Commune Utopia

It was a bit of a shock to discover, on Friday night, that one of the most vibrant naturist events going at the moment is at Commune Utopia, a non-naturist but very much clothing-optional location in SL.

I ended up chatting to so many, for so long, that I appear to have done myself a bit of a mischief regarding my arm this morning; it’s not meant to be doing that extent of typing and being held in a specific position. Never mind, it was worth it for the insight into an absolutely rocking SL location.

I’ll work backwards. This morning, I asked Diane to head over there and take a few photos to capture the essence of the place (my own photos, from last night’s clothing optional party, will show exactly why I send someone with an eye for photography over there!). So here’s a selection of the shots she took, and which readily demonstrate that it’s an idyllic spot, a clever and imaginative build that also shows off SL at its very best, for a variety of reasons.

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So let’s start with the first photo. It’s a sign that references La Reserva Forest Foundation in Costa Rica. For every L$4000 the residents of Commune Utopia donate, another tree is planted to re-forest farmland in that country. Already the residents have exceeded this month’s (?) target and thus another tree is planted. This, to me, represents ‘giving back’, to the world. We all need trees to survive, as they help to create oxygen, not just for Costa Rica, but for all of us. What a fantastic idea!

In the week where we’ve noted the passing of Christiane Lecocq, and celebrated the work of France Guillaim, both of whom have adopted a holistic approach to the naturist lifestyle, it’s fantastic to see that a similar mentality is in play within SL. While we can play naked, we need to remain aware that being nude is just one part of the naturist lifestyle. It encompasses other aspects of living, and Sedi, Commune Utopia’s owner, is taking a strong lead in promoting some of those elements.

After that, Diane has captured the essence of the place beautifully in the other photos.

Going back to last night, Friday night is a designated C-O (clothing optional) party. I’m pleased to say that 90% of the attendees were naked, cramming onto a dance floor and bopping the night away. I think that where it’s such a huge success is that it begins at 10pm (UK time) and thus is ideal for us Brits, other central European locations and even the eastern seaboard of the US & Canada, which captures a crowd ideally.

Conversation was ongoing in chat, enhancing the social element of SL that used to be such an integral part of the SL experience but is now sometimes lacking.

I took photos, of course. 🙂

It’s not my place to ‘out’ anyone (even in naked avatar form) on the blog, so some can’t really be shown until I could get permission from those present for their images to be shown (in nude form, anyway, I’m more relaxed about using photos of clothed avatars even without permission, providing they aren’t identified by name).

And so my choice is limited, but I think this one (focal zoom applied to ‘blur’ the other dancers) will give a flavour of how busy it was!

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Another huge box ticked for myself (and a listening in RL Mr. Keng) was the music feed, expertly DJ’ed by Sunshine, a lovely looking lady who, I am told, lives in South Africa and thus has a great interest and knowledge in African music. Mr. Keng approved wholeheartedly. I’ve said this before, but he’s not an enthusiastic SL player, but even he murmured that Commune Utopia’s Friday night party could become our RL Friday night listening experience if the quality of Sunshine’s set is anything to go by.

I IM’ed Sunshine to get a couple of links to the music she was playing, just to give you a flavour of your dancing experience at the Commune, and you’ll find the links below.

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Sunshine, Commune’s DJ, with a naked Ella in the background

 

Once again, I found the music was enhancing my SL experience. An imaginative set list that reflected the vibe, rather than just a series of tunes being fed in from an iPod without any thought. Sunshine would interject from time to time and was also keeping us informed as to what was being played, leaving Mr. Keng scrambling for a pen and paper in order to do some follow up research. See? SL doesn’t have to be a passive thing. With the right people in control, it can become a wonderful, inter-active experience.

After all of that dancing, it was time for a quick dip in the Commune pool (approaching 100am, UK time) before logging out and going to bed, thrilled and excited. After seven years of SL it’s lovely to re-affirm the values that makes SL so special!

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Things seem to be moving so fast that when I visited this afternoon a new ‘clubhouse'(?) in an eco-build style seems to have been built, nestling into the greenness of the hillside where Commune Utopia is located.

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My next step will be to contact owner Sedi and speak to her about her thoughts, dreams, hopes and wishes for Commune Utopia. In the meantime, I’ll be going back to visit this marvellous sim on a regular basis.

Ella

Eden Celebration : Bumrose Adult Club

Who says you can’t find ‘adult’ material at Eden Naturopolis? I’m indebted to our occasional blogger Anne, who pointed me in the direction of the Bumrose Adult Club at Eden. I’m guessing Brenda’s never enlightened me on this one due to its theme. Anne’s going to do a proper write-up of its facilities, but she thought I’d like one animation set she found, and she’s right! While many of the animations are very much adult themed, and which I didn’t try out, there was a rather lovely writing desk in the corner of one room. Anne only gave me a generic landmark, so it took an age to find this tucked in the corner of an upstairs room.

I liked it because it pretty much reflects the day-to-day reality of writing this blog, and similarly clad in RL when weather permits, although today I’m sat at my own computer station wrapped up in layers.

