The Lovers’ tent

I’ve never been much for hunts, and I don’t remember blogging them before. Sometimes the stores are too big and sprawling to even find the prizes (even with clues), but I’m happy to say that the ‘Flirty Summer Hunt’ landed me at the Fire and Ash Design store, and the L$1 gift here is a ‘Lovers’ Tent’.

None of the poses contained therein are of an overtly sexual nature, and are more of the ‘cuddly’ variety.

On a day like today in the UK where temperatures have soared over 30 degrees, naturism will have been a perfectly comfortable garden/beach/sun club activity.

In spells of weather like this we have a tendency to erect a pop up garden gazebo, so that outdoor, nude living is possible without the danger of burning under a particularly fierce sun. I’ve spent most of yesterday and today outdoors with the children, a paddling pool nearby, a table, chairs and BBQ set up adjacent to it, and thanks to increased wireless coverage, I’m posting from there right now, with us having just eaten our dinner.

pop-up-gazebo-pavilion-3m-x-3m-fsgpro-kr-31053-pPop up garden gazebo

Naturist or not, these items of garden furniture extend any family home and provide opportunity for outdoor living. We’ll be making the most of ours while this fabulous weather lasts (note: thunderstorms forecast for tonight with decent weather, not quite so hot, to continue for the remainder of the week).

I suggest that you might wish to pop along to Fire and Ash Design and grab your own copy of the Lovers’ Tent, one in which you can smooch with your S.O at the end of a hot SL day.

Ella

I stand for peace

In one of those weird bits of SL synchronicity, my recent posts have been edging towards how we as an SL community (and in a wider, RL sense, a naturist community), must hold hands in the face of a fractured world out there, one in which -for example- we’ve seen Islam chased from or walk away from virtual role-play.

We’ve witnessed the horrors of Paris, Brussels, Nice, Charlie Hebdo, Baghdad, the Blue Mosque, the blowing up of airliners, Beirut, Orlando and, in recent days, the routine murder of police officers in different locations in the U.S.

Trawling the blog sites this evening I chanced on one of my regular blogs, Lona Lenroy’s, and immediately drawn to her ‘I stand for Peace’ posting.

There’s a Flickr Group, I stand for Peace, where you can post photos of what peace means to you.

One of the things that has struck me about the hate we see is the destruction of ancient cities, such as Palmyra by the medieval death cult that is ISIS/ISIL/Daesh.

These are places where our enlightenment, as the human race, originated. Places where knowledge was gathered, learning spread. Islam, let us not forget, gave the world (in no particular order), coffee, the guitar, algebra, universities, the toothbrush, magnifying/reading glasses, hospitals. Imagine our lives without these. And yet these murdering idiots wish to bomb much of their and our western culture out of existence?

We will be contributing to this Flickr group over the course of this week and adding photographs of our own, of course with our own ‘naturist’ perspective, placing models within locations which will reflect, as best we can, the ancient, wonderful Islamic world, with the power of the nude female intended to create a harsh juxtaposition to the patriarchal, self-loathing of these atavistic lunatics.

catin arabic house3_001b

We need a world in which there is respect for one another, either by gender, colour, creed or lifestyle. A world in which we can co-exist in peace.

Ella

 

SL clothes shopping gets tiresome after a while

You’ll know, if you’ve followed either SL-FKK or SL Naturist, that we do like to go shopping for clothes and accessories that may complement a naturist environment.

I know that I do check the blogs regularly for what’s new and exciting.

The answer, for me, is ‘not a lot’. I’ve all the jeans, bikinis, lingerie I’ll ever need in SL, and the clothes eventually begin to look very much the same.

When I started in SL there was greater variety in the clothes available, as designers would try to reflect clothing from different cultures. As time has gone on ‘the rest of the world’ has seemingly been squeezed out by a European/American brand of ‘couture’ (as have the various sims available…Islam seems to have been erased entirely from SL, for example. I’ve been looking tonight in respect of research for a future post, and find there’s one mosque in all of SL, and that built by non-Muslims!).

Aren’t clothes designers missing a trick here? Surely there’s enough regional differences in dress codes to allow people to embrace different clothing styles for SL and offer something entirely different. Some examples of traditional dress are offered on this page.

‘But there’s not really any profit in what’s going to be a limited number of sales’, designers might say. Really? It seems to me that elements of different clothing styles can be adapted for other use in SL.

For example, my friend Omar pointed me in the direction of a shop called 10sai, which is offering a free outfit which I guess is Afghan in intent (or at least from that area of Asia).

Here he is wearing the free (L$0, no group join fee) outfit.

omar afghan_001b

I like it because it’s different, it’s non-western. I also like it because there’s one element of it I can adopt for a naturist setting…

ella towel_001b

I’m sure it was never intended to be used in such a manner, that of ‘the semi-permanent towel naturists sling over their shoulder’, but it’s necessary to ‘think outside the box’.

Omar agreed! 🙂

Well, he is a SL naturist, and I met him some years ago at, I think, Su Casa Naturist. He’s not from a country where naturism is possible, officially at least, and so he uses SL as a ‘second best’, to mix with others of a like-mind.

omar nude_001b

 

Again, this is feeding into my ‘nudity in different societies’ research, which we’ll address soon.

