As always, it’s Kate’s use of open space which is the first thing that impresses itself on me when I arrive. The landing point is a small bike hire shop and you walk out onto a huge, open jetty. The size of interiors in SL seems to be steadily shrinking whilst the big outdoors reclaims its majesty. Increasingly, I find myself waiting for the Oculus Rift.
There are several fields of long grasses. A walk along a cliff-top path leads to the space pictured above, which also includes a small wooden performance area. Everything is very carefully placed. Kate has arranged builds for SL creators that include Ionic, Apple Fall, Post, Culprit and The Domineaux Effect.
What I like most about this place is the slight edge of decay. I enjoy seeing and touching faded wood and gently rusting metal. I enjoy this most when these old things are framed by plants and sunlight and soil. It is a counterbalance between energy and entropy. Leka, which Kate explained to me is a Swedish word for ‘play’, is a very sensory environment. I can almost smell it. My favourite spot is in the greenhouse next to the potting shed. It evokes memories of long-ago visits to an elderly friend I once had in Cornwall.
There’s a beach at the western edge of the island, where a windswept fence struggles to separate sand and sea.
And, of course, there are horses.