p p p p
    Dakini Rhode: now you got me laughing
    Maxine Walden: also prosperous for the group

    That morning, soon after I woke up, I had gotten the wildest idea yet, concerning our forest plans. I had already sent Storm an IM about it.

    Pema Pera: Storm did you get my crazy idea IM?
    Storm Nordwind: I did. And yes it’s crazy!
    Pema Pera: Dakini, are you ready?
    Pema Pera: for this?
    Dakini Rhode: I just got a crazy email from someone else
    Storm Nordwind: I think Pera’s idea will beat all for craziness
    Pema Pera: ahhaha
    Pema Pera: okay
    Pema Pera: everybody seated?
    Maxine Walden: let’s hear it, the crazy idea
    Pema Pera: seatbelts fastened?
    Dakini Rhode: He suggests switching from SL to OpenLife Grid, which is less expensive
    Pema Pera: okay
    Pema Pera: no
    Dakini Rhode: okies
    Pema Pera: not that radical
    Pema Pera: I propose that we extend the forest to the Western sea . . . .

    Like I guess most anyone here, I too had never concerned myself with sims more than one or two removed from Rieul and Mieum — until this morning, that is.

    Dakini Rhode: how far is that, Pema?
    Maxine Walden: WOW, what does that mean?
    Pema Pera: many sims
    Pema Pera: please look at your map
    Pema Pera: and zoom out a bit
    Storm Nordwind: About 2 sims diagonally from the half sim
    Dakini Rhode checks her map
    Storm Nordwind: or more
    Pema Pera: from Rieul to the west
    Pema Pera: Digeut
    Pema Pera: Nieun
    Pema Pera: Giyeok
    Pema Pera: and then Orgamast
    Pema Pera: talatta!!!
    Pema Pera: the sea
    Pema Pera: (Xenophon)
    Dakini Rhode: Do you suggest soliciting the cooperation of others to accomplish this ambitious feat?
    Maxine Walden: I find a cautiousness creeping in…
    Pema Pera: well yes
    Pema Pera: by asking people in friendly ways
    Pema Pera: to sell their land
    Maxine Walden: please go on with your idea, we need to hear it all
    Pema Pera: strategically
    Pema Pera: as I have done so far
    Pema Pera: worked well
    Dakini Rhode: the beachfront properties are the most difficult to obtain
    Pema Pera: but look at Giyeok
    Pema Pera: SW coner
    Pema Pera: half yellow

    This seemed like a good time to broach the news that I had already started to take steps in that direction, the direction of the sea, while at that time not yet realizing what I was doing — I had meant only to spread out a few more tentacles from the forest.

    Pema Pera: Dakini, again: are you ready for more info?
    Dakini Rhode is a little cautious…
    Dakini Rhode: sure, Pema!
    Pema Pera: Yesterday night I did stay up a bit longer after all . . . after having met Gen, who then went to bed in RL, and then Dakini, who then went to bed in RL, and then me going west as not-so-young man ;;>)
    Pema Pera: I bought 10k land in Solbim, north of Nieun, just above the Nieun-Solbim border
    Pema Pera: was cheap
    Pema Pera: and available
    Pema Pera: after consulting Quan Yin oracle:
    Pema Pera: The chains are broken. The monkey slips back to his cave. Only illusions imprison the joyous heart.
    Pema Pera: free to move without chains
    Pema Pera: monkey mind will find caves in our forest
    Pema Pera: playful heart smiles at illusions
    Pema Pera: well, that’s the news of today
    Dakini Rhode: Pema, of course you’re right and the monkey mind is what thinks of things like Tier…
    Storm Nordwind wonders at the greater purpose behind all this
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Dakini Rhode: So you have taken a bold and adventurous step…
    Dakini Rhode: yes, let’s talk about the vision
    Pema Pera: I envision a hundred Play-as-Being players having little retreat places here and there in the forest . . . .
    Pema Pera: a community
    Pema Pera: you can walk for hours
    Pema Pera: visiting fellow players
    genesis Zhangsun: that sounds lovely
    Pema Pera: hanging out
    Pema Pera: thanks, Gen!
    Storm Nordwind hopes Pema is not coming down with a bad case of essellitis and may need to lie down
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Pema Pera: can’t lay down here, am in the train from Princeton to New York, just past Newark airport
    Dakini Rhode: I was thinking about the relationship of virtual “space” on the mind…
    Storm Nordwind: It’s a breathtaking vision
    Pema Pera: so we can arrive by ship, and walk to the tea house in Rieul
    Pema Pera: and go back by balloon

    Dakini brought up an important point.

