When I woke up the next morning, I discovered that part of hosting guests involves saying goodbye, because they’re guests, not residents.
I felt heartbroken to think that those gnome kickers had left town.
And while it seemed that we’d been on a completely different wave-length than Irene and Roland, I felt sad that their visit here hadn’t seemed to bring them joy.
Sitting down to a breakfast of left-over baked Alaska helped a little bit. And when Gray reminded me that our next batch of guests had arrived while we were sleeping and that our next guests were none other than the Robinsons, all my happy moodlets overshadowed that one blue tile of missing friends.
Right after breakfast, as the solstice sun was rising, I hurried out to the garden so that my chores would be done in time for me to arrive at the B&B to make a nice “Welcome-to-Plum-Day” brunch for the RobFam crew.
While I was harvesting winter lilies, I spied a little guy walking down the sidewalk in front of our house.
It looked like it could possibly be little Vern, who was just a baby when we were at the festival.
I ran out and introduced myself. It was Vern!
Seems like everywhere Vern goes, he attracts partners in crime, for this other little guy showed up at just the same moment.
“Vern, meet your new partner!”
His little partner, all dressed for plum day in his purple shades, had to take off for the park, so that left Vern and me to discuss the coming apocalypse. Vern’s choice of topic, not mine. And one for which his imagination had no trouble filling in the details!
I was so happy to get to know Vern. He feels like family already!
Vern had to take off to the park, too. I guess that’s where all the boys are meeting up. Pirate ship, and all.
While I was getting ready to head over to the B&B, Dr. Jasmine stopped by, feeling as sad as I had earlier. Maybe even sadder.
But then she remembered what she had come over to tell us, and she brightened right up!
Emma and I went right over to greet them.
Mr. Robinson was dancing in the hallway when we arrived.
It felt amazing to return his hospitality and welcome him to Plum Day.
I fixed Monte Carlo sandwiches–with plum, of course–for brunch. We sat around the kitchen and shared them together.
Angela looked so relaxed on vacation. She’d been painting, and she didn’t even bother to change out of her paint shirt. I remembered how I expressed a different side to myself when I was at the festival, and so I knew how great it must feel for Ang to let go and express a side of herself that isn’t all dressed up and proper all the time.
Malcolm has grown into a young man. All that potential he displayed as a child, he has stepped into–plus more. He looks like he feels really great about himself and who he is, too. And that’s what Plum Day is all about!
Even though it was just a casual brunch, I felt like my heart was opening beyond its bounds–we were just smiles and laughter and good vibes in every direction!
When we got home, I was feeling so inspired that I started painting right away. Our next guest was coming soon, and I wanted to get a start on this painting before he arrived. Since the B&B would be full by nightfall, he was going to be staying with us.
Just as I was putting magenta on canvas, I felt someone standing behind me, looking at me.
It was Marcus Eugenius, who arrived a little early. Not Marcus Eugenius, the bishop of Ephesus in 1438, but the Marcus Eugenius of SimFan fic. THAT Marcus Eugenius. The creator of RobinsonFam–or should I say, @RobinsonFam his own sweet self!
I was already riding a fangirl high from lunch with the Robinsons, and I must admit I gushed when I met Marcus.
I think this is what I said, “Squee! Double-squee! Oh. Dimpa yedish! Narfa a devay! Oh! Fricka zhenay! I can’t believe you actually came! You’re here! It’s you! I’m your biggest fan. Well, no, I’m sure I’m not your only biggest fan because everybody who’s ever read your work is your biggest fan, but Oh. My. Gosh! You’re here! I mean, ohmigosh, you already know me! I mean, oh, llamas, you actually played me! I mean, oh crum, I was a playable in your game at your festival. Oh. Holy plum bob.”
And then it felt like the floor dropped out from under me. It felt kinda creepy, actually, because this guy I was talking to on our landing–the guy who was going to be staying with us for a few days–had been at my controls. He had seen inside me at the deepest levels. He had been able to make me do whatever he wanted.
Then Emma, who’d overheard my whole gush-ramble, said something that made the world stop. I won’t say that I experienced the death of the ego, but that’s what it felt like. She said, “Cathy Tea, relax. You do realize, don’t you, that you are also a SimSelf, and it is Cathy T. on the other side of the screen who is currently playing you, and, yes, is currently playing this digital expression of Marcus Eugenius.”
It was too much for me.
I had to abandon my hostess duties and run outside.
I went to one of my favorite spots and I looked out over my digital world. Sometimes, when I’m there quietly, the graphics disappear, and all I see are the digits. And then I can see past the digits, past the ones and zeroes, and into what composes them: those alternating currents of electricity. The pulse that is at the heart of the universe.
I sat there in the silence, and I felt what consciousness is. I felt the spot within me which is aware of the empty beats between the pulses of energy. I realized that within Marcus Eugenius, on this side of the screen and the other, existed an analogous point of consciousness. This point is both individual and universal simultaneously.
I fell back together. This one point within me, which is my own individual awareness, is also intrinsically connected to all that is. And within Marcus Eugenius exists a similar point of awareness: both individual to him and connected to all that is. And in that simple realization, I felt a connection to all. To every digital being on this side of the screen, and to each individual being on the other side of the screen.
We act our little parts. We live our little lives. Yet in their littleness, our beings expand into the vastness of all that is. And nothing is small, and everything is small, down to each pulse of energy that composes who we are at the deepest level of our coding.
“Oh, lor-ay!” When faced with mystery, that is all one can say. At home, dirty dishes waited to be washed. More plum spice cookies waited to be baked. A puddle in the upstairs bathroom waited to be mopped. All the little stations of life awaited me, small tasks of daily devotion which, in their everyday simplicity, connect me with what our consciousness is digitally embodied to do: serve others in support of self and the harmonious flow of the game itself.