Posts Tagged ‘Burning Man 2016’

Where Am I?

September 1, 2016

Who am I?

Who is this woman?

Flying up in the sky.

At oh, about 12,500 feet, over the Sierra’s, which let me be frank, was a fuck of  a lot better than how I got over the Sierra’s.

Really, nothing says it’s going to be a long ride to the playa than finding out that the roof on the car that was picking me up was not in working order.

Oh yes.

That’s right.

We drove through the night, in an open top convertible VW Cabriolet.

It was cray cray.

And may I just add.

Hella fucking cold.

I mean, we drove through the mountains at night with the top down.

In the end, it didn’t matter, we got to the playa, albeit once we landed the poor kid’s car got crop dusted with playa from every vehicle driving past.

Who the fuck needed to do dust angels on the playa when we were already covered?

He dropped me, dropped all his clothes, from an untied garbage bag stuffed in his trunk, and once I got all my stuff out of the odd nooks and crannies I had to shove my things into, I gave him a hug, told him to relax and have fun and pointed him in the correct direction.

I have no clue what happened to him.

But I am assured he had enough molly and hits of LSD to make sure it was a fun trip to his side of the playa.

Note to folks.

Don’t tell your ride share that you are carrying drugs on you.

Just don’t.

Discretion is the better part of valor.

Also.

When it’s suggested that you not have your bicycle cover up your license plate or obscure it in any way, really, listen.

OH.

And.

Navigation in certain desolate places in Nevada is not always spot on.

“Don’t turn,” I said loudly, I didn’t holler, I didn’t grab the wheel, but I almost did, he was totally on autopilot listening to his navigation system.

“But the navi says to turn left,” he said in a voice that was young, 23, slightly white male privileged and very naive.

“Honey,” I said in a kind voice, a voice that was beginning to be over being kind as I had talked him out of returning to Reno to buy bell peppers from the Safeway after having a text fight with one of his camp mates all the way past Fernley, “there’s not a road there.”

There was a dirt track leading God only knows where, but it was not leading to Burning Man.

The navigation insisted and for a moment I really thought the kid might just off road it and defy my suggestion.

Fortunately he did not and we got into Gerlach and refueled at the last gas station in town.

Then.

Burning Man.

I should call it “I didn’t get much sleep, man,” I mean really.

I didn’t get a lot of sleep.

I had gotten up on Friday at 7:30 a.m. worked then came home and left for the event and drove through the Sierra’s, remember in a chilly, drafty open roofed car.

Although, I will say it was beautiful, the Milky Way, the dark skies, the stars, the nebula and the two shooting stars I saw, exquisite.

We landed on playa around 3:45 a.m.

After a rather long, protracted grocery stop in Reno, wherein there was much re-packing and re-sorting of the small amount of space in the car.

After getting through Gate, getting the kid’s ticket from Will Call and getting to where I was camped, it was 5 a.m. by the time I had gotten my stuff to my small spot on the playa.

What was fortuitous though, was the sky starting to brighten.

By the time I had my tent up, my bins sorted, and my air mattress inflated, it was already beginning to get hot.

I tried.

Oh.

I tried really hard to lay in my tent on my new blow up mattress, but man, without a shade structure, it was just too hot to sleep.

I got up.

I did shit.

I did eventually take a nap in the communal shade structure and thank God.

I might have cracked.

I only really got emotional once the whole morning, and that was when my air mattress pump died.

I was like.

Fuck me.

It hadn’t held the charge and only blew up my mattress about a quarter of the way.

I was bereft.

Until.

Heh.

The playa doth provide.

A friendly neighbor in camp said, oh go across the street to the Electro Shock Therapy camp, they can help you out.

And help out they did.

It was a solar powered camp that had strips of chargers and before you knew it I had gotten my air mattress blown up, bed made, and was lying in a hot box trying to nap.

I retrieved the item that was to save my life, a black out sleep mask, and found myself reclining in the shade structure.

I got about an hour and a half of sleep.

Enough to get me going again.

I went to a birthday party that night and dressed up and was up until about midnight or 1 a.m.

Most nights I was up about that late and most days I was up by 7 a.m.

One day I was up at 5:15 a.m.

I went to watch the sunrise with some friends from camp on an amazing art car that took us all out to the far reaches of the event at the trash fence.

It was a spectacular sunrise.

