Wandering through the Morning Dew

But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane
In proving foresight may be vain:
The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men
Gang aft a-gley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promised joy.

– Robert Burns, To a Mouse, 1786

I don’t often start a blog post with a poem, but in this case, it seemed appropriate, because this last week or so has been marked by my schemes going awry on an almost daily basis, particularly where Second Life is concerned. Following the deployment of the new interest list code, for example, I jumped over to one of my favourite regions I know to be running on BlueSteel, intent on giving a write-up of how the new code works – only for the code to be rolled back …

Nor have recent attempts to blog about another region I frequently visit, but have yet to blog about go any better. Such is the popularity of that region that my PC decided that repeatedly keeling over in a heap and whimpering quietly was preferable to struggling with the load…

Morning Dew
Morning Dew

Sometimes, however, such upsets in the road of life can prove to be serendipitous. For had the best laid schemes o’ avatars named Pey, nae gang aft a-gley (so to speak mangle), then I’d probably not have stumbled upon Teresa Matfield’s wonderful Morning Dew in her region of Westdell.

The home of Teresa’s T-Spot  Design, which provides a wide range of full permission sculpt kits for builders and content creators, the region describes itself as “A peaceful place in an old world theme,” and invites people to, “Visit the old village, the tower ruin, Merlin’s cottage or have a drink at the old Tavern.”

Morning Dew
Morning Dew

The arrival point delivers visitors to the gates of a walled village. Here the weary traveller can seek spiritual sustenance at the little church, cool their feet in the pond or seek sustenance of a different sort at the Drunk Monk Tavern before buying provisions at the little store. Geese and chickens wander the rutted tracks of the village, watched over by a cat who may also have thoughts of sustenance on his mind. It is a tranquil scene, ideally suited to an early morning or late afternoon setting. Amble through the village and you’ll come to the bakery, where you’ll find the teleporters to Teresa’s store in the sky overhead, itself worth a visit if you have any interest in building and / or landscaping.

Beyond the walls of the village, tracks and paths wend their way across the region, each leading to one or more points of interest – such as Merlin’s cottage, as mentioned in the region’s description, and in which a broom busily sweeps the floor, reminiscent of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, albeit without the water.

Morning Dew
Morning Dew

Walk through the woods and past leafy resting spots with birds calling from overhead, and you’ll come to fields of grass where sit cottages and, on the horizon, a tall windmill and house atop a hill. Ruins are also waiting to be found by those willing to seek, rising up against a backdrop of distant hills across the water. There are hills to climb as well, passing standing stones and with paths leading up to a high observation point with a waterfall rushing downward. Here one can stand and watch the sun set between the hills sheltering the bay, or sit with a close one and talk away the hours until the stars come out to share their secrets.

Morning Dew is a superbly photogenic region, with everything within it  – both Teresa’s own creations and those made by a number of noted talents in SL – bought together in a magnificent blend to create an idyllic setting ideal to escape the pressures of the world, and which offers the imagination a myriad of openings for tales to be woven.

Morning Dew
Morning Dew

As is probably more than obvious to regular readers, photogenic, natural regions are a magnet for me; so it’ll come as no surprise that Morning Dew has, from my first visit, captured a part of my heart. Truth be told, there has been a something of a void in my SL in the weeks since Scribbled Hearts at Water Reserve went away. In happening upon Morning Dew, I may just have found something to fill that void quite perfectly.

I didn’t set out to discover or explore Morning Dew; as I said at the top of this piece, my focus for SL today was very different up until things went a little higgledy-piggledy. All-in-all, I’m glad they did, because this is where the magic of Second Life remains; no matter where you roam or what you see, there is always something new to be discovered, and there are always opportunities by which frustration can be turned to joy. Morning Dew has been a joyful discovery for me, and I’ve little doubt I’ll be back as and when I can, if only to sit under the trees and listen to the birds.

So don’t be surprised if you trip over me during your own visit!

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Changes to the Abandoned Land Policy

secondlifeLinden lab have made alterations to the Mainland Abandoned Land Policy as of January 15th, 2013. The changes see the policy largely rationalised to improve readability, particularly the sections relating to purchasing Abandoned Land, claiming Abandoned Land and triggering an auction.

However, what may cause concern are the changes made to land abandoned in error.

Previously, this was handled as follows (Abandoned Land Policy, June 2011):

When a mainland parcel is abandoned, there is a short period (from one hour to 24 hours) during which an owner can reclaim the land if he/she abandoned it in error. After that period, objects on the land are returned to the original owner, the name of the parcel changes to “Abandoned Land – For Sale,” and ownership transfers to Governor Linden. The land can then be purchased by anyone with a premium account.

The revised policy now states:

When a mainland parcel is abandoned, the ownership of the parcel changes to Governor Linden.  There is no Linden dollar (L$) grant related to abandoned land.  Once abandoned, the parcel settings are amended to reflect the abandoned status and auto-return settings are enabled after one week.

I abandoned my land by mistake!

You should never expect to be able to reclaim abandoned land.  Please use care to make sure that any abandonment action is intentional.  However, if you do make a mistake, please submit a support case as soon as possible.  Include the parcel location and explain that you would like to reclaim a parcel you abandoned by mistake.  We can attempt to make a one-time courtesy effort to recover the land for you.

This effectively means that the automated buy-back of abandoned land is being eliminated. The new code is alrweady live on the Magnum RC. Concerns were raised at the Server Beta User Group meeting that this could make obtaining mainland harder, as use cases exist whereby the short-term abandonment of land can assist with land purchases (such as obtaining a section of abandoned land to increase land holdings without actually trigger a tier rise).  While Maestro Linden himself was in no position to comment on the policy change, he did offer to feed concerns back to the Land Team.

Note this policy relates to Mainland only, and does not apply to private regions.

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