    Dakini Rhode: I think this teahouse charms people partly because of it’s size… it feels intimate
    Dakini Rhode: When the group grows large, we will need more spaces this size
    Dakini Rhode: A smallish size group also facilitates discussion
    nPema Pera: a chain of tea houses, like the missions in Southern California
    Maxine Walden: the community idea is lovely, (and I know that trainride) but perhaps
    Dakini Rhode: Yes, Pema, what do you think?
    Pema Pera: I think a community of communities
    Pema Pera: each having local meeting places
    Dakini Rhode: A large gathering space would be useful too, more for talks
    genesis Zhangsun: very ambitious!
    Pema Pera: and occasional larger gatherings
    Pema Pera: yes
    Dakini Rhode: yes!
    Pema Pera: like in Island
    Pema Pera: oldest parliament
    Pema Pera: thingvallier
    Storm Nordwind: Thingvellir
    Dakini Rhode: we’d need to devote a sim or two sims to the larger space, to reduce lag
    Pema Pera: Yes, Dakini, Magoja will do that
    Pema Pera: for a start
    Pema Pera: dedicated sim, Magoja, I own 3/4
    Pema Pera: and only one person ever uses the other 1/4
    Pema Pera: so the core groups should each typically have half a dozen people
    Pema Pera: like here
    Pema Pera: and we’ll just get more and more of them
    Pema Pera: naturally
    Dakini Rhode: I was thinking along those lines, too, Pema
    Pema Pera: really, Dakini??
    Dakini Rhode: lol if we go over our interleaved chat lines… i think a pattern will emerge
    Pema Pera: hahaha

    Storm interleaved back to my last Magoja line.

    Storm Nordwind: Although I note the 1/4 prohibits object entry and has a vicious intruder bouncer
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: reminds us of samsara
    Pema Pera: choed practice ;>)
    Storm Nordwind chuckles
    Pema Pera: when we get too idyllic
    Dakini Rhode: these are matters that can be overcome in one way or another :-)
    Pema Pera: neighbor reminds us of other side of reality . . . .
    Pema Pera: for free!
    Storm Nordwind: haha
    Pema Pera: (Dutch and Scottish minds appreciate that part)
    Dakini Rhode: Very true, and see how this sim has changed over a short time… things are very workable here….
    Storm Nordwind: There is a pattern to the yellow space
    Dakini Rhode: Another P for you, Pema - patience
    genesis Zhangsun: If you build it they will come ;)
    Dakini Rhode: with a little patience, persistence, “pounds” dont hurt…. it’s pretty workable
    genesis Zhangsun: lol
    Storm Nordwind: from Solbim down through Giyeok
    Storm Nordwind: and west to the sea
    Storm Nordwind: There is even auction land in Nieun
    Pema Pera: but not yet online, right?
    Dakini Rhode: Lots of intimate spaces, natural landscape spaces, and a large space for gatherings
    Pema Pera: yes, Gen, we are all following Dakini: if you built it they will come!
    Pema Pera: like right here
    Storm Nordwind: All along the linden road
    Dakini Rhode: by intimate I’m referring to size :-)
    Pema Pera: in this tea house
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: Storm
    Pema Pera: I realized that
    Pema Pera: you know
    Pema Pera: we may talk with the LIndens
    Pema Pera: and do something special with that part of the road
    Dakini Rhode: I’d actually like to experiment with the affect of the virtual space on perception and feeling
    Pema Pera: arbor walk . . . something like that
    Pema Pera: yes!

    I thought it would be a good time for yet another gentle challenge for Storm.

    Pema Pera: You’ll have to start practicing ship building, Storm, besides ballooning!
    Dakini Rhode: Peoples’ comments about the teahouse have got me thinking it’s quite powerful - oh yes, ships!
    Storm Nordwind gets out his charts
    Maxine Walden: Feels I may be witnessing the birth of a whole new idea here if this is manageable; have wondered about the question of restraint but think that this feels more like taking new opportunities…yes,
    Pema Pera: Maxine, yes, I feel the same — and have you taken a balloon ride yet? THe rest of us have
    Pema Pera: storm in the sails ! ! !
    Pema Pera: there Storm goes, god speed . . . .
    Maxine Walden: and I have interest also in the affective experience…no I have not had a ballon ride, tho Storm offered that to me earlier…yes, storm as balloon commander — great image
    Storm Nordwind: By the way there is a further ride available to allow Pema’s territory to be viewed
    Storm Nordwind: It leaves from the SW corner of Pema’s plot here
    Maxine Walden: oh, that would be wonderful
    Dakini Rhode: Haha get two psychologists in a room… and we’ll have experiments!
    Maxine Walden: of course, always wondering about different effects upon the mind of different experiences
    Dakini Rhode: I’ve done some RL workshops like that, dealing only with color - the color of the buddha families - amazing how it affects your consciousness

    I harked back to the way I had been able to quite easily connect bits and pieces of land that I had separately bought.

    Pema Pera: Well, I’ll just keep buying cheap yellow pieces along the way and sending IMs to people in between — my experience is that if you are friendly and cheerful and playful, almost half the people are willing to part from their land; I’ve been amazed — by whatever way the vision seems to work
    Storm Nordwind: You are quite right Pema. A little friendliness goess a long way
    Dakini Rhode: Pema many people are relieved to get rid of their land… because of the tier
    Maxine Walden: and the virtual world seems to offer as vivid experience as the RL
    Pema Pera: btw, I will enter a tunnel soon, from Jersey to Manhattan, will loose y’all (>_<)
    Maxine Walden: I know exactly where you are Pema, know that line
    genesis Zhangsun: thanks Pema!
    Pema Pera: funny, isn’t it, Maxine!
    Dakini Rhode: thanks for imparting your vision Pema
    Pema Pera: yw, Gen!
    Pema Pera: We’ll help them, Dakini, save them from their Earthly burdens!
    Storm Nordwind: That’s a great tunnel glyph!
    Dakini Rhode: I can now deal with the more practical things like how to eject people
    Storm Nordwind shakes his head in wonderment
    Dakini Rhode: haha i feel like an administrator
    Pema Pera: my fellow passengers look at me, trying to decide whether I am dangerous giggling by myself without a cell phone . . .
    Dakini Rhode: Pema you are decidedly dangerous!
    Pema Pera: fortunately I am well dressed, coat and tie (!) because I went to a rare formal lunch at my work place
    Storm Nordwind: We do need to sort out the group deeding so the landscaping can be done