And there were beautiful sunsets.

Long bike rides to deep playa.

Crazy conversations struck up out of nowhere.

Running into unexpected friends.

Being told how good it was to see me.

Getting tons of hugs.

But.

No kisses.

No boys.

No hook ups.

I just treated the whole thing like and art and recovery retreat.

It was fantastic though, no matter the  I am tired bit.

I am not spent.

I am happy.

Happy I got to go and got some good photos.

Although I am a little concerned, I’m having some trouble with my regular camera.

I think the dust has finally gotten to it, I’m going to try a few things, but I may have lost some photos.

Such is life.

And I have my memories.

Loads and loads.

And a day to sleep in before I head back into school.

A day to readjust, catch up on the sleep, and um, oh, yeah.

Go see Mike Doughty play.

Nice to be home.

I have no complaints.

Not a one.

I am so very happy.

Yes indeed.

I get to sleep in a dust free bed, I got the playa out of my hair, and I get to see a great musician tomorrow with friends.

Life is lovely.

Nighty night y’all.

I have some much needed beauty rest coming to me.

Sweet dreams my friends.

Sweetest, undusty dreams.

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Holy Shit

August 21, 2016

I’m packed.

I sort of want to throw up in my mouth.

It’s just stuff and things.

I told myself as I looked over the stack.

Three bins, one cooler, one tent, one camp chair, blankets, bedding, pillows.

It doesn’t sound like much.

But it makes enough of a stack that I am a little concerned about my playa ride share.

He’s got a VW Cabriolet.

He’s also picking up food for some of his camp mates plus whatever gear he has and of course water.

I keep envisioning the car already full and there’s no room for my stuff and I’ll have to leave something behind and what the fuck would that be since I have everything I need and want in those bins, clothes, crinolines, boots, tent stakes, work gloves, hammer, lantern, extra batteries, tights galore, bunny slippers, a leopard print coat for night time gamboling.

I need it all.

And I am also still on the look out for a person to bring it all back as well.

I have co-ordinated with the people who are gifting me the airplane ride home, pinch me, it’s still so surreal, and I’ll be meeting them at their camp on Wednesday of the event at noon.

So I’ll need to be all packed down and tidied up by eleven, giving me an hour to get across to them.

It shouldn’t be terribly difficult.

I’ll be camping at 5:40 and Guild with Anonymous Village.

More specifically I’ll be staying with the ladies of the Wolf Pack.

All my things will be staying there to be transported, by whom TBA, including my playa ride, which I will be loaning to a friend who’s going up with her fiancee–it’s his first burn and he doesn’t have a playa ride.

I got some lovely and sweet news today.

My ride will arrive on playa one week from today.

And.

The front fork has been fixed, my tires pumped up, pedals greased, chain greased, and, holy moly talk about service, my bicycle light batteries recharged.

I was just astounded.

Thank you Thumper!!

I have been so blessed with gifts this Burning Man and I haven’t even gotten out there yet, but it does feel like a miraculous thing, this getting out there.

I know I don’t have to worry about my stuff.

It’s all just stuff and things anyhow.

Yet.

I would be upset if it didn’t come home or it was mishandled, but ultimately as long as I get back safe and sound it doesn’t matter about the rest of it.

Sort of.

I would miss my hats and boots and utility belt, my new shoulder harness, my hair flowers and my make up box.

I would miss all my funny knee socks and silly tights.

But ultimately.

I would be ok if somethings went missing.

I repeat.

Luckiest girl in the world.

Ride to the event.

Early Arrival pass.

Fluffing shifts with Media Mecca.

Dusty Family reunion.

Ride home in a Cessna!

I got the low down on that too.

Aside from the meeting the crew, pilot and one other passenger, and getting to the camp by Wednesday noon.

I’ll meet them at their camp which is 7:30 and A at noon with me, myself, and I and one small carry on bag.

They will take me to the airport, load us up and the we fly to Reno, one hour pit stop for refueling and then back into the air, final destination San Carlos airport.

I didn’t even know there’s an airport in San Carlos.

A little secret.

I didn’t even know where the fuck San Carlos was until I googled it.

Heh.

I can BART and MUNI back to my place.

It’ll take about two hours via public transport.

Possibly more.

I may opt for a car.

Not sure yet and I certainly don’t need to figure it out right now.

