Where Are You Camped


I don’t remember.

I know I am not going to be by Media Mecca this year, but I won’t be too far off, the big Ranger station?  Somewhere along 3:45 and C.

What about you?

When are you going up?

I’ll be getting there August 17th, leaving the Bay on the 16th, staying overnight in Reno, then hitting the playa that Saturday.

Yup.

I was at a Burning Man BBQ today.

It was awesome socks.

I got to go out with an old friend who picked me up from Graceland today and we drove out to Petaluma for the Media Mecca BBQ and gathering.

I saw faces I had not seen since last year’s event and faces I had only connected with via Facecrack, and a few more friends who I had briefly seen at another Burning Man centric back yard bbq my first week back.

It was lovely to catch up, sit in the sun, in the grass, out in the California country.

To watch the fire under the hot tub licking the sides of the big round trough of water up on cinder blocks.

“It’s like a hilly billy hot tub,” my friend noted as I sat snuggling with his “puppy” ( a four-year old Pyrenees Mountain Dog, a dainty 118 lbs) as we watched the host stuff another log into the fire pit underneath the tub.

“It is fucking brilliant,” I said to the host early in the day as he showed me and my friend around the house and the  gardens.

It, the tub in question, was a large round horse trough up on cement blocks over a brick patio.  Underneath the tub, which had just been filled earlier that day with fresh water, was a fire pit.  The host looked at his watch and calculated, staring now, around four pm, the water should be hot enough to climb into by nightfall.

Good thing we left right before nightfall, another event beckoned my ride back to San Francisco, or I would have been cavorting naked in that tub.

And I am not a ready, set, disrobe sort of gal.

I like keeping my clothes on, thank you very much.

“When are the girls going to come out?” My camp mate asked my first year on playa at Burning Man.

“Uh, my girls?  Do you mean my breasts?” I asked a little askance.

“Yeah, aren’t you going to let them come out and play?” He continued.

“No,” I said, “I am not that kind of Burning Man person”.

I never want the playa name “Dusty Tits” frankly or “Dusty Bits” either, for that matter.

I am not a get naked at Burning Man girl.

I don’t ride in Critical Tits, although one year I got inadvertently swept up in the crossfire, I don’t wear sheer items on playa, I just don’t get naked.  Unless it is pre-event and in the dark and out at the hot springs.

I am not a cavorting topless lass.

You perhaps can conclude then, the hot tub, hilly billy or no, was quite alluring.

It was also fun to hear from folks who have seen the Sparks A Burning Man Story, a documentary that was premiered at South By South West and has its West Coast premier this Thursday, June 6th at the Roxie Theater on 16th and Valencia.

“Have you seen the movie yet?” My friend asked.

“No, I have seen the trailer, but not yet the film, I heard the tickets were sold out to the premier, I am bummed I missed getting one, I really want to see it,” I said to my friend.

“The shot of you is pretty spectacular, you look all blissed out and sunshiney and smiley and like you were just dancing your heart out somewhere or having a cosmic moment with the Universe, you know, like you do.” He said with a fond smile on his face.

You know, like you do.

Yeah, I do know.

I do have those moments.

On playa and off, where I let people in and I get a little dreamy and I recite poetry or get transported by music or I get caught up holding someone’s hand and telling a story.

I have not been a lot of places where I am so my authentic self and so guarded at the same time.

“Where’s your Burniform?” My friend questioned me.

I smiled.

I am in it.

My uniform usually consists of tank tops, boy briefs, tights and boots.  I’ll strap on a pair of goggles to my leg, wrap a bandana around my wrist, and maybe another around a boot.  Slap together some sort of belt and carabiner with a water bottle attached to said belt.

That’s it.

I don’t get too fancy, although I do have a crinoline I break out to flounce around in once in a while.

I will certainly flounce in it this year.

“You should see the picture she took of me,” my friend said, “it was hilarious, it is one of my favorites,” he scrolled through his photos on his Iphone.

“Meet clown at 5:15 and esplanade Monday.”

This was written in black sharpie marker on his forearm.

Neither of us knew what to do with that information, but a clown was expecting to be met the next day, that was clear.

It was a day out in the country, short ribs on the grill, smoking fire warming up a cauldron of water, it’s not a Burning Man party without some fire and smoke happening, pitchers of lemonade, watermelon salad, home-made guacamole, one large dog, and lots of stories.

Lots of stories.

I don’t know where I am camped this year, I forgot and my sense of direction is shoddy anyhow, but I do know I will be there and I will have my camera and there will be more stories to be told.

More memories made.

More life experienced.

I am a lucky, lucky, lucky girl.

You can see it in the smile on my face.

And maybe you will, if you managed to get tickets to the movie!

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