Posts Tagged 'Shenlei'

There’s Still Time

dales pic of shens plaqueI missed SL10B. 😦 But I hear that the sims are still up. Which is a good thing. Because even though I missed SL, apparently someone in SL was thinking of ME. I see from Dale that Shenlei has a display. 🙂 Thank you Shen!! You were, are and will be one of my favorites in SL! And thank YOU, Dale – *grin* – stole your picture.
You know what? Tomorrow will be AH5B. Almost forgot entirely.

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New Horizons: Shengri La Chamomile

The Saltwater House
You know I adore my friend Shenlei. She is a dynamo, never relaxing, never stopping, one brilliant creation after another. If I want to get to have playtime with her anymore, I practically have to kidnap her. *grin* I think I need to drop another “time-to-play-and-laugh-for-30-minutes” present on you, Shen. When last we saw our heroine – she’d just published a book. Okay, she topped that. She built 4 regions in Opensim. Yep. Four. Gorgeous, prim-full regions. /me grins happily. I have been there twice already, visiting, seeing the sights.

Resting on the deckFashion Research Institute, Inc. and Intel Labs announced their new research collaboration whose focus is exciting, quality content and optimized performance of the OpenSim platform which, together, will provide for an enhanced user experience. Maybe you don’t know how truly exciting this is. Maybe you don’t play in virtual worlds. Maybe you only play in SL. But as one who has been working in Opensim for the last several months – believe me. This is MAJOR. The efforts being made on Science Sim for both content and performance are huge. You know I am not a techie, I’m not really anyone who “knows” much. I am your typical end user. So what I say reflects the masses, not the cognoscenti. These sims are stunningly beautiful. Fascinating to visit. I think that we are looking at another major step in OS’s rise to fame and glory. *grin* Okay – maybe that was over the top. But since I am NOT technical, I do fall back on my liberal arts upbringing.

Quoting from Shenlei’s blog:
This collaboration is currently scheduled to run for a year, during which time FRI will provide increasingly complex, highly detailed, large scale (beautiful) designs which will be showcased in Science Sim with hosting and hardware provided by Intel Corporation.

We think it is important to have active human agency providing feedback to the technologists about the quality of the user experience. As fashion designers from the apparel industry, we think function should also be delivered with flair, and dare we say it, fashionably. With that in mind, we have begun developing the new Shengri La regions on Science Sim: Shengri La Chamomile, Shengri La Sage, Shengri La Thyme, and Shengri La Rosemary.

Sailing the Waters of ChamomileThere is a wonderful video on the front page of the FRI blog. It highlights the Chamomile region. The hauntingly beautiful music is by Kyle Bronsdon (who you may know as Kyle Beltran), and was composed specifically in honor of Shenlei and Shengri La.

The Horses of the GalleryAt the moment there are sailboats and gardens and landscaping and the stupendous Saltwater House. Also there or coming shortly are works by the FRI interns (hey – they are doing a fashion show in SL in 2 weeks – *grin* you know *I* will be there) and interactive butterfly displays and much more. There is also an art gallery coming, but I’m not allowed to say anything more about that. (Contact me in world – I can be bribed. *grin*) I snuck over and could not resist taking this picture of the grounds about the building. Opensim can be a beautiful space.

4 Jermyn Place, Victoriana

4-jermyn-street1While some of us (that would be me) have done nothing productive for the last week or so, some people (that would be Shenlei) have been working. She is either the most productive person I know or the least productive person I know because she is ALWAYS working. welcome-to-victoriana 🙂 Teasing – I know she always has several ongoing projects, ranging all over the world. And STILL finds time to get to Rez day parties. (Hey – *I* made the rez day parties TOO! Hmmm, but I missed the “work” part of the week.) So while I was busy being the grasshopper and making music, Shen was setting up her newest Debutante location – 4 Jermyn Place in Victoriana Harbour.

shenleis-orangeryNow I know that Shenlei has always had an interest in the period sims but I never quite understood the fascination. Of course, I’d never been to one, so I wasn’t evaluating from much data. So when Shen invited me to come see her new store in Victoriana Harbour I decided it was time. We talked shop for a bit (and I picked up a strand of pearls) and then Shen took me on a tour of Victoriana Harbour and Lakeside (where she already has an Orangery). Strolling between the two properties was simply lovely. even-the-manhole-covers-are-beautiful The Victorian theme is so well done and so complete. I was, of course, dressed completely inappropriately theme-wise, but I had finally picked up a winter jacket so I wasn’t too chilled as we strolled through the sims. The Orangery is a wonderful peaceful spot. I wanted to settle in for tea and cookies and watch the snow fall.

the-carouselI walked Shen back to the store and she pointed me on the path to the Carnivale. I strolled through the center of town, passed the railroad tracks, on my way to the Lake and the Carnivale. Along the way I admired the scenery and the buildings. Even the manhole covers are beautiful in Victoriana. I found the Carnivale with no trouble (obviously a tourist-friendly town).

i-love-a-carouselThere was a carousel. I LOVE carousels. I smile writing the word. So of course I had to jump on and start the ride. It was great. 🙂 Went ’round and ’round, faster and faster! Played music and everything.