The plane will be picking up someone in San Carlos and turning right back around.

They could be back in Black Rock City before I even get home!

I am still in shock that I am packed.

Heh.

I still have to re-pack to go back to Glenn Ellen on Monday.

I have been unpacking and repacking my rolling suitcase a lot for the last couple of weeks.

One more go and then I can put it back in the close for a little while.

Such a good little suitcase, it’s been a lot of places-Paris for six months, Rome for a weekend, London for a weekend, New York for two different weekends, Florida twice to see the moms, Anchorage, Alaska, Minneapolis, Madison a couple of times I think, LA, Chicago.

The little suit case that could.

And so many other short little jaunts here and there.

I’m wondering when it’s going to lose the back wheel, it’s starting to wobble a bit, and that will be the end of her, but until then I’ll be hauling it back out for the last week of work before I go to Burning Man.

All the packing.

Whew.

But.

I really am pretty much done.

Today I got the last few things I needed for playa and a couple of household things that I have needed and went around the Haight to peruse the vintage shops and the Burning Man supply stops and you know what I bought?

Post card stamps.

Heh.

I really don’t need anything and though I tried on a bunch of stuff, there really wasn’t a thing that I wanted.

Oh, I had ideas, but they were all thwarted and I realized as I was wandering the foggy street that it was really nice to know I’m prepared and prepped and my food is waiting patiently in my fridge all nice and frozen and really, all I have to do is the next action in front of me.

And it will all happen.

Right on time.

Like it always does.

OH!

The one thing do I need to do, note to self, PRINT OF MY EARLY ARRIVAL PASS.

There.

I will remember that now.

Thanks.

And.

Good night.

xo

 

 

OMFG

August 20, 2016

OHMYFUCKINGGOD.

OHMYFUCKINGGOD.

OHMYMOTHERFUCKINGGOD.

Did I read that right?

I think I had to read the message three times because I couldn’t fucking breathe and then I was on the phone so fast it was ridiculous.

To whit.

The following (with certain bits and pieces deleted for anonymity sake) is the message I received this morning.

(This morning when I woke up mildly anxious to figure out how I was going to get off playa.)

Carmen; This is ______, T’s friend from J’s birthday (leader in _______)
 
T told me that you need a ride back from the playa Wednesday
 
We have a commercial pilot in camp, he is bringing his 3 seater personal Cessna
 
He’s flying out Wednesday to the Bay Area to pick up our camp lead’s son and he has a seat on the plane (only room for a small bag so you’d have to send your stuff home with someone else outside of our camp)
 
