And Like That


It’s the weekend and for the next two weeks I have two, count them two shifts.

That’s it.

My main nanny family is leaving for two weeks.


I “ack” dramatically.

I am not actually all that upset or freaked out or disturbed.

Normally the thought of that much down time would freak me the fuck out.

Perhaps it’s just that I have been doing the daily deal and I got to see Joan last night and I got to see Tami tonight.

My two favorite East Bay ladies.

I met Tami at Burning Man six years ago this upcoming August.

“This will be my 7th year at Burning Man,” I told her this evening as we were saying our goodbyes, she to go have dinner with the hubbie, and I to ride my bike through crack infested waters back to Graceland.

“Holy crow, that is amazing, your commitment,” she replied.

It is amazing when I think about it.

I was thinking about it last night as I was going to bed.

Burning Man is like Christmas to me.

I look forward to it.

I make plans around it.

There is a distinct before, during, and after.

There is always a moment when I think what the hell is all the fuss about?

Then there is always a moment when I realize the magic and fall in love all over again with it and with whomever or whichever self I have brought out there with me.

There’s lots of gift giving.

I get to make gifts and give–time, experience, perspective, hand massage.

I get gifts.

I have gotten to go for airplane rides, have been given beautiful jewelry, I got a therapy session last year in a hammock followed by an awesome make out session (that is what I call doctor/client privilege!).  I have been given access to the inner circle to see the Man burn three times–three!  I have gotten to ride on amazing art cars, been given tremendous hugs, a small ceramic gnome–which I re-gifted a few years ago–upon request–I was given a gorgeous dress makeover last year and wore my party dress to dance like a maniac out in the shadow of the shipwreck ship.

I have been given invaluable life experience, friends, art, love.

Not too shabby.

I have yet to get jaded, although I have my moments, I still believe in playa magic and I am over the moon that I get to be a part of it again this year.

“I can’t wait to see your pictures,” my friend finished our conversation and we shared one last hug good night.

“I can’t wait to take them.” I thought to myself, hopped on my bike and started to the bicycle commute back to East Oakland.

In fact, I think I need to find a battery charger for my rechargeable batteries in my camera, they must be getting low on juice.

Note to self.

There are not many other things I need to pick up, aside from getting to go see my bicycle tomorrow and get the new seat and hopefully the bike basket.  I am super excited to get the saddle.  Maybe if they put it on for me I will just leave my one speed whip at the office on Valencia and ride my playa bike to the house sitting gig–they are my Burning Man family and I can just put my bike in their garage instead of keeping it in my friends garage, get it out of her hair.


Tomorrow I will sleep in, maybe, I always tell myself I will, then I wake up and am up and ready to tackle the day, write, pack my bag for a weekend in the city and take off.

I will inventory what I still need to get as far as stuff to take to playa–not much, really, it’s just about done (extra underwear and bras, if you must know, really that’s about it, I believe), perhaps a new chain for my bicycle as well, last year it fell off a few times and I believe that the master link might be shot.

But for the moment, it just feels like it’s a countdown and all I really need to do is show up for it.

Like everything else in my life, just say yes and show up for it.

Be nice and treat people well, and don’t swear at them and wave to the midget hooker (she was out again this morning! Black leather fringe jacket and the tiniest tightest pair of blue jeans leggings was today’s outfit) and go about my life.

My life.

I have been reflecting on that too, took me almost the entire post to get to this part.

I got a message from Shadrach’s mom today, I sent her a card, I was thinking about her, this was the time of year, I will always think about it as I go to prepare myself for the Burning Man adventure, which I would not have done without his prompting and then the necessity to bring his remains to the Temple.

She sounded good, bright, sweet, Maine accent sharp and peppery and I was going to call her back, but did not.

That is on the list of things to do, the list I don’t always want to do right away, but the list that sits heavy, a crow on a sagging telephone wire, croaking at me to remind me there are people in this world I need to stay connected to.

I could call it an obligation.

But it is not.

It’s just another facet of my life and sometimes I wish to not look back, I want to just look forward, but he’s there, and I still catch myself doing things because, well, you know I can, I am alive and he’s dead.

There is the obligation, if I chose to see it like that, but really there is the gift.

See, it really is like Christmas.

This gift, my friend’s life and times and his family that despite not having seen in a while, are my family too.

And you always go back to the ones you love at Christmas time.


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