After a time, even I tired of the carousel. you-cant-miss-the-ferris-wheelI got off and went roaming about the Carnivale. It was a bit lonely there, in the midst of a winter evening but still interesting. There were concession stands and booths. I did see someone else flit by me but we didn’t chat. Despite how impressive it looked – tall and stark in the falling snow – I decided to pass on the ferris wheel (next time for sure).

all-aboardI wandered into a tent that turned out to be a drinking hall with bear musicians who played polkas. 🙂 Also next time. I decided it was time to head back to town so I went and waited for the train. The train took me through the snowy countryside, making appropriate train sounds the entire way. It stopped at the town square station and I disembarked.

Across from the Welcome now-for-the-sleigh-ride Center in the town square there is a horse-drawn sleigh, which tours through Victoriana. It is charming, wonderful, delightful, fun. A brilliant concept. Although the pose ball appears to be made for two, I had no problem managing the horse and sleigh on my own.

dashing-through-the-snowWe went through Harbour and Lakeside, up hill and under bridges, past the lake, crossing the railroad tracks. I saw the fishing hole and Tinytoriana. The tour gives a wonderful view of the houses, shops, roads, bridges and scenery. I snapped dozens of pictures because each new turn was prettier than the last. As usual, I have uploaded the entire Victoriana stream to my Flickr account.

The sleigh ride ends at the church, the-ride-ends-by-the-churchwhich is just a few steps to Debutante. So I strolled back to 4 Jermyn and thanked Shenlei for yet another wonderful SL adventure. It’s good to have friends. And I think I must have the best friends an SL gal can have.

Housing Disaster

Oh dear. Just when I think I know what I’m doing, I do something amazingly stupid. 😦 Did you know that textures need to be rezzed onto a prim? Maybe I knew that, but maybe I didn’t. I have several photos that are defined as textures in my inventory and I open them up just as if they were photos. So until Sunday morning, I never really paid attention to the differences. Oops……

Saturday night I went to an art show opening. Callipygian Christensen, Sysperia Poppy and Trindolyn Beck are showing their work at Chosen Misery. Calli had shown me some of the current pieces a few weeks ago. I’d fallen in love with one of them. I didn’t know that I’d fallen in love until I realized that I couldn’t stop thinking about the face and the lighting and the mood. So I told Calli that I thought I was in love and wanted to see the picture again. Sure enough, when I saw it Saturday night, I was still in love. So I bought it. My first artwork for my beautiful new house. No – I’m NOT posting a picture. If you want to see it, you have to come visit me. 🙂 I also fell in love with a photo by Sysperia. In for a penny, in for a pound – I bought that one also.

Sunday morning I decided to hang my new artwork. I was quite excited to put them up on the walls, see where they would look best, how to size them for best viewing. I started with Calli’s. I rezzed it, sized it, put it on the wall next to the fireplace. It looked wonderful – just as I’d been imaging it all these weeks. So without thinking much about anything, I rezzed Sysp’s texture, to hang on the wall. Oh dear. It was a texture, not a texture on a prim. It GLOMMED onto the wall of the house. Full size – covering the wall upstairs and down. Okay, no big deal, I thought. I’ll just take it back and start again. Except……. It’s like this, for you RL friends…. the texture becomes part of the wall. Not only that, but this particular texture – it’s “no-copy”. That means I can use it only once. So….. my wall now had this picture all over it instead of being wall texture, and I couldn’t re-rez the texture onto a prim to hang because it was already in use. So I’d damaged both the wall and the texture.

And then it got worse…. As I said, I figured I’d fix everything by “taking” the texture back. So I did. But I “took” the wall. That is, I “took” my house. Suddenly I was up in the air with no house. I was falling. I looked at my bare empty land with my furniture floating 3 stories up, and my pool where it should be and my heart stopped. Oh My Word. I destroyed my house. I didn’t put it in place – Rez and Shenlei did that for me!!!!! Oh my. Oh no. Having RL pains in my chest, can’t breathe. My house…. Frantically I look at my friends list. No Shenlei. Bailey!!! Bailey is on!!!! I IM Bailey, hysterical. Bailey tells me to start breathing again and she tp’s in to my rescue.