wanted to offer you this option as your first playa gift…. call me 123-456-7890 if you are interested ❤
Am I interested?
Oh holy sweet Jesus, of course I’m interested!
I don’t think I have ever gotten on a phone so fucking fast in my life.
It rang through and the next thing you know we are chatting like the old friends, as it turns out, old alumni!
She went to UW Madison like me, graduated a year after me, knew all the old haunts, Essen Haus, Angelic Brewing Company, and had in fact, almost not answered the phone because she thought it might be someone soliciting donations from the UW Alumni fund.
I still have my old 608 number from Wisconsin.
Hehehehe.
It was just the most astounding, amazing, over the top offer.
I can’t freaking believe it was offered, that I was given such a gift.
I’m fucking FLYING back from the Black Rock City Airport to an as of yet undisclosed Bay Area airport.
It’s a small plane, so I don’t believe it can land at SFO.
And frankly, I don’t care, I can get a bus, a train, a Lyft, a ride from so many places once I’m back in the area, I am so not worried about that part.
The only hitch is that I have to get someone to bring my gear back from playa to San Francisco.  It’s not much, but it’s stuff, tent, a few bins, a cooler, my air mattress, a folding camp chair.
I will start putting the feelers out tomorrow.
I just didn’t have the band width to do it today.
It was just a great big day all around.
I couldn’t even post it up to social media for a while because I was afraid the offer might suddenly poof!  Disappear and it was just all a figment of my very fertile imagination.
I told a few friends first.
That was fun.
The first person I told was my friend who happened to have coffee a few days back with the lady who gifted me the ride, she told me what had gone down.
They were talking all things Burning Man and my dear friend (who I happened to meet at Burning Man 9 years ago this burn!) mentioned that I was going and that I had to come back early from the event, Wednesday, to be in the city for my school program and that she had no idea how I was going to manage that.
I wasn’t doing too bad on that front, actually.
I had a friend at school offer to pick me up in Reno and get me back from there if I couldn’t find a ride, she would leave for school a day early–she commutes in from Reno–to get me.
I would just have to figure out how to get off playa, get my gear in someone’s vehicle, and manage to connect somewhere in Reno.
Tough.
But not impossible.
Then of course, the impossible happened.
When I talked with my new friend on the phone, go Badgers!  She told me the story and then said, “well, I knew how you were going to get home,” and that’s when she message me.
She was, I swear, almost as happy to gift it to me as I was to receive the gift.
Although, I feel I might have a little edge on being overwhelmingly happy with the turn of events.
Fuck me.
I’m flying home in a Cessna!
I love airplanes.
I love flying.
I secretly would love an airplane someday.
A pilot’s license would be awesome.
I have been up in airplanes before at Burning Man.
I met and befriend a gentleman who goes be Blind Pilot a few years ago and got to go up not once, but twice in his plane.
The thought of getting to fly all the way back to San Francisco is just amazing to me and feels like the chance of a lifetime.
I told a friend tonight and she freaked out a little, “wear a helmet!”
Giggles.
I’m not scared of flying.
I’m just that type of person.
And if I don’t wear a helmet when I’m riding my one speed whip around San Francisco I certainly don’t expect or plan on wearing one in a plane, regardless of how small it is.
I’m so psyched.
I’m so grateful.
I had these moments today that just blew fairy dust and sugar crystals deep, deep, deep into my heart.
Oh, Burning Man, how do I love thee.
Year ten.
Amazing, that.
It’s going to be short, just a four day shot, but my God, it’s really shaping up to be a fantastic burn.
I have some packing to do this weekend, but I’m ready for it, I have a clear schedule with few responsibilities after having canceled my date (which doesn’t mean I’m not up for a date, I just wasn’t able to quite match the schedule of the person who wanted to see me).
I do have to go back to Glenn Ellen on Monday.
I have the option of going on Sunday night, but I think I’m going to let myself sleep here Sunday night and just get up early and commute to work against the traffic.
It should be easier going out of the city.
Not that I’m even going to bother worrying about that.
It’s Friday.
I’m home for the weekend.
And I got a fucking FLIGHT back from the playa.
Luckiest girl in the world.
For real.

It Took Me A Minute

August 3, 2016

I had to phrase it just so.

I am a little afraid of what is about to happen.

Excited too, though.

Hella excited.

I was given a ticket to the event.

You know, that thing in the desert.

Yeah.

That.

And I am beyond over the moon, I was not expecting it, though it was inferred that it could be a possibility, I bought the ticket knowing that I may have to pay full price and hey, if that’s the price I need to pay to go to the event.

Well.

Fuck it.

I’ll pay.

Things though, they work out.

And I was gifted a ticket.

I can’t describe how I reacted to the e-mail I received other than I made a lot of little high pitched yelping laughs of joy and jumped around my room like a baby kangaroo let out of the pouch for the first time.

I can sell the ticket I have!

I can sell the vehicle pass too!

I was given a pass as well.

The interesting thing is that I didn’t ask, but I did offer, I offered to help where I could, without expectation because I dearly love the event and the people involved, especially in one little nook of the playa and the thought of getting to hang out with them in any capacity makes me glow.

I was texting with a friend from school who has not gone and she doesn’t quite get it.

And.

Well.

Lots of folks don’t quite get it.

Great.

No worries.

I can describe it until I’m blue in the face, I can show pictures, I can express my feelings, I can talk about all the friends that I miss and only see on playa, I can talk about dust storms and white outs and double rainbows and the hot springs and the smash of stars at night and the howling at the sky when the sun sets, but nothing ever compares to the actual experience of going.

And it’s branded on my heart.

It’s imprinted on my soul.

I can’t get it out, that’s playa dust for you.

Once it’s in there it’s pervasive and never leaves.

So yeah, I’ll be at the offices this week helping out with a little project and I am so happy to get to go in and do grunt office work.

It’s sort of stupid.

I mean.

It’s a day off from work, yet, I am choosing, happily to go volunteer some of my time to help out my favorite team.

It just really makes me happy.

I was asked to come in, if I had any free time on Thursday, and the crazy thing is I do.

