Thursday, August 3, 2017

California Dreamin’ in Second Life

California, still a magical vanity fair. 

Eileen Granfors

A call from my old Second Life (SL) friend, Perryn Peterson is always a happy moment for me!

(BTW When I say “old,” I don’t mean chronologically.  Despite recently celebrating his eleventh rez day inworld, Perryn still speaks with the joy and wonder of youth!)

Usually, these unannounced summons from Perryn signal something new and different inworld at Mieville.

This time is no different!

Perryn told me about the latest extravaganza planned for Mieville, California Dreamin’!

This is a look back to how California was back in the day in the Fifties and Sixties as Hollywood’s Golden Age was ending but before the gods of Silicon Valley had arisen.

Miss Mattie Puss ran the build and oversaw the project with Perryn adding several personal touches. What they’ve done is to give us a wonderful look back at a California that is receding into memory or at least as much as can be squeezed into a sim!

Let’s take a look!

Rezzing into California Dreamin’ one arrives in a bus station evocative of a time gone by.  An old style Coke vending machine, a cigarette dispenser, and period lighting fixtures
contribute to the feeling.  And, why shouldn’t the visit begin in a bus station?  After all, so many hopefuls and wannabes arrived via bus back in the day. 

Walking outside, one can almost feel the beautiful California climate.  (As I write this, I’m sweltering through a Real Life (RL) heat wave.  Significant Other suggests we visit California soon.  Just, not by bus.)  A large cruising bus waits outside for the passengers who will never arrive.  It sits there reminding us of what once was.  (Significant Other asks if I can be more upbeat in this story.) 

Strolling  up the street, a visitor finds themselves in Hollywood.  The big sign looming overhead on the hillside is the first clue.  Another clue is the Walk of Fame at the visitor’s feet.  Looking closely, one will see the names of famous Mievillians instead of RL actors and
actresses. (This is SL after all!) 

Other semantic sleight of hand transforms Olvera Street into LOLvera Street.  (When in Rome…)  Miss CaraCali of Botanica has set up this marvelous area. 

A little bit further along the street and we’re in San Francisco!

(Another one of the advantages of SL!  Makes Star Trek’s teleporter almost look passe!)

One strolls among the hills, seeing Painted Ladies, cable cars, and Chinatown. Coit Tower looms in the distance. 

Continuing along, one comes to the Big Sur.  Maybe not quite as breathtaking as in RL but still impressive for SL!  The requisite drive-ins are nearby.  The stroll then takes one to the Boardwalk with its rides, arcades, and merchants.  (Purists may gripe that this Boardwalk is not exactly over the water but compromises are necessary inworld.  Quit complaining and enjoy your cotton candy!)

Also, on the beaches, the sand sculptures of Ktahdn Vesuvino can be seen.  He builds sand sculptures in RL (He actually lives in LA!) and takes pictures of them and other beachy things turning them into live action works of art inworld. 

Along the way, the farms that feed America can be visited in all their ready to harvest splendor. 

And, what recreation of California would be complete without a redwoods forest?  Perryn has added one and it’s inspiring.  Reminding one of these majestic trees, many of which have been alive in RL since before Europeans arrived on the continent.  (One might
say that they are alive despite the arrival of the Europeans!  Before anyone complains, I’m of direct European descent myself so I can make the jokes!)
The hippie encampment is a touch added by Miss Mattie.  Check the attention to detail! 

For the fans of Perryn and his gang who are worried about where all the usual attractions of a Mieville event are, not to worry!  They’re there!

Merchants with fantastic products, gachas, and entertainments are everywhere in California Dreamin’!

Would Perryn ever disappoint?


Of course, despite the team’s best efforts, not every aspect of California’s Golden Age could be squeezed in.  Unfortunately, they had to leave out San Diego, its world famous zoo, or Balboa Park. As Perryn said to me, “Well, it's a big state.” 

(Maybe if Perryn gets enough requests there could be a California Dreamin’ II sometime soon.  After all, California is the home of sequels!) 

California Dreamin’ captures the feel of a California that is long gone by for many of
us.  Perryn and his merry band made clever use of the sim to show depth and distance.  Too many other sims are just flat squares.  This is without a doubt one of Mieville’s finest achievements and is well worth visiting! 

California Dreamin” runs from August 5th to August 20th and can be located here. 

I’d like to thank Perryn Peterson for giving a tour of California Dreamin’ as it was being readied. 

I’d also like to thank him and Miss Mattie Puss for their efforts in creating this superb memorial to an important part of our history and culture!

See you in LA! 

Additional pictures from my visit can be found on this flickr page. 

As always, I’m grateful to all inworld for their kindness and time in stopping to talk with a stranger who was passing through their lives. 

My Twitter handle is @webspelunker.  Please feel free to follow me and I’d be happy to follow you.

I can be found on Google+ as webspelunker Ghostraven.

My flickr Photostream is located here.

On Skype I’m webspelunker Ghostraven.

I welcome feedback from readers, please either comment on my blog or e-mail me at . 

            If you would like to read about my other adventures in Second Life
 please click here.

            Open roads and kind fires!

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