    Maxine, like me, was fascinated with the reactions of my fellow train travellers.

    Maxine Walden: Oh, the wonders of it….those train folk would not have a clue about this world
    Dakini Rhode: yes, Storm, have you tried to terraform any of the spaces?
    Storm Nordwind: Not yet Dakini. I’m not aware I have permission yet
    Dakini Rhode: it looks like we have permission but i was unable
    Pema Pera: I think the police is waiting with a straight jacket at Penn Station for this guy with a necktie in coach 6
    Dakini Rhode: this is certainly broadening my horizons
    Dakini Rhode: lol just show them your screen… it looks pretty funny
    Maxine Walden: I can just see the scene, the police at Penn Station…
    Maxine Walden: if necessary I will come and get you out…
    Pema Pera: not believing you can singlehandedly connect Rieul with the sea . . . .
    Dakini Rhode: tell them you’re the longhaired hippie sitting between the monk and the dark angel
    Pema Pera: hahahaha
    Maxine Walden: we may be speaking via joking about the potential disconnect
    Maxine Walden: between various aspects of reality and how threatened
    Maxine Walden: certain states of mind can be
    Maxine Walden: in the presence of others which have not be comprehended previously
    Pema Pera: bfn!
    Storm Nordwind: k

    My parting words were spoken at the tunnel entrance and then my internet connection silenced. I had a lot to think about, during the last few minutes of my ride, while the sound of the wheels on the tracks echoed loudly from the tunnel walls.

    Later Dakini would send me a log of the rest of the conversation. Most of it formed a type of Guardian 101, including how to rez extra sitting cushions and other details. The most interesting part was the training Dakini gave about how to deal with real trouble makers, a rarity in Rieul, but not completely unheard of.

    Dakini Rhode: There have been a few occasions when i decided to eject an avatar from this space
    Storm Nordwind: I remember in Tara Ling
    Dakini Rhode: usually if someone shows up who is troublesome, bothering other people, etc… I will explain what we’re about and ask them to respect it
    Dakini Rhode: If they don’t respond to my request, I’ve found that further conversation is usually futile
    Storm Nordwind: It is always wise to use Hanlon’s Razor
    Storm Nordwind: “Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by stupidity”
    Storm Nordwind: A little education usually works
    Storm Nordwind: But if it doesn;’t then it really is pointless arguing
    genesis Zhangsun: I like that Storm
    Maxine Walden: yes, civilized approach
    Dakini Rhode: so in that case, i don’t hesitate to use the eject button
    Maxine Walden: how do you do that?
    Dakini Rhode: the guardians have all been empowered to use it
    Storm Nordwind: So you have to make a decision. And know what the tipping point is. And after that, to act quickly and decisively
    Dakini Rhode: i will demonstrate the eject button
    Storm Nordwind: perhaps it would be good to demonstrate say on me
    Storm Nordwind: Tell them as you go
    Dakini Rhode: i’m pointing to Storm’s avatar
    Dakini Rhode: right click - you get the pie shape - click More > and you see Eject in the second pie shape which comes up
    Dakini Rhode: please try this
    Storm Nordwind: Make sure you have the right group active first
    Dakini Rhode: yes you will need the zen retreat group activated to use this feature
    Dakini Rhode: who would like to eject Storm?

    I chuckled, reading the following few lines, seeing in my mind’s eye the eagerness of Gen and Max to try out their powers on Storm.

    genesis Zhangsun: i can
    Maxine Walden: may I?
    genesis Zhangsun: oh sure
    Maxine Walden: here goes….
    genesis Zhangsun: go ahead Max
    Dakini Rhode: bye Storm
    Maxine Walden: sorry Storm
    Storm Nordwind snivels
    Dakini Rhode: he may look like he’s here for a bit
    Maxine Walden: I pushed the button but he is still here
    Dakini Rhode: Storm please IM me when you’re gone
    Dakini Rhode: there he goes!
    genesis Zhangsun: good job!
    Maxine Walden: did it again and oh, there he goes
    Dakini Rhode: the avatar appears to be here on our screen for awhile, but he’s gone

    Having been catapulted way out, Storm could no longer use the local chat channel, so he used IM to talk with Dakini, who then echoed his words with cut and paste to Genesis and Maxine.

