Saturday, September 13, 2014

Shadow Lane 2014- Part 1

I recently attended Shadow Lane for my second time. I first went in 2012 when some of my SCONY friends decided to come out west for it. Vegas is only about a 6 hour drive for me so it's the easiest party for me to get to and who can complain about not having to buy a plane ticket? A few friends from around the country were going to be there, some attending for their first time, and I decided to join them. Plans did change slightly when S told me he'd like to go with me. That was a nice surprise. We've never had a weekend away together before and he's never been around more than 2 spankos at one time before (shout out to you, jenna_kins). It was going to be interesting!

I figured he would love people because spankos are fucking awesome. I mean how could you not like them? But it was a completely new crowd to him, a largely new crowd to me, and two introverts don't make a right. He was kind enough to start off our drive to Vegas with including 'N Sync music on his Spotify playlist for the road. Now that's love. And he did the driving which made my would've-been-cramped legs very appreciative. It was early but that avoided most of the traffic and we arrived around noon. Things had already kicked off for many attendees who had been at the hotel for days and there was a cigar social happening by the pool. I didn't get a chance to make it down since I was rushing to take a shower and change before I went to the newbies party with S.

We got ready, I got a brief belt spanking, and we were off to the suite hosting the newbies event. I'm avoiding all names where I didn't directly talk to the person and get an okay to use their name here or are known publicly in the scene so it's going to be a lot of initials. C & S host the newbies party every year and it's a nice way to start off the weekend and meet a few other new people before meeting a LOT more people. I attended it when I came in 2012 and got a look like ''haven't you been here before?" I said I had been once, but was here with S who has never been to any spanking party. I follow rules, I promise I wasn't crashing. I met DS for the first time who I had been talking with online prior to the party. We chatted with a few people, thanked the hosts, and it was time to go to the room and change AGAIN.

Exhibit A
The next event on the agenda was the Uniformed Top event/costume party being hosted in DL's suite, where much of the weekend was taking place. I read something on FetLife beforehand saying that everyone could dress up, not just tops, and figured I could get another use out of a former Halloween costume. For those not sick to death of seeing me dressed as Wonder Woman, see Exhibit A. For anyone who was there, I was the Wonder Woman mostly sitting off the side not talking to anyone. This would become a prevalent theme. But it was nice to have S with me doing the same thing so I wasn't a complete loner.

I did finally see a familiar face when C came to the suite. We had met the previous time I attended and had plans to play at this one. It was fairly crowded and really, really hot which gave me more reasons to not interact or try to initiate anything. In addition to my usual reason which is I hate having to initiate play. It was fun seeing all the different costumes and uniforms around. There were doctors, a fireman, a beekeeper, and even Tinkerbell. I recognized a few faces from FetLife interaction and the previous party. I played with S and we created an impromptu play space with me bending over a chair. He gave me a hard hand spanking. Wish I would've had a pic taken after. I was nicely pink. His hand has come such a long way. I'm so proud. *sniffle*

We left to go back to our room and passed a couple in the hall. The woman complimented my costume, and I said thanks, then the guy said "Wow, she must be like 6'10''!" as if I wasn't standing right there. Just kept walking. You all know how much I love commentary about my abnormal height, especially from complete strangers, so that was fun. I was still eagerly awaiting a car full of friends from CA who were still stuck in traffic going on 7 hours. I'm glad I came from the Salt Lake direction and not L.A. I changed outfits and S and I got dinner at one of the restaurants in the hotel. That hit the spot after not having eaten since 6 that morning.

Exhibit B
Soon after that it was time for the vendor fair in the ballroom. We checked in and got our name tags and S had his attention go right to the tables selling implements. So many pretty things as you'll see in Exhibit B. He bought a leather strap and leather paddle from Miguel, a favorite paddle maker of Ms. M. The basket woven look of the handles is very unique. Miss Rose was there as the face of Compass Rose Creations and had a beautiful selection. He picked a smaller one in bloodwood and the long one made of morado. He's going to need a bigger toy bag soon. :-)

I found many friends down at the vendor fair. I was surprised to run into NJD who I know from SCONY. I hadn't known he would be there so that was one more familiar face. I caught up with my friend A from Texas. We discussed how our CA friends were still stuck in traffic on their way there. I chatted with Alex Reynolds, Erica Scott, and SpankCake who joked that it was the blogger's circle as we were standing there talking. Alex introduced me to Paul Kennedy who was ever so nice. In thinking back on it, I'm kicking myself for not signing up for the British detention event that occurred throughout the weekend.

