...Everybody I have spoken to lately doesn't like the direction of perl 6 at all...
Perl 6 is closer to Perl 5 than many people realize. Much of Perl 5 will simply compile on Perl 6 and run. With Parrot under the hood, it will probably run that code a lot faster as well.
Don't let the Apocalypses and the Exegesi fool you into thinking you will have to use all those nifty new features. You won't. You can if you want. "Simple things easy, complicated things possible" (or something like that ;-).