I give Bailey all rights to my inventory, I rez my house again (floating detached from the pool now) and stand back to watch. Bailey nudges and tugs that house right back into alignment – perfectly!!! I don’t even have to fix the furniture or the flowers or anything!!!! My house is BACK!!!! She made it look so easy. I think she accomplished the whole process in less than 10 minutes. I think it took her longer to stop my hysteria than it took her to move the house into place. 🙂 The wall was still textured with “Still Waters” (the Sysperia Poppy work), but Bailey needed to get back to work. I did not have the texture for the walls, so Bailey suggested that I contact both the architect who built the house and Sysperia, to ask for the textures. So I sent off notecards to both.

As I caught my breath and settled in to wait for replies, Shenlei logged in. I IM’d her to tell her of myenjoying-my-restored-walls-and-art latest fiasco. 🙂 Shen, like Bailey, immediately jumped to help, despite being up to her chin in her own work. She tp’d over. She has a house similar to mine and she gave me her wall texture. Then she began to teach me how to retrieve that texture out of the wall. The woman has the patience of a saint. LOL. I’m sure there is something ironic in that sentence, but you KNOW that I adore you, Shen. 🙂 Anyway, I was still being incredibly stupid (maybe I shouldn’t attempt SL until AFTER I drink my coffee??) and we must have gone through the same set of instructions five times before I understood how to get it right. Bingo! THERE was that texture within the content of the wall prim! I dragged it from there back into my inventory. YAY!!!! Shenlei trusted me to fix the wall texture and rez “Still Waters” correctly at that point and so returned home. I did indeed apply her wall texture successfully and it was a fairly close match. Not exact. But at that moment the architect IM’d me and sent me the correct texture. 🙂 YAY!!! My house was in place and textured properly!!!!! Next I rezzed a prim, textured it with “Still Waters” and hung it above my bed. It looks fantastic!! And while I was doing that, Sysp came online and IM’d me to help out. She too was very kind and comforting, saying (as did all the others) that everyone makes mistakes like this on occasion.

Everyone was wonderfully helpful, kind and supportive. Each one of them took time from their busy lives IMMEDIATELY upon hearing of my distress. I am always so touched by the kindness and generosity of the people that I meet in SL. I know that some people blog about rudeness and incivility. I have been extremely fortunate in the people that I know and meet.

So….. it seems to me that I need to repay the generosity and kindness of my friends. Some big, dramatic, tell-the-world gesture. I don’t think that simply giving an object as a gift will suffice. I think that something more personal may be required. I am thinking over how best to implement my idea…….

Lucky Stumps, Bubble Chairs

I don’t know how to classify this post. This COULD be classified as another “Ahuva threw herself under a bus”. It could go under “Strong Contender for laughing the most in SL”. Or “My Friends are Wonderful”. “Shopping Do’s and Don’ts”. 🙂 Of course – it is ALL of those things. I threw myself into the exuberance and energy that is Shenlei Flasheart and laughed for three hours straight.

I’ve never gone Lucky Chair hunting. I belong to a group that sends out Lucky Chair alerts but I’veshenlei-on-the-rocking-horse never responded. I sat in a Lucky Chair twice at an NCI party. But I’ve always felt somewhat skeptical? scornful? too lazy? to join in the pursuit of a Lucky Chair calling for an “A”. It always seemed like way more effort than it would be worth. Until, that is, I saw Shenlei’s new bubble chairs. 🙂 The truth is – Shen makes EVERYTHING seem brighter and more exciting and more alive than probably any three other people put together. Certainly I enjoy our serious talks, but when she is in a mood to play, my face hurts from smiling so much. We were hanging out chatting during the Ode Butterfly hunt this month and she mentioned that she’d been staking out a Lucky Chair the previous evening. She’d fallen in love with Chestnut’s chairs (hmmm, so this is really all Ches’ fault!!!) Shen rezzed the prize for me – 6 bubble chairs, each with its own script. They were definitely adorable. And as we sat there on our bubbles chatting, she told me of the madness I had missed in the amassing of this marvel. It began sometime around the time carriages turn back into pumpkins and continued until the wee hours of the morning. She had friends tp’ing in from all over SL, sitting on the Lucky Chairs, in an attempt to get the chairs to call out an S. 🙂 Shen can be fairly persistent AND forceful. By the time she got to the part where she had a friend come tp’ing in naked, I was already laughing out loud and regretting that I’d missed the party.