Consider the following…

african

I saw this on a pinterest board, of traditional costumes from around the world. The dress, the necklace, the hair, the headscarf, even the paint on the woman’s face (tattoo layer, anyone?) are all ripe for designers to use and broaden the scope of their work, and again this dress could be used in a variety of SL settings, not just within and African sim or on an African styled avatar.

So why not go to it, SL designers, and excite sometimes jaded palettes with the wonderful variety of clothing the real world has to offer?

Ella

 

 

An ‘honour’ killing is simply a murder

There’s a story floating around the media about the death of Pakistani celebrity Qandeel Baloch at the hands of her brother in an ‘honour killing‘.

That is, a family member kills another because they believe the victim has dishonoured the family name.

Qandeel-Baloch

Qandeel Baloch

Miss Baloch, aged 26, had become known as ‘Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian’. No lurid sex tape, no ridiculous nude selfies, of course, but some ‘racy’ (in the context of Pakistani society) photos and and a talent for self-publicity that ran counter to the country’s deeply patriarchal society.

She is not the first Pakistani to taunt conservative patriarchs, Veena Malik previously becoming embroiled in such ‘scandals’, and indeed Ms. Malik’s exploits were one of the first stories I covered on ‘SL Naturist’ away back in 2011!

Ms Malik appears to have got married in the interim, had a couple of children and, probably for her own safety, moved away from Pakistan.

Veena-Malik

Veena Malik

If anything, Ms. Malik was possibly more outrageous in her pushing of the boundaries, as with her infamous photoshoot in which she posed with a grenade and the letters ‘ISI’ (the Pakistani security services) drawn on her arm.

While this story isn’t directly ‘naturist’, it demonstrates how far behind some countries are in their acceptance of women as equal citizens, how the patriarchy fear a strong woman’s capability to have any sort of power  or independence (notwithstanding the fact that Pakistan previously elected Benazir Bhutto as Prime Minister, with her subsequent assassination believed by some to have been ordered by then President Musharraf).

Benazir-Bhutto-Young

Benazir Bhutto

In many parts of the world, women continue to be ‘a threat’ to some societies and cultures, and the thought of a naked women -or a woman using her nudity- is anathema, with women always, always, always being subjected to lesser freedoms than the male of the species. It’s not even an eastern/Muslim/Hindu -don’t forget that the rape of young Indian women or tourists is a recurring theme in that part of the world– developing world phenomenon. While the west may be a little more enlightened than to indulge in ‘honour killings’, never forget that top freedom is anathema to many parts of the west, and nudity on social media is a taboo, while the same social media are content to permit depictions of medieval practice, such as beheadings.

All of this is filtering into the articles I’m currently working on, and it seems that parts of these now very long posts will have to be filtered off into standalone posts to ensure that the message isn’t lost.

Ella

 

It’s always time for a makeover

It’s usually around about the New Year that I will take a look at my avatar and make a change or two, usually subtle ones. I don’t radically overhaul my avatar, but maybe there’s a slight shift in hair colouring, new glasses, the very same thing I’d be doing in real life.

Of course, any of us can overhaul our avatars at any time, and it can be unexpected things that see us seeking change.

One example is my friend Liz, who hasn’t been one for spending huge amounts of cash in her Second Life, being something of a scavenger when it comes to change.

lizzie dyke 1_001b

Here’s Liz, sporting free hair, skin, clothes and tattoos (although they aren’t visible in this photo).

lizzie dyke back tattoo_001b

And here she is without clothes, sporting freebie tattoos which certainly look extremely dated.

I’ve not been able to get into the Hair Fair yet (‘sim full’ is the message I’ve got so far, not unusual for the first few days of this fabulous annual event).

Liz has managed to get in and her eye was immediately grabbed by a free gift at the Tomboi display, a hairstyle called ‘Glenn’, which she loved, as she says it gives her more of a, well, tomboy look.

It was this one item that convinced her to upgrade her jaded look, stopping off at Artisanna tattoos to join their free group, grab some free group gifts, and re-invent.

lizzie dyke new hair clit ring_001b

The tattoo she is wearing is called ‘Milky Way’. She suggests that other changes will now follow and, more importantly, she feels the new look has reinvigorated her Second Life. I suppose the lesson is that if you are feeling a little jaded, a new look, at any time, will help add a little extra something to your SL.

Ella

The world we’re living in (pre-amble)

I’m not, never have been and never will be a God-botherer. I’m quite content that others feel differently, but as long as they don’t impose their value system on my value system, I’m in favour of ‘live and let live’.

I have, however, read numerous religious texts in my lifetime, in order to at least understand the world’s major (and some minor) religions.

Sadly, the reality is that others don’t always take this view, and they feel the need to impose their values on me, in a very vocal, political and often legal manner to get their way.

For example, I’m not opposed to abortion. I don’t agree with it being ‘on demand’, used as a contraceptive, in effect, but I recognise that there are some people for whom abortion is a solution. It wouldn’t be my solution, ever, but it exists and is probably best being administered under proper clinical conditions rather than in back streets.

