The party was a great success and felt very real to me – except the food 🙂 I had decorated the place a day before. After the lesson, we went into the garden and the Islamonline.net manager, Breathe Swindlehurst and I gave short speeches and handed the framed certificates (see picture) to the students one by one. Then, the student who had built objects in this course showed the others around in the small exhibition and we all talked about them. Dennis wanted to know more about the board game and students explained and played it.
We even had a “friendly” griefer visit us at the party (the one in the uniform). His flying and jumping around like wild (which was probably meant to scare or make us nervous) would have been annoying during a lesson but at the party it was more fun. When Dennis (British) and I were chatting about the word die/dice, the friendly griefer from the US even offered an explanation. At one point though, he felled compelled to say “We are watching you”, I guess meaning the US army vet group he belongs to with “we” and present Muslims with “you”. This group’s favourite hangout is Islam-related sims and a member of the same group in full-compat gear approached me once with the same nervous flying and jumping around and wanted to free me from my oppression :-D. We’ve become friends and he confessed that he has given up because nobody wanted to be freed.
We had all fun with the dressing table that lets you select gestures which your avatar then performs in front of the mirror (see Dennis in the pictures). One student was riding his bike while others preferred sitting on the bench and chatting or playing tic-tac-toe.
The party was, of course, a huge opportunity to practise speaking and chatting in English and even the quieter students participated more actively.
More and more guests were arriving but at one point at around 1.30 am, when the conversation started switching to Arabic and French more and more, and the virtual black teach didn’t help me stay awake, I left the party and cleaned up after I had spent a nice day at the seaside – in Real Life mind you.