I don’t normally, I would be at work, but the family I nanny for is out of town and I have the day free.

I figure I’ll get up and do some yoga then go down to the offices in the Mission and hang out with friends all day and do office work.

The things I like to do on my day off.

Heh.

I’m actually really happy to go.

And I am super happy to get to sell this ticket, hopefully make someone happy who wasn’t able to get one in the main sale.

I’m selling it for the same cost as I paid.

$540 gets you the whole shebang–ticket to the event, vehicle pass, taxes paid, etc.

I was nervous to post to social media for a while, I sort of don’t want to deal with it, but after offering it to a few friends I knew might be interested I decided it was time to put it out there.

I was also, heh, nervous about selling it until I had the other ticket in hand, but I’ve looked at the email I got earlier today while I was on my lunch date so many times that I know I’m getting the ticket.

I was going to wait until I had it in my hand but then thought, I could help someone out, maybe someone like me who wanted to go and couldn’t get it together.

I’m not going to price gauge, I’m just asking for exactly what I paid.

Which is basically going to cover the cost of renting a car, gassing said car, and detailing said car when I get back from the playa.

Plus, because I don’t have a credit card.

I have to put a deposit in cash on the car and they take almost a full month to refund that deposit.  It’s a big damn deposit too.

It’s a bit of a pain in the ass, so being able to sell the ticket is going to help me recoup the loss of money from transporting myself up.

And in other news.

I got some more gear in the mail.

Tomorrow I plan on doing a dry run and setting up my tent in the back yard, even though, I hate to admit it, I’m a little intimidated to take it out of it’s neat and tidy little sack and mess it up.

However, I want to make sure that I know how to put it together and I’m going to get rebar to reinforce the tent stakes, so I need to know how many pieces of rebar I need to purchase.

That and some work gloves and I’ll be set.

I’m pretty much ready.

I’ve got cold brewed organic coffee concentrate.

I got my tent.

I got my bed.

I got a car rental.

I got a spare ticket and vehicle pass.

Hit me up love.

Let’s get dusty together!

 

Post Script

The ticket and vehicle pass sold before I even finished the blog.

 

That Uncomfortable Feeling

August 2, 2016

When a stranger walks into your house.

I was like what the fuck?

Is there actually someone coming into my room?

Ah.

The housemate has a guest.

Apparently a nosey guest.

Not exactly how I wanted to find out.

None the less, pretty much the cap on a long strange day.

I got up early to go to work early to let in the housekeeper, the family is away, but there was still plenty on the list for me to do.

Granted.

It’s a lot easier to get shit done when the family is away.

It’s just hella odd.

I realized as I was changing the bedding in the boys rooms, that I have never done house work for a family when they weren’t there.

Either they were there and I was nannying.

Or they were not there, as in vacationing or out of town and I was not there.

It’s a different dynamic and sometimes I find myself taking it for granted and sometimes, well, it’s just fucking weird.

Today it felt weird.

Then again.

Everything feels a little helter skelter right now.

There is a lot happening.

Mostly in my brain.

My brain is a hotbed of activity right now, it won’t turn off.

I also had odd pockets of time today, that did not help, then again, I suppose they did not hinder either.

I found myself having coffee “on the clock” at Ritual while the laundry was working there was not really anything for me to do until it was finished, so I grabbed a coffee at the cafe and worked on my spending plan for August.

Meaning.

I worked on not being in financial insecurity.

I mean.

There’s fear.

There’s always fear.

And I always walk through it.

Sometimes gracefully, sometimes haltingly and stumbling along like a fucking idiot.

But.

I have never been dropped.

And I won’t now.

And I have the money to do that thing in the desert, even though it’s cost a lot more than I have ever spent on it.

I keep telling myself.

I get to go.

I get to go.

I get to go.

And I get to go a little early so I will actually have four and a half days on playa.

Things are falling together as well.

They are.

I have my tent, my camp chair, I got my old quilt from a girlfriend who had it for a while and whom I haven’t seen in so long, it’s rather stupid.

I have my tent.

I am going to give it a shot at getting set up either tomorrow or Wednesday.

Maybe Thursday.

Oh.

Fuck.

I’m nattering on.

I’m nervous about a lunch date I have tomorrow.

I literally had the thought today that I don’t have the right shoes.

Who is this person?

Fuck.