Here comes the “under the bus part”. Actually, Shenlei and I differ in our recollection of this discussion. SHE claims that I said that if we staked out these Lucky Chairs and I got a set of bubble chairs, that I would, well, never mind what exactly, because if it comes to pass, I will blog it. (I have a plane ticket standing by so that I can leave the country should it ever come to pass. 🙂 ) Now *I* say that is NOT how the deal went. *I* insist that I held out for a much more rare and intriguing prize. And Shen did NOT deliver that prize. 🙂 However…… the terms of this Ladies Agreement are neither here nor there. The result was that we agreed to meet again to stake out the Lucky Chairs and win me a set of bubble chairs!!!!

The other evening the ping came in…. “tonight’s the night…. meet me at Happy Mood and we will lucky-stump-if-your-name-starts-with-qmake those chairs sing A “. My SL friends know how Lucky Chairs work. But here’s a primer for my RL friends. In order to draw traffic to the store, merchants will have a Lucky Chair in their store that gives away a free gift. Every few minutes the chair will call out a letter. If your first name begins with that letter and you sit in the chair first, you get the prize. If someone sits in the chair and wins the prize, the chair calls another letter. If no one sits in the chair, after a set period of time, the chair will call a different letter. If you try to sit in the chair and you are NOT the correct letter, it kicks you out. 🙂 Lucky chairs, despite claims to the contrary, are OBVIOUSLY sentient, evil, malicious and and all-around hateful. They KNOW what your letter is and that you WANT their prize and they DON’T CALL YOUR LETTER. These bubble chairs can ONLY be obtained through the Lucky Chairs, you cannot buy them. So you have to hope the chair calls your letter if you want bubble chairs. 🙂

First, the lucky chairs in Happy Mood are actually tree stumps. That makes no difference to how it works, but it does explain the picture. Second, there are two lucky stumps. Third, this is one of those things that if you are not doing it, you think, “that’s not so funny” but when you are participating, you get caught up in the frenzy and the hysteria. Think mob psychology. 🙂 Since I always tell you the truth (okay, not really, but mostly) I will confess that I was EXTREMELY apprehensive about this venture. I don’t have that many people on my friends list. Of course “that many” is relative. Maybe I do. But I don’t think so. And many of them are from work. I was afraid that I would not be able to keep up my end of tp’ing in friends to trigger the stumps. Since these chairs were to be for me, I didn’t want to be imposing on Shenlei’s friends (okay, we share some friends, but I’m willing to bet that her list is much more extensive than mine). But I joined Shen in Happy Mood and the madness began.

We were the only ones in the grove. The chairs were calling D and E. Sounds easy, no? No. As I fumbled through my friends list the D changed to an S! Yay! Shen sat down! And from that point on it got increasingly crazy. We had a run of Zs. Js. W. K. For ‘K’ I brought in a D friend and he brought a K friend. 🙂 I had both H and C on call waiting. 🙂 Theoretically Shen and I were positioned RIGHT IN FRONT of the stump. But of course I would be tp’ing in folks for Shen’s tree and she was bringing in folks for mine, and there were more tree stumps that weren’t lucky chairs and there was a lot of lag. Shen and I were calling “come sit on my stump” and people were rezzing in waiting-waiting-waiting-for-an-msaying “I can’t see anything” and other people were hanging about commenting on the farce. 🙂 There is actually a lovely store at Happy Mood. I wouldn’t know. I never raised my eyes from the tree stumps and my friends list and my chat boxes. 🙂 At least 3 of our friends/observers remarked that we could MAKE our own bubble chairs faster than we could win one. Yeah, but that’s no fun. I remember being a little girl at the carnival and wanting my father to win me a stuffed animal. He told me that was a waste of money, that he would buy me one when we got home. And he DID, but it wasn’t the same. 😦 (I’m so spoiled now – I have someone in RL who wins me stuffed animals down the shore every summer!!!)

