You Are The Poppins


So it was spoken.

So it is.

Out of the mouths of babes.

Today my charge looked at me and said that, “you are the Poppins.”

My eldest charge knows what my playa name is–Poppins.

That’s the G rated version.

My playa name is actually Mary Fucking Poppins, thanks to PQ’s wife who named me that last year about this time as I was planning the return to playa nanny land.

He also knows his playa name, his papa’s and his mama’s and many of the participants that are going or working or camping there.

The little guy has been saying, “we’re going to Burning Man,” quite a bit lately.

He’s again, entirely correct.

We are going to Burning Man.

In 11 days.

Eek.

He was dressed, partially for it today, showing off a pair of grey furry monster slippers with three toes and orange claws.  Way too cute.  He has a bear hat and a raccoon hat, a dragon suit, I saw some face paint at Flax on Saturday, and I am thinking I might have to go get some of that for dressing up on playa–little fox face, little bunny rabbit, or a cat–oh the cute.

He’s also got goggles, a back pack, his own camelbak, and plenty of other gear I haven’t seen yet, but I know is accumulating in neat, tidy piles in the garage.

Which makes me realize, Jesus God, that I am going to unearth my Burning Man boxes this weekend, because, um, when else am I going to pack.  I will have just this last weekend to organize, though I know it’s all going to come together quickly as it usually does.

The trick of it will be working the full week, saying goodbye to my little guy, I am holding off on saying goodbye to my little girl Thursday for a few more days, I got a message from the mom that they could use a little help the week following my return, so I will be seeing her two more times before our end is up, and then getting all my gear over to my family’s home next Thursday.

Or possibly next Wednesday.

I’m not quite sure how I am going to work it.

The mom did offer me use of her vehicle, so I could probably do it all on Wednesday night and live out of my messenger bag for a day or two until we get settled on playa the afternoon of the 16th.

It seems like a lot.

But it will just unfold and unroll and next thing you know I will be taking photographs and watching the sunset kiss the Calico Mountains.

And I got two more things out-of-the-way today, not having planned for either.

First, I got my ticket and early arrival pass.

“Don’t lose it,” the mom said as she handed over the envelope.

Nope.

That would suck.

To get all the way there and suddenly be like, oh, snap, I left my ticket on my table at home in San Francisco.

I did hear of an acquaintance who had to have a friend break into her place in New York and FedEx her ticket to Reno where she drove back to pick it up after having landed at the event and realized just that, she’d left the ticket on her desk at home.

Ack.

No thank you.

I put my ticket, after taking a photograph of it of course, and early arrival pass in the same safe place I put them in last year.  I did not to have taken them out once after they were put into their secret special sauce spot last year and I did not even bother to look until we got to the gate and then I took them out, having just a moment of panic that I had not looked in said secret spot until that moment.

It’s a safe place.

The second thing I got.

My bike!

My playa chopper is ready to roll once again thanks to Tyson at American Cyclery, thanks man, you freaking rock!

He fixed it and it works and hopefully my ankle will work and I will have ready wheels when I arrive.

I had some trepidation to even get on the bike when I picked it up from the shop, I couldn’t bring myself to get on it or even put myself in the saddle.

I had started to limp again about mid afternoon.

The time is getting a little longer, imperceptibly, every day, the time of day when I notice my ankle start to ache is getting just a tiny bit further out into the day.

Tomorrow marks two months from the injury.

Two months not on my bicycle.

Two freaking months.

It’s hard to believe that.

That first month was horror, and I don’t even know how I got through it, well, yes I do, all my amazing friends and family who took care of me, but looking back, it’s a dark blotch on the calendar.

“Are you ready to dance yet?” My friend asked me tonight as I settled into my spot at 7th and Irving.

“Nope,” I sighed, “and I got invited to go dancing twice this past week!”

I am ready to dance, but I am cautious to do much more than tap a foot.

I was listening to some Paul Simon and I wanted to dance around with my boys and I could muster it for a moment or two, but eventually I just sat down and held them alternatively in my lap and bounced a bit to the music.

I miss dancing and exercise, and walking without pain, and my bicycle, but I know I will be back on the dance floor, back out into the world, back in the saddle soon.

The saddle I get on first will most likely be the gigantic white sparkling banana seat on my chopper.  I don’t think I am going to pull out my one speed until after Burning Man.

I don’t want to risk irritating the ankle, I want to be there for my family and on top of my game.  My little guy is more active and it’s going to be an entirely new experience out there with him being so mobile and engaged.

There will be lots of playing and cavorting and hanging out and rides in the red Radio Flyer wagon, and perhaps some bicycle rides, I wouldn’t mind rigging something up so that my bike had a carrier and maybe an umbrella.

Or a parasol.

I am “the POPPINS” after all.

I have a name to uphold.

 

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