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Sometimes inspiration strikes…

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…and there’s always photos to edit…this looks like Su Casa’s jet ski getting the cropping treatment.


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Articles get written easily…

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…or there’s writer’s block, or a lack of ideas for the blog (the latter doesn’t happen too often, SL’s naturist community is vibrant)

No link to the club on this post. I’ll leave that for Anne to do in her subsequent posting along with, I’m led to believe, some racy photos that wouldn’t normally turn up on SLN.

Ella.

LEA24

For those who’ve been in SL for any length of time, the ‘LEA’ -Linden Endowment for the Arts- sims are often something special, albeit temporary, on the grid.

They’re usually artistic or inventive in nature, but the current LEA24 is something else, to my mind.

It’s a coastline! 🙂 Just a coastline. But wait!karen lea24b_001bc

 

It’s developed from real photographs, and seemingly terraformed  to have it rise and fall with the real geography from whence it was created. I don’t know how this was done, and I suppose that, up close, the results aren’t ‘perfect’, but it’s stunningly unique. Too often the SL geography can look a bit ‘samey’. Pristine tropical beaches from one end of the grid to the other. But this…this is marvellous, reminding me of bits of the British Isles, wild and rugged, or Brittany in France. It does create something unique, a model posed in ‘real’ geography, a wild stony beach. If you want to backdrop some photography of your own against something new, I suggest you follow the link. If this is just a taste…where might SL’s world have changed in 2-3 years? I can’t wait to see if this inspires others, or if sim builders are inspired to create something different with their coastline. For ourselves, well…you could easily skinny dip here, bearing in mind that such geography is typical of the north Atlantic, where getting into the water can be ill-advised, temperature wise, even in summer!

It suited SLN’s purposes perfectly. Given that a lot of ‘art nude’ photography is created in nature, in wild, rugged places, it makes sense to pose a model accordingly. The b&w adds to the ‘art’ element of it. By way of contrast, here’s the colour original, so you can see how LEA24 looks ‘in the flesh’.
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To give an idea of the construction, here’s our model at the top of the hills, where you can see the RL photography overlaid on SL terraforming, and some SL trees added in. You can see the trees in the top photo, blending in nicely with the RL.

Pookes

Heroes of Naturism : Christiane Lecocq 1911-2015

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CHRISTIANE LECOCQ 1911-2014

Christiane Lecocq was regarded as the doyenne of the naturist movement. With her husband, Albert, she founded the world’s first naturist holiday resort in France and spearheaded the International Naturist Federation, an organisation that now has some 16 million members in 38 countries.

She was born on April 6, 1911 in Tourcoing, northern France, and grew up at a time when women were beginning to expose their ankles and arms, but otherwise remained strictly covered up. Naturism, defined by the International Naturist Federation as “a lifestyle in harmony with nature, expressed through social nudity, and characterised by self-respect of people with different opinions and of the environment”, was not invented in France.

Nude bathing had been traditionally practised in Scandinavia and Russia, but it was in Germany that an ideology of social nudity, known as Freikorperkultur (free body movement), originated in the 1870s. The practice was introduced into the rest of Europe, including France and Britain, in the 1920s.

Christiane first came across the practice in 1932, when she was invited to join the Club Gymnique du Nord, a sports club at Fort Seclin near Lille, where members played sports in the nude. It was there that she met her future husband Albert Lecoqc. They married in 1933 but for many years had to keep their naturist activities clandestine. There were no naturist camps or beaches: “We went to a place in the cliffs near Rouen where we were able to strip naked in secret at high tide,” she recalled.

For the Lecocqs naturism was about much more than nude sunbathing and skinny-dipping. It was a way of life: they did not drink or smoke, followed what would now be called a macrobiotic diet, and promoted “social nudity” as offering health and social benefits to people of all classes.

In 1944, during the German occupation, the Lecocqs founded the Club du Soleil France, an underground organisation dedicated to promoting what it called “family” and social naturism, with the aim of establishing naturist clubs in every city in France. The following year they opened a Club du Soleil at Carrieres-sur-Seine, which became an important centre for meetings as the movement grew.

In 1948 they founded the French Naturist Federation and the following year published the first edition of La Vie au Soleil, now the world’s leading naturist magazine. In 1950 they opened the world’s first naturist holiday resort, the Centre Helio-Marin (“centre of sun and sea”) at Montalivet, in the Gironde. Despite initial local opposition, the CHM Montalivet has grown from a simple makeshift camp to the most important naturist colony in Europe, attracting some 20,000 visitors per year. In 1951 the Lecocqs created the International Naturist Federation.

Lecocq continued to promote the cause after her husband’s death in 1969, regularly attending the General Assembly of the French Federation of Naturism, of which she was honorary president. She continued to follow the naturist way of life until she was more than 100 years old, by which time France had become the world’s leading naturist destination, spawning an industry said to be worth 250 million euro to the French economy.

In later years, however, Lecocq felt that the movement had lost some of the idealism of its founders. “Initially, we wanted to live in harmony with nature, to open ourselves to others, to pay attention to our diet,” she recalled – but the development of naturism as mass tourism meant that that spirit had largely gone.