This guy has seen me around.

For a long time.

Like eleven and a half fucking years, the man knows I wear Converse.

Ack.

My brain, on fire.

Put it out.

I don’t have the right clothes either, fyi, that’s already been decided.

Thanks for sharing brain, really.

I have no idea where we’re going for lunch, but I live in the Outer Sunset, it’s not like we going to some fine dining gig on a Tuesday at noon.

Not that I think we’re going to Mickey D’s either.

I have been on a few dates with said gentleman, a few years ago, before I moved to Paris, and the odds are actually not that unusual that he would take me to a nice place.

He’s got good taste.

Chez Spencer before it burned down.

Flour and Water.

Which he was a little abashed to bring me to when he found out I don’t eat flour (or sugar).

I joked it wasn’t like he took me to Vodka and Cocaine.

Heh.

Oh.

Yes.

Also, La Ciccia, which was fantastic.

Plum in Oakland.

Anyway.

So it may be a fancier place, but it doesn’t matter.

I mean.

My brain will try to make it like it does matter.

But really.

All I’m thinking about is.

What will go with the cute sandals I got in New Orleans?

And.

Will he kiss me?

Or is this just a let’s catch up and see how the other person is doing?

But um, Facecrack says he’s single and I’m single and we’ve kissed before and.

Jesus fuck.

I am blushing.

That can stop.

I’ll probably get up and go to yoga so I can calm the fuck down.

Expectations lead to resentment.

I have no expectations.

Yes, some nerves, but really, that’s just that good old mind fuck that says I’m not enough and don’t have the right hair, I mean, um, it’s pink, heh, or the right shoes, I do love my Converse, or the right clothes, I have scads of cute dresses, I just have this idiotic idea that I have to look a certain way for a certain type of guy.

I have too many tattoos.

Actually I have just enough.

Well.

I could use another, who am I fooling?

Really in the end, there is nothing wrong.

I’m excited.

I want to look pretty.

And it will be good to catch up.

I am curious to see what his intentions are though.

I won’t lie.

But regardless, I can comport myself with some decorum.

Unless I’m laughing, then all decorum bets off.

Or.

Well.

I’m just not going to pursue that line of thought.

All the other dates I thought might coalesce this week have not confirmed.

I’m going where the water is warm.

Or.

At least interested.

Or.

Just letting me know there’s a date.

The date got confirmed.

That’s a start.

I’m going to have fun.

I am going to dress how I like to dress.

For me.

Wear my hair the way I like it.

Sing my song of myself.

It’s a good song.

Sexy like.

I get to go on a date.

Fun.

This is fun!

Duh.

I get to do this.

Nerves or not.

I’ll look cute and have an adventure.

Promise to tell  you all about it.

Well.

Maybe.

Heh.

Fluffy, Fluffier, Fluffiest!

July 30, 2016

Fluffer!

I sent out an e-mail to a friend who works at Burning Man.

I asked for some help in regards to my situation and I offered to be of service in return, which is really the only way to go, I don’t expect special treatment, but if I could get what I was asking for it was going to make my Burning Man experience.

In a big fucking way.

And.

I got a positive response.

They needed help and absolutely happy to help with an early arrival pass.

EARLY ARRIVAl.

The only way to arrive.

I may have to wait in a tad of a line at the Gate, that happens, since I’m not arriving super early, but early enough that I am going to be able to enjoy my burn in a way that I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do.

I asked to get a pass in for the 27th.

One day before the event opens, basically, but it’s going to give me a full day and a half to my time at the burn.

I am so happy.

And so happy to help out.

I am going to be a fluffer again for Media Mecca.

It is not what you think, get your mind out of the gutter.

A fluffer is a person who helps get ice and water for the specific team that is busy working their asses off being of service to a specific part of the community.

I have always had special ties to Media Mecca as that is where I was camped my second year on playa, nannying my first playa nanny gig.

Mom ran Media Mecca and I got to see these little bits and pieces of the back end of the event and frankly, it’s fascinating, but then, I was also very new in my experience with Burning Man and really focused on my charge.

I missed so much too.

I was busy working.

And I will work this event too.

But not like I was doing when I was a nanny.

I got asked to do a shift Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of the event.

Which means grabbing up water coolers and hopping in a golf cart and running over to the Commissary and flashing the ice and water pass to the monitor, you bet your ass you got to be credentialed to get ice, it’s gold out in the desert, hello, please.

