Karima Hoisan is my avatar. I am Karima Hoisan in the virtual world.
Sentimental and nostalgic, I look back on the eve of my virtual birthday
on what it means to be an avatar in 2020.
For me this was never a game..I took it seriously from the first moment I fell from the virtual sky and landed on an island that would become my own..because “Destiny Is.”
December 26, 2007.
I will be 13 years old this Saturday! We celebrate this moment called a “Rez Day”, as it marks the first time, an avatar named Karima Hoisan was born , entered and became part of Second life. I took my first virtual breath as a digital newborn in the body of a newly chosen avatar.
My first days were friendless, clueless but amazed 😱
I have lived and learned to navigate the virtual world
and now I am considered an oldie…a veteran.
In this last year I have felt its comfort, where I can take everything
that is inside of me, that makes me, me and put it in a virtual body that is still healthy.,
in a world that is still healthy and functioning normally.
My avatar 2008…beginning to adjust, navigate,
decorate and make friends…
I am soul infused.
In a world where people circulate without masks and there is no pandemic going on, but there is comfort for those who have lost someone, or are sick, there are people to reach out to and they can touch you.
The more you navigate the world, the more feelings you can feel..you can even trick your body to perceive what you should not be able to perceive: the smells of crisp fresh air of a pine forest breeze, or the ocean roaring in at your feet.
I am a soul-infused avatar
everything you know and feel about me, through my poetry, you can feel when
my avatar speaks to you…
I can dance and run through the fields, and in sheer exuberance,
take off and fly over the tree tops..This now seems natural to me..
and my heart fills with joy.. and this joy fills me with peace and inspiration.
I can dance boleros, create, amazing projects with others and laugh in crowds
yet feel safe, even when someone sneezes.
I am paranoia free in my virtual world, when if stressed, I can float and bob in the waves and hear the sounds and feel the water holding me.
A floating Welcome-back for Nat
I am not watching a cartoon figure navigate a video game, I am that creature..the avatar and I see everything in this world through my eyes… The borders of my 15 inch screen have disappeared and like the looking glass I pass inside;
I see, just like in real life. I can appear real or surreal..it makes no difference, I am still inside.
Floating With Dale, brainstorming a project
I have loved and lost and cried real tears and felt real pain,
but I have learned to bounce back and learn to live it again.
I have made films, read my poetry to thousands of people over the years, created music, and become a 3D artist and sculptor.
Giving Poetry Readings to 25-40 people from all over the world in all different venues:
The swamps of New Toulouse Louisiana or Historic Clubs like The Chelsea in NYC
I inherited 2 Pisces sisters along the way, one from The Midwest USA and one from South Africa and another sister from.London for almost 13 years.
I watch videos every night for 11 years at the same time with a friend and Buddy in Florida:) I create worlds with my best scripter friend Dale Innis in New York. and none of those things would be possible living in my small Latin American town, that is mostly locked down again for the great spike in Covid cases
“Mad Men” in Virtual with Menubar! Can you see us sitting in our little highchairs?
Brainstorming with Dale Innis
I have friends who smile and interact with me from all the continents.
I can take in a live show of music where the musicians might be playing in different countries and yet we hear them in harmony and sync real time and we can ask for a favorite song and they will play it with our dedication!!:)
I have been a horse, a vampire, a tiny snow leopard and anything I can imagine, I can be for awhile…The possibilities are limitless..If you can imagine it..you can create it You can be it!
At the Opera with my hedgehog friend:)
Now… in 2020 I realize how very important the virtual world can be.
because in this last year, life droned on out of pitch and out of time…
and instead of doing lunch, meeting up for coffee and holding and shaking hands..
we stayed at home and ran away from each other;
we kept our distances, we covered our faces ,we washed-our hands and
lost our sense of human touch.
A hug is a hug in any world
As an avatar, a hand on my shoulder is not an idle gesture
It is a connection and I feel it and feel very lucky to be so alive virtually.
In a time of not very many, I am still making memories, and the brain processes a virtual experience in the same way as a real one. How many chats can you remember? How many zoom calls will you recall? Ah but to dance on the sand and hear the pounding of the waves..to laugh with your sisters until you cry..those memories will stay forever and….
You can take pictures!!
Gamma & Shesa at Kari’s Bar & Dance Circa 1920’s
Natascha Randt & Karima Hoisan- Randt & Hoisan Productions
So free to be me, when in my virtual day, while outside, I am shuttered in my home, watching like a skeptical spectator all the kings horses and all of his men,
trying to reassemble Humpty Dumpty again and bring that human longing for connection, that human need for touch and laughter and purpose, back to us in our real lives.
I am so grateful for these last 13 years of a virtual life, that I have lived fully
and parallel to my real life!!!
Happy Rez Day to me December 26, 2020!! I’m all grown up:)