Another one of those heroes you might not know of, but a vital figure in the development of naturism around the globe as we know it today. Christian Lecocq has passed away, aged 104.

We salute all she did for naturism for several decades.

Ella

Turtle Coast (and Wild Coast)

One location we’ve never covered, and a long-standing SL naturist location, is Turtle Coast.

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The reason we’ve not previously covered Turtle is because it has some naughty spots, and previously didn’t fit with our ‘genuine naturist’ criteria. That’s not to say it isn’t filled with genuine naturists, but sex poses, some in very public locations, kept it off our radar.

Diane, a member (as am I, incidentally) has been over there and taken the photos shown above. The naughtier end of what Turtle offers has been left out of our coverage, but locations like ‘Orgy Tent’ suggest it’s not quite the usual SLN location.

Diane says that ‘the sex is quite obviously available and there for those who want it, but in the main it’s more of a social meeting place. I go on a semi regular basis, and the focus is around the dance floor. Not too many people use the posable, as far as I know.’

Turtle started as an adjunct to Wild Coast, Kaiya Mumba’s long-running genuine naturist spot where a cuddle is as racy as it gets. Wild Coast was going when I first started in SL and was a place I visited almost daily, when I had more in world time (i.e before the blog). Wild Coast is still going, but is sadly under-used, with almost the entire clientele preferring Turtle.

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However, Diane’s visit led me to hop over to Wild Coast for old times sake and see what’s on offer there now.

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The place looks as great as it always did. The only thing missing is….people! I’d recommend if you still have a group tag to hop on over and explore what has become, sadly, a forgotten genuine  naturist sim.

Ella

 

Naked on Boats (1)

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I think we can all agree that nudity and boats go well together. The first time I and my late husband went abroad was on our honeymoon. This is away back in the early 1980s, before I even knew what ‘naturism’ was. On honeymoon we pretty much only had time for each other, and we were essentially going to bed early, rising late, and then lazing by the pool (in swimwear) the rest of the day.

One day we decided to go for a walk on a hillside path, above some cliffs, which was a bit of a mistake as we hadn’t factored in the intense Spanish sun as being so energy sapping. We sat down on the cliff’s edge, under the shade of a wall, to catch our breath, and away beneath us we saw a small motor cruiser  drop anchor. The lady of the couple was already topless, but to my utter surprise both she and her partner stripped off their swim shorts and dived off the edge of the boat naked. It seemed so erotic, so continental, so Latin.

Both of us were rather excited by the idea, so much so that later that night, emboldened by wine, we headed off hand in hand to a small cove about a mile away from our hotel, and unlike the one we’d seen earlier in the day which was inaccessible by land, at the bottom of a vertical cliff (albeit not very high), something we could scramble down onto.

It wasn’t an easy descent in the dark. Not dangerous, just something that required a little care. The ‘beach’ was shingle, maybe 30 metres wide by about 6 metres deep, and even though it was only us there, I think my heart was pounding as I took my first ever skinny dip with my husband. And -blush- I confess we made love in the warm waters at the bottom of a cliff in Menorca that night.

This hardly qualifies for our ongoing series ‘My Nude Debut’. I shall report my proper experience of that in due course. But it did make me realise that night that the the possibilities of nudity in the context of sailing was endless.

Eden Naturopolis is perfect for such an experience in SL, and Pookes has determined that we make another bit of a series out of the scenario.

There are all manner of yachts, motor cruisers and dinghies available to buy in SL.

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At Eden’s rotunda, the main tp point, you can rep a pedal boat and take to the waters immediately, to see if you like the idea of life on water. The idea is that we try to undertake a series of postings on boats and the possibilities for naturism on and around them. I suspect the couple we say all that time ago wouldn’t even regard themselves as naturist. They just got naked on a boat and swam naked in the sea from it.

Barbara

Heroes of Naturism : France Guillain

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The Naturist Living Show present an audio interview from July 2008 with France Guillain, the author of Le Bonheur d’être nu. Le Naturisme, un art de vivre. (The pleasure of being nude. Naturism, an art of living.) France has written many books on naturist health that have sold millions of copies throughout Europe. She has also shared her knowledge and experience through hundreds of articles, radio interviews and televisions shows. She currently teaches healthy living at conferences, seminars and through naturist retreats.

Ms. Guillain shares with some of her philosophies about naturist health, child rearing, sexuality and gender roles. She also talks about her fascinating life raising 10 children (5 adopted) as naturists. Finally, we discuss naturism in France and at her home club, Heliomonde.

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Author of the book ‘Le Bonheur d’être nu, le naturisme, un art de vivre’ (The Pleasure of being naked, naturism, an art of life), I urge you to listen to the podcast (via the youtube link) to get an insight into her remarkable holistic approach to naturism, where the lifestyle isn’t just about being naked, but embraces a whole set of values that most of us involved in genuine naturism share.

You probably won’t have heard of her, but her views are fascinating.

Ella