Burning Man Dry Run


Yeah, yeah.

I know.

It’s not Burning Man yet.

But, it’s always Burning Man.


Look at that, insert, thingy here–dress, tutu, pot of lip balm, string of lights, Hello Kitty duct tape, alligator clip, Sigg Bottle, sticker, necklace, boy–all year round, I look about and see things I should have, take, get, to bring with me to Burning Man.

That being said.

I still travel really light.

All things considered.

I don’t have a lot of needs.

Although, I do have wants.

Lots of those.

Want more socks, tights, hair clips, elastics, glittery makeup, coconut body lotion, lip balm in various flavors (strawberry currently rocking my world, Rose Lip Balm, and Philosophy Berry Jam lip gloss), bandanas.

Those are my wants.

All of my needs–water, food, shelter, showers, ticket, transportation to and from the event, early arrival pass–are met.

Since I will be working the event I am taken care of by the family I nanny for.

Yes, if you haven’t followed my blog too closely.

I am a nanny at Burning Man.

I am a nanny in San Francisco who happens to have gotten to work for five different families that work for the Burning Man Organization.

I have nannied for two board members on a part time basis.

I have been a temporary fill in nanny for one of the main art curators and the manager of the art placement team, which includes, the building of the man.

I have nannied for the head of Black Rock Solar and his wife, who was the Communications Manager and wore so many other hats I was never quite sure what her title was, aside from the most amazing multi-tasker I may have ever met.

Currently I nanny for the head of the Human Resources department, the head of the Rangers, and the Placement Team Manager.

That makes it sound like I am juggling a lot of babies.

Truth be told I have three families I currently am employed with, one of whom I only work one day a week with, but yes, I was referred to them by the head of the ticketing team.

So, all things Burning Man.

All the time.

Which is part of the draw for working as a nanny with these families.

They don’t really look twice when I wear full on make up to work or glitter, or got a new pink phone.

Total aside!

I got my new Iphone yesterday, yes, it’s the 5C, so it’s got a colored back panel and yes, it is pink.

If they had it in glitter I would be buying it.

I will still probably get a case, and you betcha, it may glitter yet.

The families are artistic, creative, colorful, musical people.


As I write I just looked up to think a moment of what I wanted to write further and the first thing I see is an aerial photograph taken last year by Will Rogers that was gifted to me by one family, the next thing I see is me and the JuneBug rocking it out in sunglasses and tutus in her dad’s El Camino (the dusty blue one without a front windshield or doors), I look to my right and see a Burning Man Evolution poster from 2009 on my fridge as well as my favorite sticker from last year’s event: “Fuck You It’s Magic”.

I am surrounded.

This will be year number eight in a row.

I have a dear friend who wants me to go and not work it as a nanny and she’s right, at some point I should probably just go to go, but as things unfolded this year, I am working the event again as a nanny.

And I am pleased as punch to be going.

There’s always a moment when I think, how the hell am I going to go next year?

I mean, I’m going, but how’s it possibly going to work out?

Before last year’s event I was in Paris and had no clue how it would work out, that I would be moving back from Paris and yes, working as a nanny again for people who run the event.

I just knew.

I would be going.

The how and the why of it, beyond me.

Always is.

I was informed of my leave date today for the event.

My Thursday girl, who I get to hug and squeeze and squish tomorrow, is going to be heading off to pre-school this fall and as such her parents requested my leave date to Burning Man so they could schedule her care when I leave.

They asked me three weeks ago for the dates.

See, I am not the only one looking ahead.

I had a quick check in with my Burning Man mom this morning before she left for the office about dates.

And it was pretty much what I expected.

I will leave San Francisco the morning of the 16th of August.

That Friday, the 15th, I will finish out my work week at their house in Cole Valley, nanny the evening shift for them so that they may have a diner with friends and do last-minute prep.

Then, in the morning, we will drive out.

We will overnight in Reno and get anything that couldn’t be got in San Francisco, including, a trip to Whole Foods.


The Whole Foods in Reno may be the best and biggest and most amazing Whole Foods I have ever seen in my life.  It is really huge and of course, at that time of year, fully stocked with all things Burning Man.

We have a loose date as the return.

Me, the mom, and my charge will leave a little earlier this year, the dad, Head of Rangers, will stay longer and tend to things the week after the event.

I will be there the week before the event, the week of, and half the week after.

Rather than the full week after like we did last year.

I have not negotiated my ask yet.

And I will need to ask for more than I received last year.

My cost of living expenses are high–last year I wasn’t paying rent when I went to the event, my friend in Oakland was letting me stay at his place free until I was back on my feet.

This year.

Well, there’s a lot more costs–I pay my own health insurance, a monthly scooter payment and I also have scooter insurance now, rent, utilities, my student loan (which was just coming out of forbearance last year) phone.

Ie a lot more going on.

I also have not had a raise in my rate since I first went as a nanny.

Time for a cost of living raise.

I am nervous to ask, but I have to, so I will.

Fear you will not wrangle away my life.

I can’t have it.

I have the weekend to think about it and approach the family and see what can be done.

I also need to know about after Burning Man, I may be looking for employment, I am assuming my eldest charge will be heading off to pre-school soon, he’s of age.

That is a worry I don’t feel like thinking about.


I will contemplate my dry run on the Burning Man event by negotiating my camping for Lighting In a Bottle.

I leave for the festival on Friday at 4:30p.m.

I get done with work at 4p.m.

I will scoot back to my house as quick as possible and have all my things ready to go for pick up–borrowing my housemate’s four man tent, grabbed my sleeping bag, a plastic bin with some clothes, and whatever food I am taking.

I went to Whole Foods and got things that will work, thinking just like Burning Man–Tasty Bites anyone?

I got 3/4s of what I believe I will need to go to the festival packed and ready.

Tomorrow night I will put the last stuff together and be ready to leave come Friday when work is done.

Four day weekend here I come.

Burning Man dry run.

Music, art, friends, camping, dancing under the moon, making out, fingers crossed, socializing, living.

My good, good, good life.

It is awesome.

It is so Burning Man.


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