Yet there are some for whom abortion is anathema, up to and including murder in order to oppose what they see as murder (of an unborn child).

Chase the links in the link above and a pattern emerges. Religion sits at the back, in most instances, of the ‘justification’ of these crimes.

You don’t need a religion to have a code of morality. Agnostics and atheists seem perfectly capable of working within a moral framework – we could even call that moral framework ‘The Ten Commandments‘- while cutting out the middlemen, the religious ‘leaders’ who often corrupt the pure word of God for their own ends.

I have had conversations where a Christian will say one thing to me as indisputable fact, to which I present a counter-argument, and yes, I can actually quote from the Bible in support of my argument. The usual get-out clause is cited. ‘That’s not the true word of God, that’s from the x version of the Bible’.it-is-about-tolerance-and-respect-for-everyone-by-everyone-Pno2BO-quote

I might quote from the Tripitaka, Buddhist scriptures, to which a response might be that the Christian doesn’t recognise that, thereby dismissing the views of 488m practitioners around the globe (none of them doing much killing in the name of Buddha).

Then there’s the ‘Muslim question’. There’s the ‘Black Lives Matter’ question. There’s numerous questions about how we get back to a harmonious world in which a white Christian can freely holiday in, say, Afghanistan without fear, a Muslim can walk the streets in religious dress without hate, a black man can reach for his driver’s licence without fear of death.

We’re living in an increasingly fractured world. The temptation is to log in to Second Life and pretend the problems don’t exist, problems more often than not caused by religious divisions out there in the real world. If not directly caused by religion, they’re caused by geo-politics and the needs to extract every drop of oil from the globe (then what? Shouldn’t we be addressing ‘the future’ now and seeking an alternative to oil dependency? One of the things that the World Naked Bike Ride addresses, incidentally).

I’m working on a couple of pieces that will pull these ideas together in a way that also tags naturism and naturist ideals as part of the solution.

I tried this before (and failed) when editing ‘The SL Naturist’, but this time I’m determined to see this through to the end and make a statement about how it’s an ethos of acceptance of one another, tolerance and respect -all central planks in the naturist ethos- that will see us through the awful times we currently inhabit. Part 1 should be up in 2-3 days, with the second part following 2-3 days thereafter.

Ella

 

 

Je suis Nice

memorial_001cHashtags and temporary profile photos on social media won’t change much, of course, other than for those of us who stand in solidarity against this senseless mass murder to express that solidarity.

hqdefault

We’ve been here before. We probably will be again.

The ever-growing SL ‘Memorial Garden’ relating to these mindless atrocities already has Nice added to the list of placards with which to express solidarity.

There is something deeply depressing that this SL landmark appears to be something of a ‘growth industry’ when one surveys the way it has grown since the Paris attacks on Charlie Hebdo and the Bataclan.

Ella

 

 

Is it safe to come out now?

Wow! What a tumultuous three weeks for those of us here in the UK.

An unexpected Brexit vote (explained in this post by Trine), resignation by the Prime Minister, a rollercoaster ride by the pound sterling (£) in comparison to the dollar and Euro, and then the anointment of our new Prime Minister, Theresa May.

Theresa_May

This means that, in the UK, it’s women who hold many of the top political positions.

First Minister for Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon

First Minister for Northern Ireland, Arlene Foster

Leader of the Scottish Conservatives, Ruth Davidson

Leader of the Scottish Labour Party, Kezia Dugdale

Leader of the Green Party, Natalie Bennett.

As seismic change to the political landscape of the UK (and its relationship with the rest of Europe) begins to settle, I think most of us will be able to drag ourselves away from the news more often, and I’ll be trying to cover all things naturist in and out of SL while Trine remains on holiday.

Ella

 

 

σε διακοπές

trine vacation_001b

σε διακοπές…I’m off on vacation tomorrow evening, arriving in Greece in the early hours of Monday morning. Yes, it’s a naturist vacation, and no, I’ve no broad experience of Greek naturism, other than one beach in my distant past.

This time, we’re going with another couple, good friends of ours from our sun club, and we’re hiring a boat. The idea is to sail around some islands and drop anchor at secluded beaches and bays for a day’s sunbathing, swimming and snorkelling. And life will be almost certainly (weather permitting) 24/7 naturism on board.

I’ve no idea what time or internet signal I’m going to get on the ocean wave, so it’s possible it will be ‘over and out’ from me for the next three weeks. Or I may get some signal if we pull into a harbour for the night and dine out, in which case I’ll try to update you.
In the meantime,  Ella will resume the editor’s chair for the short term.

Trine

Put your nipples away!

There are some weird people around. Like The Daily Mail and Twitter users.

Serena Williams, a succesful sportswoman by any stretch of the imagination, won another Wimbledon tennis title this afternoon, but all people (well, the Daily Mail and Twitter users) could think of were her nipples.

‘Distracting’.

What? I’m sorry? You had the chance to watch one of the top games in the world tennis tour this afternoon, and all you could think about, focus on, were her nipples?

35F983F100000578-3678536-image-a-18_1467912901572

There are some silly people around. Most of them seem to have a Twitter account.

Trine