    Dakini Rhode: Storm Nordwind: I’m in the pond in Mieum
    Dakini Rhode: Storm Nordwind: by the bridges
    Maxine Walden: now, can he come back or how does that work?
    genesis Zhangsun: good question
    Dakini Rhode: he can come back
    genesis Zhangsun: once someone is ejected are they banned?
    Dakini Rhode: Hi, Storm - what was that like?
    Maxine Walden: oh, good, Storm, you are back,
    Storm Nordwind: That included being sent 100m in the air
    Dakini Rhode: a little disorienting, but no harm done :-)
    Storm Nordwind: Quite so
    Dakini Rhode: to answer your question genesis,
    Storm Nordwind: But as you see I can still return
    Storm Nordwind: so far
    Dakini Rhode: ejecting is temporary
    genesis Zhangsun: yes i see that now
    Dakini Rhode: If Storm were to return and continue disrupting the session, I would ban him

    At that point I had exited the train at Penn Station and had found a quite place to sit and log in again.

    Pema Pera: haha
    Maxine Walden: Pema, welcome back, looks like the trip through the tunnel led to some changes for you
    Pema Pera: serves him right
    genesis Zhangsun: and how do you ban someone?
    Maxine Walden: yes, I have the chance to eject him…twice…got a little aggression out, tho Storm did not deserve it…still was fun
    Dakini Rhode: I’ll not do that now, but if memory serves me, when you go to eject you have the option to “eject and ban”
    Dakini Rhode: haha Maxine
    Storm Nordwind: yes I believe that is true
    genesis Zhangsun: ah yes i see that now
    Storm Nordwind: Then if I tried to get back on the land…
    Storm Nordwind: I would just see red tape stopping me
    Maxine Walden: WOW, so interesting…
    Dakini Rhode: I would be able to undo that later….

    Storm completed the quick training session that Dakini had started.

    Storm Nordwind: There is a third option that I do not recommend, but you need to know
    Dakini Rhode: I remember I ejected and banned someone who kept putting a cage around me
    genesis Zhangsun: nothing subtle about that
    Dakini Rhode: He begged me to come back, and I said, “maybe tomorrow…: haha
    Storm Nordwind: You will also see the Freeze option
    Maxine Walden: yes,
    Maxine Walden: what does that do
    Storm Nordwind: That does what it says, the avatar becomes frozen
    Storm Nordwind: it cannot move
    Storm Nordwind: but…
    Storm Nordwind: it can still cause harm
    Dakini Rhode: how can it cause harm, Storm?
    Storm Nordwind: It can start throwing cages around for example!
    Storm Nordwind: The user still has keyboard and mouse control
    Dakini Rhode: ah - well, i’ve gotten by with the eject and ban button only
    Storm Nordwind: and they can still run disruptive scripts
    Storm Nordwind: so please do not bother wih Freeze
    Maxine Walden: I think you are describing their rage which may be triggered by the freeze button
    Storm Nordwind: exactly
    Dakini Rhode: sometimes people come here to act out rage and aggression, Maxine
    Dakini Rhode: there are sims for that, this is not one of them
    Maxine Walden: I can believe that, Dakini

    The training was then summarized succinctly by Genesis and Storm.

    genesis Zhangsun: ok so just to sum up we will first eject and then eject and ban if they come back and no freezing
    Storm Nordwind: And prior to that, try talking to them but don’t KEEP trying!
    genesis Zhangsun: righ that is important Storm
    genesis Zhangsun: first try talking before the rest
    Maxine Walden: right

    I realized that the time had come for our regular session.

    Pema Pera: btw, the 1 pm PaB session starts now — perhaps I should sit outside and greet regular visitors there if they come?
    Dakini Rhode: yes!
    Storm Nordwind: good idea
    Maxine Walden: right…
    Dakini Rhode: very good, Pema!
    Dakini Rhode: We’re almost done here.
    Pema Pera: no rush at all!
    Dakini Rhode: I was just going to cover rezzing extra cushions
    Pema Pera: we can then continue in the sunshine ;>)
    Storm Nordwind: I can take people on a tour of the local forest land if you like Pema
    Storm Nordwind: Isen is arriving
    Dakini Rhode: I’ll give you a simple zafu which you can rezz
    Storm Nordwind: I have one anyone can use
    Dakini Rhode: sure, Storm!

    I went outside and greeted Isen.

    Isen Enzo: Pema- you look like me in the 70s!!
    Pema Pera: Isen
    Pema Pera: hi!

    It was a bit of a surrealistic chat at first with Isen, given that the others inside were still well inside texting range.

