Jan 12, 2011

Embarking on a Sentimental Journey

Winter, a lingering season, is a time to gather golden moments,
embark upon a sentimental journey, and enjoy every idle hour.

John Boswell


Five Snowflake Balls have now taken place in the Steamlands.


Each year I wonder at the special nature of this event. There truly seems to be some magic surrounding the annual formal winter event.  Somehow the Snowflake brings out the best in us all.  Somehow we are all brought together, despite lag, despite dance machines maxing out, despite any drama or disagreement, and despite some lethargy about this vitual world we live in.

The first Snowflake Ball was part of the first Social Season in Caledon back in January 2007.  The first Duchess Loch Avie, Shenlei Flasheart hosted it in the relatively new sim, and Gabrielle Riel was the musical director.  Caledon was growing and people were stretching their role playing legs.  Things were very proper and congenial.  The dance was incredibly fun as neighbors and friends came together in their winter best.  New friends were welcomed into the community, and we all left the night feeling so good about Caledon and her citizenry.

I became the Duchess of Loch Avie in April of 2007 and felt very strongly about continuing and expanding the social season activities.  I did not do this alone, of course.  As Gabrielle Riel discusses in her blog post on the Snowflake Ball, there were several of us who worked on events throughout the next year or so.  Now the Duchess, I hosted the second Snowflake Ball again in Loch Avie (January 2008).  It proved to be a very fine event indeed, this time specifically including friends from other Steamland nations.

The next year brought some heartache to me personally as well as to many in all of our virtual world - the changes in the open space sims. I had to leave the lands that I so loved in order to continue to host events of any size.  The script and avatar limitations on the new homestead sims were just far too restrictive to meet my needs.  Her Excellency, Kamilah Hauptmann, allowed me to host the ball on her land and (frozen) water in Port Caledon.  It was a healing and sentimental event.

Last year's event was formal, but took us traveling through time musically.  Thanks to Mr. Icarus Ghost for the musical collaboration. As well, each guest was invited to wear a costume from one of their favorite periods in time.  What a wonderful and powerful night it was.  Honestly, each year I wonder how it can get better.  How can we continue to experience the revival of the "good old days" and yet feel new and fresh and improved?

And it happened again this year.  

There were so many of us this year - so many we had to have the parcel avatar limit lifted within the first 40 minutes of the event.  Old friends, new friends.  It was so good to collaborate with Gabrielle again on a formal event.  Steelhead.  Caledon. Winterfell. Babbage. New Toulouse.  Seraph City.

I am incredibly honored to have been able to share my home with you for so many years now.  Thank you for your friendship and love.

More pictures of the event may be found in my Flickr set.
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