I left to head to a scene I had planned with B at his room. We had met at the prior SL and had been planning to play this time. I soon had my skirt up, panties down, and was across his lap on the bed. He warmed me up with his hand as we talked about our drives there and caught up with other goings-on. He had me move to stand and bend over a chair while he used some different leather implements. Then I laid across some pillows on the bed as several leather paddles kept the heat on my bottom going. I ended up across his lap again for a final few swats from his hand. Then we finished with a hug.

I went back to the room to find S relaxing. Not long after, I got a text that my CA friends had finally arrived. Almost 11 hours after leaving L.A. Man, I'm glad I don't live out there. How infuriating that would've been. M came to the room and met S and we chatted for a while. We followed her back to their room not far down the hall from us to greet SY and SNJ. SY had actually visited me in Utah about 2 years ago and met my S, but this was his first time meeting everyone else. They were understandably exhausted after the drive in, but we went to check out some of the suite parties. I think we went to every suite that was listed as open. It was actually really cool that at this party somebody had organized everything on an app called Guidebook. You looked up Shadow Lane and had to have a code and then it would list the main activities, times, and suite numbers that were open to everyone. That made it pretty easy to navigate the party.

We checked out one suite and then went to the next. None of us were great at socializing outside of ourselves, but at least we were present. Lol. Even having been before, I find it really hard to break into a circle of friends standing around talking, much less approaching someone to play. I always feel rude and like I'm interrupting. For other shy introverts like myself, I strongly recommend networking online as much as you can ahead of time because it makes that SO much easier. Especially at a party of this size. I recognized so many faces from online but still felt awkward and didn't approach many people. Even ones who have been on my FetLife friends list for years. I definitely missed Joey. He was there the last time and is such a social and friendly personality. It made it really easy for me to just follow him and get to meet everyone we knew from online. Several others said they missed you too, Joey.

At one of the suites I ran into Nancy and Tom who I know from previous parties. Tom and I went to play in one of the bedrooms. He's always a lot of fun and just has this excited and happy to be there vibe all of the time. I went across his lap and he spanked me with his hand. He has one of those stingy hands which I really like. My bottom was plenty warm and stinging as he'd ramp up the intensity, then slow back down, then repeat. He finished with his signature final ten swats (and HE does the counting. Nice!). We hugged and returned to the party. It was getting late at this point and it had been a long day. S and I said our goodnights and went back to the room to crash. My next post will continue with Saturday. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

How To Survive The Community As A Kinky Shy Introvert

I wrote this on Fetlife a few days ago and it's had an overwhelming response after making the Kinky & Popular list. I wanted to share it here as well since some of my blog readers don't frequent Fetlife.

1. You may not want to do it, but do it anyway.

I don't have any secrets or shortcuts to making things easy. It's not easy. Some days it's really fucking hard. Not all introverted people are shy. And not all shy people are introverts. However, I am both. I just won the weirdo lottery I guess. Left handed, spanko, abnormally tall female, shy introvert. Awesome. I'm considered pretty tame by many in the BDSM community, yet would be an outcast and pervert by much of vanilla society's standards.

Talking to people is hard. Putting myself out there is hard. But I do it anyway. (Well, sometimes.) And when I don't do it I know that I only have myself to blame when what I want doesn't happen. You know that quote, "you are not a beautiful and unique snowflake." There are people coming in and out of this community every day. There's nothing about me that will stand out over any other person. Not unless I do something to make people notice me.

It's easier to say "well nobody talked to me there" than to put it on myself to talk to them. It's easier to just stay home than to deal with a big crowd of people where I may have to sit next to, or god forbid talk to, a stranger. I have a hard time finding play partners locally. It's easier to just not play than to have to do the dreaded asking and risk rejection. Easier, yes. Getting me anywhere? No.

For over a year and a half of attending things in the local community I avoided a certain group because you have to stand and say your name for introductions in every class. And do it again should you want to say anything during the class. That probably sounds like a completely ridiculous thing to try so hard to avoid. But I hated the sound of it. And I still hate it. But I go and do it anyway because it's silly to miss out on seeing people and learning things just because of that. Though I do rebel by never asking a question because I don't want to have to do it more than once per class.

I see so many new people posting on here saying they are interested in kink but the pathway to the community by way of munches stops them from getting involved. They are shy. They are socially awkward. They fear being stuck in the middle of a big crowd of strangers with nothing to say. I hear you, people. You are not alone. There are so many of us out here that are the same way. The "fake it til you make it" method is being used ALL the time.

I wish I could say it gets easier, but it may not. Each day can present a new struggle that you just have to push yourself past. Some days you may not be able to do it. But the next day you may. There are still events I'm more likely to attend because I know some of the people there a little better as opposed to the other thing happening on the same day where I'd be alone. I still feel awkward trying to break into a circle of friends to say hello. My heart still thumps when I raise my hand to tell a joke that I hope hits the mark and is worth the anxiety of standing in front of everyone. I do it anyway.