    Dakini Rhode: you could IM the Guardians and attach the cushion
    Isen Enzo: Hello
    Maxine Walden: oh, great, is that it
    genesis Zhangsun: Hi Isen
    Dakini Rhode: that’s it! you’re prepared to facilitate!
    Pema Pera: how are you?
    Isen Enzo: Fine, and you?
    Dakini Rhode: I should pass out buttons!
    Pema Pera: fine here!
    Pema Pera: lots of talk going on in the tea house ;>)
    Isen Enzo: The rogaine is working, i see…
    Pema Pera: we’re preparing for the next stage of Playing as Being
    genesis Zhangsun: Thankyou for the wonderful introduction Dakini much appreciated
    Isen Enzo: rogaine, rogaine, runnin all round my brain…
    Dakini Rhode: genesis and Maxine, do you know how to rezz the cushion?
    Pema Pera: ah
    Maxine Walden: no, I din’t
    Pema Pera: good old Dylan?
    Maxine Walden: don’t
    Storm Nordwind: Two stages
    Pema Pera: white album?
    genesis Zhangsun: hmmm
    Isen Enzo: Sorry I couldn’t sub for you the other day….
    genesis Zhangsun: trying…
    Isen Enzo: appoligies..
    Storm Nordwind: Go to your inventory and type cushion
    Pema Pera: no problem at all!
    Storm Nordwind: it should highlighted
    Pema Pera: oh, how about tomorrow evening?
    Pema Pera: 7 pm?
    Storm Nordwind: then drag it onto the floor where you want it
    Isen Enzo: Sundays, I reside in RL….
    Pema Pera: ah, okay!
    Dakini Rhode: why don’t you both try that?
    Storm Nordwind: However you may need to rotate it and that might be hard for you if you’ve never done that before

    At that point Isen was called away briefly by RL. The talk inside continued.

    Dakini Rhode: so now I will sit facing the wall…
    genesis Zhangsun: oh hmmmm
    Maxine Walden: oh, it is? what did I do?
    Dakini Rhode: that is easy to fix
    No room to sit here, try another spot.

    Having nothing better to do, I thought I might as well do the tunneling trick, the way you can move through an otherwise solid wall in SL. I had heard about it, but never done it yet.

    The idea is simple: you move your avatar near a wall, and then you move your camera view point through the wall to the other side. You can then click on a place that allows sitting, and voila: next thing you know is that you find yourself at the other side. So it is not really like moving through a wall as more a poor man’s way of teleporting.

    I tried it and indeed, it worked. But because I clicked from the direction in which I was facing from outside the wall, I wound up sitting in a position facing out and away from the center of the room. Dakini of course never missed an opportunity for a jest.

    Dakini Rhode: Pema is facing the corner now
    Dakini Rhode: We need to wear the dunce cap for this :-)
    Maxine Walden: I need to wear the dunce cap. Everyone going out? I will join you

    I then saw Stim rezzing at the other side of the bridge, and I decided to walk over to him, a bit away from the tea house, to separate our own conversation from that of the band of cushioneers inside.

    Pema Pera: Hi Stim!
    genesis Zhangsun: Is the one to the right of me the wrong cushion Storm?
    Stim Morane: Hello
    Dakini Rhode: If it ends up not where you placed it, you can move it
    Pema Pera: Let us walk a bit away, there is a lot of talking going on here
    Pema Pera: follow me please
    Storm Nordwind: gen that is the right cushion but it is facing the door
    Pema Pera: How’s life, Stim?
    Stim Morane: I just thought I’d see what trouble you were getting into

    A for-me new avatar walked up to us in great speed . . .

    Pema Pera: Hi Holly!
    Pema Pera: Greetings

    . . . and went poof in mid air the next moment .. .

    Pema Pera: haha
    Pema Pera: well
    Pema Pera: bought a LOT of land
    Pema Pera: have you been following the blog?
    Stim Morane: Yes I heard about the land. But I’m behind on blog entries
    Pema Pera: me too in writing ;)
    Pema Pera: I now have properties in six sims or so

    Meanwhile Isen had returned from his RL duties, had spotted us at the other side of the bridge, and walked over to join us.

    Pema Pera: Hi Isen, have you met Stim yet?
    Stim Morane: no, Hello Isen
    Isen Enzo: Pleased to meet you Stim…
    Stim Morane: thanks
    Isen Enzo: _/!\_
    Pema Pera: Isen, Stim in RL is my main collaborator in our exploration of reality (^_^)
    Isen Enzo: (can’t gassho from this seated position)
    Isen Enzo: ok
    Isen Enzo: brb

    Another brief interruption for Isen.

    Pema Pera: Stim,
    Stim Morane: oh no, I’m going to have to learn texting abbrevs
    Pema Pera: brb = be right back
    Stim Morane: I see
    Pema Pera: Isen has a bookstore in Alaska
    Pema Pera: he is running it alone
    Pema Pera: when a customer comes, he has to help them
    Isen Enzo: mom and pop…
    Isen Enzo: but mom is not here..
    Pema Pera: it’s a bookstore, right?
    Isen Enzo: yes.
    Pema Pera: that you are running
    Isen Enzo: and internet cafe..
    Isen Enzo: and gallery..
    Pema Pera: wow!
    Isen Enzo: and toy shop..
    Isen Enzo: and art supplies..
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Pema Pera: icecream cone tophats too?
    Isen Enzo: and activewear- patagonia-ish..
    Isen Enzo: local pottery..
    Isen Enzo: hard to do one thing in a small town..
    Isen Enzo: remote..
    Pema Pera: what a fascinating life — no tp?
    Isen Enzo: saddly..
    Pema Pera: haha

    I remembered Isen’s stories about putting together his own robe.

