January 7th, 2010 by Marianne McCann
While at Michael Linden’s office hour this week, I got what was for me some exciting news: the Wild West Town in Oak Grove would finally be seeing some love.
In the dim and distant past, the Oak Grove sim was the home of wild West Town, a resident build project from 2003, once housed in the Zoe sim. Then things changed. The Native American village was replaced with the Oak Grove Education Stage, and the entrance to Wild West Town was nearly buried as land was raised for Busy Ben’s Vehicle Lot. The Oak Grove telehub went away, and Wild West Town slowly began to fall apart. Two structures are all but gone, leaving just a jumble of prims.
It was Oak Grove, the damage to same, and the lack of upkeep to the area that led me to file a JIRA and a support ticket back in Spring of 2008. It also led me to seek out other locations that were in need of retails, such as Yamato Town, Mount G’Al, the Moth Lamps in Iris, and the “Games” Pavilion in Ahern. Some of these have been fixed, some remain in need.
Seeking out those locations led to something else, too: it helped opened up this world to me. It made me think of it as something more than a collection of parcels to be teleported to. I had already been reaching that with my experiences in Bay City, but once I began to see that beyond Bay City was Nova Albion, and the Suburbs, then Yamato, Nexus Prime, Ahern, and Oak Grove, then Lusk, the vehicle sims, and the Lost Forest of Kahruvel — well, you get the idea. I begun to see all these as somehow connected.
Then I looked at the SL Roads, waterways, and rails, further connecting places. I rode the train from Tuliptree to Bhaga, and when it came time to move from South Islandia to Shermerville, me, my siblings, and an aunty or two took a drive ‘cross the whole of the Sansara continent, passing Resident and Linden locations I’d previously only visited via teleports.
So often, we hear people talk about how little there is to do in SL. Reporters will write silly articles, bloggers toss their snark, and everyone sharpens their knives on Second Life. Plenty of Residents, often huddled in the crowd at an infohub, will also tell you about how bored they are in their Second Life experience.
Yet there is always something out there to see. For me, there is quite literally more than I could ever hope to soak in. I’ve travelled every road and rail line (including the unbuilt right of ways), and sailed between continents and across the Blake Sea. I know the Mainland better than most, no question, and can rattle off long discussions about what is — and was — in a lot of these many regions.
Yet in knowing and doing all this, I can only tell you that there is a lot more out there I don’t know and have not seen. There will always be places to see, things to do, and new experiences to have. There are nine continents, three major cities, and then thousands of privately held island estates to boot. On top of this, things change with a regularity quite unlike the real world. There is simply no way to keep up on it all.
And this is good.
As I write this, I’m boarding the new Blake Sea ferry in Barbarossa, while a B-17 and an F-16 fly overhead. How wonderous a world is this? There are a bit over 40,000 people inworld, each doing their own part to make this world unique and special.
Before you started reading this blog entry, you may never have heard of Wild West Town of some of these other locations. Maybe you are now intrigued enough to do some exploring on your own. Please do. In fact, if you are interested, come by my store in Bay City – Imaginario and click the billboard above the parking lot, or come to Miramare Place and click the Exploration wall. You’ll get a stack of Landmarks to some of these places, ripe for exploration. Go, have fun, and learn how vast this word of ours really is.