Strength in Friendship

Throughout life, we are presented with hurdles. It is up to us to decide whether to scale, circumvent or be blocked by these hurdles. I must admit that I have been guilty of allowing myself to be blocked by various hurdles. Two common phrases within my repertoire were “I can’t” and “The problem is,” but I’ve gradually allowed myself to believe that if something can be done, I can do it. If I don’t try, I won’t succeed.

Not everything makes sense to do. For example, if my car needs new tires, I shan’t mold them myself, but rather I’ll purchase them. When I decide to build a home, I’ll use an architect for the drawings after I rough-sketch what I want. If I want to build a scripted object to make my second life a little easier, I shall do so, and do so I have.

When I started Second Life, I was a bit lost. It is vast. Without traversing the map, one cannot truly understand just how vast. Every day I find something new, often right in my own back yard. It is an amazingly dynamic world where expressions of ones personality shine through in myriad ways. Creativity abounds seemingly to no limit.

To understand of which I speak, take a stroll through the many connected sims that comprise the Independent State of Caledon. This virtual nation, the brainchild of Mr. Desmond Shang, is continually growing and is a splendid display of imagination, creativity and talent of all of its residents. Home to inventors, builders, artists and all others, this Victorian society is warm, welcoming and encouraging. Everyone that I have been so lucky to meet has allowed me to feel at home. Oh what wonders would abound should the rest of the world (both RL and SL) be so.

To say I am proud to be a part of Caledon would be an understatement. Since my arrival and prior to my homesteading, I have found the people of Caledon to be an inspiration to me. The architecture, though true to a Victorian or Steampunk theme, shows significant variety and allows the personality of the creator to shine through.

I’ve always loved old things. I’m a lover of old books and old tools (donations are always welcome) as I feel they have a soul that modern objects do not. In this age of computers, electronics and technology, the simplicity of old books and tools warms my heart. I’ve heard people refer to it as junk, but as long as I live, I will always afford them a home. I do have computers and power tools, but to hold a two hundred year old book in ones hands or to work a piece of wood with an old plane brings one closer to ones inner self.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a passion for photography. To hold a camera in my hands, find a subject and acquire an image are both relaxing and invigorating. To develop the film and make a print using chemicals and paper is both aggravating and exciting. Oddly, though I’ve worked with computers for as long as I’ve dabbled in photography (nearly 30 years), neither has entrenched upon the other’s territory. I only have a cheap 3 megapixel digital camera. It works and takes remarkably clear travel photos. I’ve been a stalwart holdout against purchasing a real digital camera. With encouragement from a friend, I feel the time has arrived to enter the digital age.

Last night, while I should have been doing homework for an RL class, I was finishing some loose ends on a couple projects. With the help of my friend Lapin Paris, I now know that my on-line indicator works. In front of my shop in SteamSkyCity, I have a placard that indicates my presence in-world by changing its texture. Of course, I could not check to see if it worked since I needed to be on-line to see. Lapin has confirmed that it indeed works! Woot!

A simple hurdle and one easily scaled, but it takes friendship to do so. We seldom take time to reflect upon our friendships, but rather we take them for granted. Our friends are our greatest resource, as they bring joy and a sense of belonging that we could never experience alone. They give us strength and encouragement. They help us to scale our hurdles. To all those that have allowed me to be me, who have accepted me as I am and who have encouraged me to be better than I thought possible, I thank you. You are my strength and I just hope that I can return that strength in kind.

I remain gratefully yours,



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