    Pema Pera: how’s your robe coming along?
    Isen Enzo: Apace..
    Isen Enzo: It’s a slow process..
    Isen Enzo: daily..
    Isen Enzo: bit by bit..
    Isen Enzo: “sutra” means “thread”…
    Isen Enzo: learned that…
    Stim Morane: Sorry to change the subject, but I notice laughing in the audio background. Is that a standard feature of the environment?
    Isen Enzo: joins things, binds the fabric together…
    Pema Pera: like suture
    Pema Pera: in English
    Isen Enzo: The laughter is from me…
    Pema Pera: must be the same word
    Pema Pera: in indoeuropean
    Isen Enzo: yes- same root- suture and sutra- exactly..
    Stim Morane: oh, I see. I wasn’t aware these meetings used voice
    Pema Pera: we don’t
    Isen Enzo: there are a few standard voice thingies..
    Isen Enzo: laughter…
    Isen Enzo: Hey!
    Pema Pera: different channel altogether from voice

    Isen showed what sound corresponded with what gesture, and repeated that again.

    Isen Enzo: Hey!
    Pema Pera: same channel as the clicking sound when typing
    Isen Enzo: in with standard gestures..
    Pema Pera: voice channel was added only recently
    Stim Morane: thanks
    Isen Enzo: so- two colaborators…..
    Isen Enzo: and now one…

    Using my camera, I noticed that the others had gathered near the door of the tea house, still inside, but ready to move out.

    Pema Pera: they are about to leave the tea house
    Storm Nordwind: cool
    Storm Nordwind: was that it?

    I had gotten up and had started to walk over, followed by Stim and Isen.

    genesis Zhangsun: out of here!
    Pema Pera: ?

    I was surprised by Gen’s exclamation.

    genesis Zhangsun: we were locked inside
    Storm Nordwind: OK balloon trips this way
    genesis Zhangsun: but Dakini saved us
    Pema Pera: !
    Maxine Walden: going for a balloon ride over your new land
    Pema Pera: haha
    Pema Pera: Maxine first!
    Dakini Rhode: (ahem i also locked you inside)
    Pema Pera: hasn’t seen it yet
    Dakini Rhode: sorry about that!
    genesis Zhangsun: no problem!

    Disentangling the jumble of sentence I figured out what had happened: Dakini had somehow locked the door, and must have had some trouble unlocking it again. Meanwhile we were all walking toward the spot where Storm had parked his balloon, just West of my little hut that stands at the South side of my Rieul based property.

    Pema Pera: Maxine?
    Pema Pera: balloon ride?
    Pema Pera: follow Storm!
    Storm Nordwind: This way
    Pema Pera: to your right
    Maxine Walden: Storm offered a balloon ride

    Dakini refered to how the Guardians would enter their commented logs.

    Dakini Rhode: are we also playingasbeing?
    Pema Pera: sure, why not ;>)
    Dakini Rhode: greetings, Isen and Stim!
    Stim Morane: Greetings!
    Pema Pera: hi wanna see Storm’s balloon?
    Pema Pera: its breathtaking!
    Isen Enzo: Hello Dakini.
    Storm Nordwind shouts: VIA THE PEACE PAGODA

    I smiled seeing Storm like a mother hen gathering all the chicks running hither and thither

    Pema Pera: follow me
    Isen Enzo: Sure..
    genesis Zhangsun: Storm
    Storm Nordwind: We’ve lost Dakini and Maxine

    I pointed at where the two add towers had been, and only one was left standing.

    Pema Pera: isn’t it nice less adds!!!
    Pema Pera: I’m so glad for that good ridance
    genesis Zhangsun: visual pollution
    Pema Pera: hi there!
    Stim Morane: Hi
    Pema Pera: wanna come with us?
    Stim Morane: OK
    Storm Nordwind: The balloon will tell you where we are going
    Storm Nordwind: First two people please get in
    Storm Nordwind: Just Sit
    Storm Nordwind: on the seat!
    Storm Nordwind: Maxine…?
    Maxine Walden: right
    Isen Enzo: looks like room for four…
    Isen Enzo: it’s whispering..
    Isen Enzo: wheee
    Isen Enzo: woo hoo
    genesis Zhangsun: see you later!!
    genesis Zhangsun: have fun!

    Off they went, Isen and Maxine in the first balloon.

    Storm Nordwind: next two please
    Maxine Walden: right
    Dakini Rhode: Go ahead, genesis and Stim!
    Storm Nordwind: Sit on the seat
    Dakini Rhode: can we get 4 in, Storm?
    Dakini Rhode: this is such fun!
    Storm Nordwind: Not at the moment. I have to adjust it
    genesis Zhangsun: Hey Stim nice to share a ride with you

    The second balloon took off with Stim and Genesis, while the first one was gently sailing forth ahead.

    Storm Nordwind: next
    Storm Nordwind: in you go

    Dakini and I were next in line, and took our seat in the third balloon.

    Dakini Rhode: I’ll have to get you champagne - right now i only have manichevitz
    Balloon whispers: Welcome to the Storm’s tour balloon.
    Balloon whispers: This is a tour around Pema’s forest land.
    Balloon whispers: Please remain seated during the tour.
    Balloon whispers: In case of emergency, please follow the safety guidelines.
    Balloon whispers: Please ensure you are sitting comfortably and prepare for launch
    Dakini Rhode gave you Drinkable Mani - GD.