And so we IM’d and pinged and begged and cajoled and pleaded and laughed and laughed and laughed. I talked to people I have not talked to since I friended them. I talked with coworkers and friends. Many of my friends are now wealthier by a set of bubble chairs. We had such a run of Ks and Qs and Xs. Can you believe that we got stuck on B??? Neither of us had a B online. At one point BOTH chairs were looking for a B. And my former friend T – hmmph!!!! Purple pretender!!!!! NEVER winning-the-chairscame and sat on a stump for me to reset the letter. We had a slow period full of X and K and Z. 7 minutes between letters. Hell had stuck around after winning his set, so he helped amuse us and pass the time. Then we had a run of S. Of course, when Shen was stalking for HER chairs, all SHE got was A. Proof positive that the chairs are malicious. One of the most frustrating moments was when Issa rezzed in for her I, but couldn’t find the right stump (too much lag). By the time she got there, the letter had changed. But of course – now she was hooked. 🙂 I IM’d to some people that I had to think twice before hitting the send. Only 3 people turned me down, and they were all very, very nice about it (except the purple pretender 😛 ). I called some scary people too, and they came as well. Perhaps the scariest call I made, and the one I may regret the most, was my call to my vampire friend. Gulp. I may indeed owe him. eek. But he too was an incredibly good sport and got into the spirit of things. And, of course, walked off with a set of bubble chairs. 🙂 FINALLY!!!! TWO HOURS into the adventure, an A was called!!! VICTORY!!!!

We were set to head out and shop when we realized that Issa still needed her chairs. So we stayed put and continued tp’ing people in left and right. About 30 minutes after my A, Issa got her I. But by issa-on-her-bubble-chairthat time M had come in and wanted HER set. So we stayed. 🙂 Life got crazier and crazier as more people stayed. Lack of sleep is an amazing factor. 🙂 We had a child av with us also, tripping the chairs each time an E came up. She was truly amazing. She was totally a child – never broke character. One of our friends was wearing some space-age boots. E asked if the friend was a robot. For some reason – that seemed to be the straw that broke the sanity camel’s back. People started changing avs, mutating into more sci-fi shapes or fantasy shapes. I was completely immersed by that point – sure that E was a kid, wondering if I was in a Grade B movie and was going to be captured by the mechanical bug-thing, laughing my head off saviouras the centaur kicked up dust clouds and watching E defend us all w/ a huge hammer. M declared that she was throwing in the towel for the evening – we would have to stalk bubble chairs on her behalf another evening. That was the signal for most of us to realize how late it was, and to head off to other adventures.

I have TWO sets of bubble chairs. I have the most fantastic memories. I had an amazingly fabulous time. Without doubt I have the most wonderful, fun friends a person could have – the cavalry riding to the rescue time after time. And Shenlei – thank you!!!! This may even top the night you rezzed a horse for me and I rode all through Shengri La. As I wrote this post, I laughed and laughed again. Thanks for sharing your joy in life!

Little Tiny Fingers

Shenlei Flasheart has posted one of the most moving and enlightening entries I have seen in a blog. I do like flash and glitter and beads and sequins. I had no idea the price that is paid to produce such items. Should I be indulging in such clothing now, I will make very sure that I know exactly how it was produced. As Michele Hyacinth has said – the process is often the exact opposite of the beautiful end result.

So Now What do I Do???

So the conference is over. The all-consuming all-out effort of preparing and attending – it’s done. Suddenly I have all this time. I don’t remember what I used to do. I feel somewhat bereft, to tell the truth. What do I do now that I am not searching the world high and low for trees? What do I do now that I am not endlessly planting. And ripping out my plants. Will I ever see my ducks again???? Looking on the bright side, however, I added several friends to my contacts list. I hope I get to see them again now that the conference is over. It will be fun to see other parts of the world and meet new people.

Speaking of which…. I’ve followed my friend Bailey to her pub, the Crown and Pearl. What a blast! I have taken to going there after work to unwind and have fun. The conversation ranges from light-hearted to serious. You can tell that these are good friends who enjoy hanging out together, teasing each other, supporting each other. The music is good, the DJ’ing superb and I always come away in good spirit. And they throw fun parties as well. Had just finished listening to Noma live when a group chat opened up. Lingerie party in progress. It did take me awhile to believe that they were all in lingerie. You have to understand – I don’t know them all that well, but I know enough to realize that they would definitely tease by all being there completely dressed and convincing me to tp there in my undies. 🙂 But after being reassured by a trustworthy group member, I changed my clothes and joined the party. Definitely lingerie. 🙂 Amazing how far you can get with a well placed sock. 🙂

And I have my first friends also. After the lingerie party I ended up back at Shengri La. Shenlei and Michele were modelling some beautiful new outfits available at the Vintage Marketplace. Then Calli tp’d in, fresh from the honor of being inducted into the SL Photography Hall of Fame! Way to go, Calli!!!! Shen modeled another outfit for us all. It really was simply beyond words. So I am relying on Calli’s photography to show you what I can not describe. 🙂 You have to click this to see it at full size. You must!!!

So here I am. Another chapter finished, time to move on. Maybe I’ll even remember what it is to sleep. 🙂 Because it IS after 2am. Oh wait! Forget sleep…. I see a new friend has just logged on. /me waves – Hi T!


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