A lot of my classmates have written extensively about the workshop part of it, with lots of reflection on how it affected their writing. I'm not so great at testimonials like that, though, so instead, I'm offering something different.
One of the things I didn't realize going into the week was how much laughter there would be. As I re-listen to the lectures I recorded during the week, I am constantly surprised and amused by things that people say. But I know that no matter how much I describe the infectious joy, you won't understand it without seeing it in action. So....
My class included people from various parts of Europe, the USA, and Canada, and every single one of my classmates was a stellar human being. We didn't all agree about everything, but we always found ways to relate to each other. Above, you can see how Viable Paradise encourages excellent foreign relations.
But VP isn't just about synchronized gyrations. There's music, too!
When Sean played "Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian" at the Friday night party, Patrick Nielsen Hayden pulled out the most impressive party trick of the week. He says the playing is uninspired, but the use of his drink as a slide more than makes up for that.
One of my classmates is from Hawaii, and made sure we all knew this song is not at all Hawaiian in any way. Also, I don't know this song, but you can hear me attempting to sing along anyway, because there had been some whiskey, and some of TNH's infamous scurvy cure....
The Friday night party is officially billed as "Teary Farewells" on the VP schedule. While that's mostly false, I can't pretend we weren't all disappointed that it was ending. Leaving the island was one of the sadder things, even though I was looking forward to seeing La Mrowsera after a week away from home. So, to end on, a brief maudlin musical moment:
If you're wondering whether you should apply, I hope this helps you decide. If You're one of the VPXIII classmates, or instructors, or staff members, I'm glad we got to spend that time together. I miss you all.