    Behind our balloon I could hear the next balloon, number four, getting ready to take off.

    Balloon whispers: Welcome to the Storm’s tour balloon.
    Balloon whispers: This is a tour around Pema’s forest land.
    Storm Nordwind: Oh you get your own!

    I was wondering to whom Storm was talking. If there was only one person left, why would he then not share the ride with that person? Our own balloon kept up his cheerful chatting.

    Balloon whispers: In the distance to the south you’ll see Dakini’s Tara Ling, a Tibetan Buddhist temple.
    Balloon whispers: And to the north west you’ll see Storm’s holographic Buddha statue.

    At that point, when I came out of mouselook, I realized that Dakini wasn’t there!

    Dakini Rhode: lol i see i took a different balloon!

    This must have happened during the short interval when one balloon takes off and the next one rezzes.

    Balloon whispers: Watch for the mature pink cherry trees. Storm has put some of these at the edges of Pema’s land.
    Balloon whispers: And you’ll see Pema’s original shack down below!

    I decided to stand up, and as I expected, doing so immediately released me from the moving balloon environment, just as I had seen it happening in trolley cars and trains. Unlike those environments, though, there was nothing to hold me up, and I started plunging straight down.
    Out of texting range, Dakini could only reach me by IM.

    IM: Dakini Rhode: hey Pema!

    As soon as I started flying, straight up, by a stroke of luck I emerged close to the next balloon, and after a few desperate attempts at clicking at a seat in Dakini’s swaying balloon, one of the clicks stuck.

    Pema Pera: yeah!
    Dakini Rhode: tadaa!
    Pema Pera: not so easy to get rid of me, hey?
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Balloon whispers: Next we will fly towards and over the Hall of Appearance.
    Balloon whispers: To the east will be Dakini’s Peace Pagoda and, in the distance behind that, the Zen Retreat and its tea house.
    Dakini Rhode: lol - i hope you enjoy your “champagne”
    Pema Pera: sure do!
    Pema Pera: it’s so strong, I lost my hair!!
    Dakini Rhode: this is wonderful - wonderful group!
    Balloon whispers: Beware! We are crossing over a sim boundary!

    Like with a toll gate at a highway, the previous balloon hesitated a bit before crossing from Rieul into Magoja, leading to a bit of a pile up.

    Dakini Rhode: oh yes, I see
    Balloon whispers: This wide open space to the north is all new land to be forested. Storm has put temporary steps down to it.
    Balloon whispers: The area to the east will also be forested at the end of June 2008.
    Balloon whispers: This south east side is the highest part. It will have springs and falls that feed streams flowing through the rest of the forest.

    It is hard for me to describe how touched I felt at all the work and energy and warmth that Storm had put into making the balloon, scripting its journey and putting in this naration, all in a matter of a few days of work . . . . How lucky and blessed I have been with such neighbors like him and Dakini and Isen and Bunan and others.

    Pema Pera: it was as if I could feel the electricity in the room . . . . .
    Dakini Rhode: ooh i tried to pass the mani, but i missed!
    Dakini Rhode: lots of learning going on!
    Dakini Rhode: new land as far as the eye can see!
    Pema Pera: yup!
    Balloon whispers: We could be going much faster, but this speed gives you an idea of the scale of the place.
    Pema Pera: isn’t it something?
    Dakini Rhode: it’s wonderful! I see all sorts of possibilities, very exciting
    Pema Pera: and to see all the other balloons around us!
    Pema Pera: wooaahhh!
    Dakini Rhode: the little fleet of balloons - sweet!

    Indeed, as far as the eye could see, a little flotilla paraded stately in front of us.

    Balloon whispers: Beware! We are crossing over a sim boundary!

    We got into Chokki.

    Balloon whispers: This is a spur of the forest land in another sim.
    Pema Pera: I’m so touched by Storm scripting this . . . . .
    Pema Pera: shockingly so!
    Dakini Rhode: yes, so am I - he has such a good heart
    Pema Pera: yes
    Balloon whispers: Beware! We are crossing over a sim boundary!

    And back into Magoja

    Pema Pera: amazing how many sim boundaries we are crossing!
    Dakini Rhode: do you know Beth Odets?
    Pema Pera: no?
    Dakini Rhode: I’ll have to send her a snapshot of us drinking her manishevitz
    Balloon whispers: Beware! We are crossing over a sim boundary!

    And into Paduk. In the mean time I had recovered my plumage.

    Pema Pera: I like the way my hair waves in the wind
    Dakini Rhode: Beth is a builder in SL, she formerly had a presence in Mieum and Rieul, but has moved on to other things
    Dakini Rhode: your hair is gorgeous!
    Pema Pera: ah
    Pema Pera: thank you ;>)
    Dakini Rhode: electric!
    Balloon whispers: The church we’re passing over is not on Pema’s land. (And it’s not what it at first seems! ;)

    Hahaha, Storm was making a veiled reference to the bondage group gathering there . . .

