It only took me two years, but I finally know what people are talking about when they talk about Windlight. Oh, I knew it had to do with lighting. I thought it was some special add-on thing that you had to learn. I never grasped that it was already in the SL viewer. Live and learn. Or rather, hang out with Honour and let her teach me all the things I’m too lazy to learn on my own. I do sometimes wonder why my curiosity level for these things is so very low. “Why?” gets my interest all the time. “How” never really seems to interest me until I come smack up against it.

I’ve been trying to force myself out of my sky box and back into the world. I tried to plead hunger when Honour IM’d me the other day, inviting me to come and see the world. It WAS my lunch hour, after all. But she reminded me of my resolution so I took the taxi and arrived in Innsmouth. Innsmouth is a wonderful build, New England in the 1930s – straight out of H.P. Lovecraft. If you don’t know Lovecraft but you like creepy, unsettling stories, you MUST read his writing. What intrigues and terrifies me about his writing is that it is so completely plausible. Totally realistic, believable, true-to-life until the moment he opens a seemingly everyday door. And then you step through into horror. I can be sitting in my own very wonderful warm secure house, in bright sunshine, with my pets around me, birds chirping outside and if I am reading Lovecraft, I start twitching, looking behind me, running out of doors into the sunlight, where nothing can sneak up on me. I BELIEVE in Cthulhu at that moment and I am SCARED.

We went first to the movie theater. It was beautifully creepy and evocative. You can SMELL the decay. Honour reviewed the basics of camming about for me and then we proceeded out to explore. I’d never dropped down the environment menus before. First I went through some of the canned settings for windlight (world/sun/environment editor/advanced sky/presets). Then I started moving the sliders and tints and colors. It was such fun to watch the sky change, the lighting change, the shadows. Between the great build and the monsters and mutant toads and playing with the environment, it was a wonderful way to spend a lunch hour.

Things change so quickly in SL these days, so get yourself over to Innsmouth and explore. It’s a wonderfully spooky place. Make sure you have your sound turned on, because there are wonderful sounds effects as well!