I’m writing because I had a few thoughts that I thought I would express about fantasy fair, bear with me because I have a tendency to become wordy.
I wanted to convey that this year I believe you all outdid yourselves in the planning, execution, presentation of and spirit that I associate with Relay for Life. For the past 6 years I have been involved in RFL within my real life, helping where I can, supporting and doing what I can. Every year I walk… usually all night long until the morning hours when they do the ceremonies to close the event. Relay for me has become synonymous with community, support, love, and watching people work together towards a purpose. I have lost people to cancer, had a few scares, and seen people recover from it. When I found out years ago that RFL was within Second Life it was too late to join that year but the next I jumped at the opportunity. I involved myself and did a fair or two only to be disheartened after the event turned into a bunch of back biting undermining attempts at one group to discredit, sabotage or take away their authority rather than working together. I tried to make myself feel better with the thought that in the end RFL benefited and maybe the next year it would be better. The next few attempts for me to be involved needless to say were rather unpleasant. Shoddy workmanship, shoddy looking or half assed looking event venues, last minute thrown together events, lack of coordination, egos getting in the way and some of the worst parts being merchants/vendors becoming so obsessed with their placement, lack of sales, not giving items for donation… sometimes seeing the very worst of what I associate with online and how people treat each other coming to fruition all in the name of a cause I held dear to me. Each year becoming more disenchanted and withdrawing.
I had heard about Fantasy Fair, I had not been. I did not think I ‘fit’ in so I avoided it somewhat as a merchant. Last year I decided to try to get into it nearly at the cutoff point barely making it in probably never really knowing when sign ups started figuring I’d give it a try. At this point I didn’t expect much, generally expecting what I saw elsewhere… set up my spot, and watched. Listened. It is my nature to do so. I was rather impressed with the spirit I saw. I decided to do a jail and bail. Didn’t expect to do much, didn’t know if anyone really knew me or not… knowing really that being ‘known’ for that sort of thing generally helps bring in money. Didn’t do too bad, listened to Zander on the radio stream once or twice I think… watched some more. I didn’t wander that much but I felt pretty good at the close of the fair. I had seen a lot more positives, and was hopefully optimistic.
This year I decided I wanted to take a bigger part. Got a spot, donated something for the auction… ran a little behind and scurried to try to come up with some things that I felt were decent. I wandered more and became involved more, though I didn’t dare do something like a jail and bail. I spent time drumming, flying around as my petite self, watched a rather interesting wedding, and saw a fallen god face first in a kiddie pool, giants, dragons, genies, tinies, petites, you name it… I went to some events, listened to the radio stream, felt welcomed and stood entranced.
The first time I went from one sim to the other I held my breath as each unfolded. The scenery… the care taken… creating immersive and astounding environments where we could house our wares for a very temporary weeklong event. I can be a very meticulous builder and I’ll be honest it is difficult to impress me sometimes. I can pick apart a build easily, I can do a lot and I was very honestly blown away. Seeing them excited me to be a part of it… As the fair continues to unfold there were moments that I will always treasure. The exhibit with the paper boats that Khyle Sion did, reading the artists statement, being involved and sharing a paper boat… had me in tears. I was able to share that with someone very dear to me who had lost a family member due to cancer less than two years ago and know that it meant a lot to them as well. The outpouring from various people in the community, the camaraderie, the goofy parts, the fun parts, the awe inspiring and mundane… All of them combining to create a magical atmosphere.
You guys really pulled it off. I am honored that I was able to be able to be a part of this year’s fair and to be able to contribute in any way…. I sincerely look forward to next year finding myself very much moved as well as quite sad that it was only a week long. That the beauty created feels so fleeting not wanting to retreat back into work or the mundane and the ‘real world’ nasty parts of SL that always seem to weigh a person down.
Thank you for allowing me to be a part of Fantasy Fair… I hope that next year I can be even more involved, get to know folks a bit better and help spread a little bit of magic of my own.