    Pema Pera: thanks to the lady in between us with the electric wire ;>)
    Pema Pera: got it in her shop

    I was refering to the owner of the sim separating Dakini’s land from mine, the land behind red wires that no one was permitted to cross. It was at her store that I had bought my new hair, mohawk as well as the current long variety.

    Dakini Rhode: great! she was Miss SL 2007, you know :-)
    Pema Pera: haven’t met her in person yet
    Dakini Rhode: Natalia has a very informative blog, great for newbies
    Balloon whispers: But most of this corner will be forested.

    We spoke simultaneously:

    Dakini Rhode: I love Storm’s commentary
    Pema Pera: wow, Storm has done SUCH a detailed job
    Pema Pera: great minds think alike;>)
    Dakini Rhode: :-)
    Dakini Rhode: I’m just impressed how much he’s put in this tour already
    Pema Pera: YES!
    Dakini Rhode: Hey Stim!
    Pema Pera: no half measures for him
    Dakini Rhode: very thorough!
    Storm Nordwind: Stand clear!!!
    Pema Pera: it seems Stim and Gen have fallen out of their gondolas
    Balloon whispers: We hope you enjoyed the trip!
    Pema Pera: below us
    Pema Pera: ah, the end?
    Pema Pera: okay

    We too, fell out of our gondola, when the whole balloon evaporeted at the end of the ride.

    Pema Pera: wasn’t that fun?
    Dakini Rhode: oops i didn’t stand up in time
    Dakini Rhode: Storm, I’m so impressed by the level of detail you’ve already coded into that balloon ride
    Storm Nordwind: Sit on the ground Pema
    Stim Morane: so do you wings “flap” when flying?

    Stim refered to Genesis’ wings

    genesis Zhangsun: nope haven’t become that advanced yet with scripting
    genesis Zhangsun: or rezzing or whatever you call it
    Dakini Rhode: Folks, I didn’t have champagne… so I have you Manichevitz
    Dakini Rhode: gave you
    Pema Pera: Storm, this is so amazing — hard to find words for what’ve done in such a short time!
    Storm Nordwind: It took me about 90 minutes this afternoon Dakini
    Dakini Rhode: Yes, Storm! It’s great and great fun, too!
    Storm Nordwind: No I DON’T have a balloon for the return journey!
    Pema Pera: we’ll have to walk
    Pema Pera: and pretend there is already a path
    Pema Pera: through the woods
    Storm Nordwind shrugs
    Dakini Rhode: is this now the farthest reach of our hippie commune?
    Storm Nordwind: Yes - the cherry tree marks the northern most point
    Storm Nordwind: Unless…
    Storm Nordwind: Pema knows better!
    Dakini Rhode: haha
    Storm Nordwind: He was away for 20 minutes before, so who knows what he as done

    The time had come to say goodbye.

    genesis Zhangsun: I would love to stay but I must go now
    Storm Nordwind: OK gen
    genesis Zhangsun: it has been a pleasure to meet you all
    Stim Morane: Goodbye!
    genesis Zhangsun: I do hope we all meet again in group session
    Dakini Rhode: It was great seeing you again genesis!
    genesis Zhangsun: you too Dakini and thanks again for setting up this training session
    Pema Pera: bye Gen!
    genesis Zhangsun: bye Pema!
    Pema Pera: no new land yet Storm
    Pema Pera: btw
    genesis Zhangsun: Have a wonderful trip to Japan
    Dakini Rhode: np I’ll send the chat blog to Pema so everyone can learn
    Isen Enzo: back
    Pema Pera: thanks Dakini!
    Isen Enzo: How did I get out of the balloon?
    genesis Zhangsun: namaste
    Pema Pera: I have a lot to learn
    Isen Enzo: Thanks Dakini..
    Storm Nordwind: The balloon ejects you when it lands and then it disappears
    Dakini Rhode: i need to leave, too - be well, folks!
    Isen Enzo: Very cool, Storm!!
    Storm Nordwind: You too!
    Stim Morane: bye, Dakini!
    Pema Pera: bye Dakini!
    Storm Nordwind: Namaste
    Isen Enzo: getting busy at the shop…
    Isen Enzo: brb.
    Storm Nordwind: I need to go too
    Maxine Walden: I am back, sorry,
    Pema Pera: bye everyone!
    Storm Nordwind: I haven’t eaten for 8 hours
    Stim Morane: bye, Storm!
    Maxine Walden: Storm, go get food

    Before taking off, I briefly showed Storm my new property to the West.

    Pema Pera: this is 10k
    Pema Pera: have you seen this?
    Pema Pera: I think I’ll snatch some part of Nieun now
    Pema Pera: don’t you think it was a palpably electrifying meeting ?!?
    Storm Nordwind: yes I could feel the sparks!
    Storm Nordwind: There’s “immersive” for you
    Pema Pera: yessir!!
    Storm Nordwind: bfn!
    Pema Pera: k
    Storm Nordwind grins broadly
    Pema Pera: c u

    After Storm had left, I flew straight West to Solbim, even further West than where I had bought some 10k sq.m. the day before. I talked with the owner, and we came to an agreement for a reasonable price, for an area of about 8k sq.m, about 1/8 of a full sim. I saw the stepping stones being laid on toward the sea coast . . .

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