This week I think I found the balance of Real Life and WoW that works for me. Due to a limited number of Raid Spots I did not raid this week, I could have, don’t get me wrong. I spent only three nights out of the past seven at the computer. Having four nights free gave me time to spend with my wife. We took a two long rides together on her new snowmobile, spent a night with her family and last night, being Valentines Day, we spent the evening hanging out together without so much as a radio on. I think that there have had so much free time that it has started to annoy Mandy. By now she’s probably wishing for more “ME” time.

Since I haven’t been raiding I spent some time leveling a Mage with a few Real Life Friends. Back when I started playing WoW I played almost exclusively with people I knew in Real Life. The two people who got me into WoW and I created a guild called Benevolent Savages. BS was a mature social guild, we worked together through levels 1-60 playing casually, running instances, and doing teh peeveepee. We picked up the occasional additional player when they showed themselves not to be complete asshats. We even grew to a point where we were considering trying to raid End-Game content. It never worked out for a number of reasons mostly I think it was time. Pre-BC raiding was a very time consuming affair and my friends were truly casual players unwilling to set or keep any type of playing schedule. Eventually, my desire to see end-game content drove me to look for a raiding guild and ultimately I made the difficult decision to leave. Benevolent Savages is all but dead now. People still log on and play from time to time and I still keep all of my alts there, but the life is gone the Guild Chat is silent. It has been a long time since I played with RLers and I forgot how much I miss the ease of camaraderie and the fun of playing with people who you care about. What I miss the most though is probably the lifestyle, sign on anytime day or night, have friends online, play together or just shoot the shit while questing, farming, or whatever. If there were enough people online we’d put an instance run together. If you had to go mid-way through you apologized and left, no problem.

This week for the first time in recent memory I have not let myself feel pressured to be signed in, I played when I wanted to, I’ve spent time with the people I wanted to and have been in bed before 12:30 most every night. It has been nice. I’m the best rested, least stressed I have been in a long time. I’ll probably go back into raiding next week, I am a loot whore after all and besides “Who needs sleep?” but I’ll try to remember the lesson I learned this week maybe take a night off from time to time.