Then washing out the coolers and getting the requested amount of ice for the area you are fluffing and hauling it back to camp and distributing it where it needs to go.

Done and fucking done.

I love doing it.

It’s pretty simple, it’s an easy way to be of service and it’s a nice little work out too.

Plus, I’m happy to be doing anything at Media Mecca, they are my people.

I’ll get to see people that I only see at Burning Man, from all corners of the world.

I was thinking about next year, actually, yeah I know, I haven’t left for this event yet, but, I won’t have a retreat for school and I will be able to take a full week of vacation time to go to Burning Man and fingers crossed, the start of third year will not be over the Labor Day weekend.

I’d be able to go for a longer stint.

I’d like to do a bigger volunteer effort and work with Media Mecca again.

It feels like home and I know a lot of the team members and the alumni.

Plus.

Well.

Anything to secure me going another year.

I want to help though and doing a service out there really is the way to go and so, I’m so grateful to get to go and help out, I’ll tote some water and haul some ice.

No fucking problem.

Besides, it’s amusing to no end to tell people I’m a fluffer.

The response is hilarious.

And.

And.

And.

This: Dear CARMEN MARTINES,

Thank you for booking your trip with Rentalcars.com!

Yup.

I did it.

I rented a car.

Not a big one, just a little one, I don’t need a truck or van to haul my shit and I realized that instead of trying to figure it out, to put on my big girl pants and just rent a car and drive myself.

In fact.

I’m hella excited to do the drive on my own for the first time ever.

Guess who gets to choose the music.

Me!

Guess who gets to stop where she wants for bevvies and snacks?

Me.

Not that I will be stopping much, aside from gas, for snacks and meals.

I’ll be bringing my own food with me and I may also stock up on the water too before I go.

My plan is a crazy one, but it will be the one to get me the most amount of time at the burn.

I’ll be coming from two weeks of work with my family in Glen Ellen.

They are going to rent me a car for the two weeks I’m with them, so I can come and go and as well as come back to San Francisco the weekend in between.

I’ll be returning the car the evening of the 26th, that is my last Friday with the family.

I’ll get done with work at 6p.m. and drive straight to SFO.

I will drop off that car and go pick up my car.

I will come back here to the house and pack all my things into the car and I will drive through the night to Burning Man.

Hopefully getting there early morning before the heat starts up.

I’ll be tired, but excited, I have already done the trip in one shot three times before, driving straight from San Francisco through the night to the event in Nevada.

It can be done and I will be happy to do it.

As it gives me one full extra day.

I’ll have the early arrival pass, I have a vehicle pass, I have a car (yes, I’ll be getting it cleaned and detailed before I return it, I know what vehicles coming off playa look like and I budgeted that into my travel costs), I have my own tent, a camp chair, a blow up mattress, a cooler, blankets and bedding and pillows, solar lights, and all the costumes and hair flowers a girl could possibly want and a couple of crinolines, goggles, utility belt, tools, harness, and boots.

And heart shaped sunglasses.

Oh.

Ha!

And my bunny slippers.

Adulting.

It’s fucking fun.

Who knew?

I’ll be able to leave the event on my own steam, knowing that I can get back in one straight shot.  I plan on leaving the event on Wednesday, the traffic out will be very, very, very light, which will be super helpful, and I’m hoping to get home late Wednesday night.

Sleep.

Shower.

Clean out the car.

Car wash it.

Return it.

And then go to Mike Doughty that night.

You know what’s funny?

The show is in Burlingame.

Which is, ahem, pretty much right by the airport.

Funny how it all works out when I act in faith.

And the next day?

My first official day of my second year of graduate school.

It’s pretty fucking awesome.

Here’s to be fully self-supporting.

With a little, oh, really, a lot, let’s be honest, help from my friends.

My dear.

Dear.

Dear.

Friends.

See you in the dust!

Faith

July 29, 2016

Lit up with flames on top of it.

Like.

A metal light sculpture– “LIVE” and “DREAM” and “MAGIC” that you see on playa.

Or.

LOVE.

Which is my cover photo on my facecrack page.

It’s a lovely sculpture and it’s the intention I set for myself today in yoga.

Day five in a row, bitches.

I mean.

Yeah.

I am sore, but I also can feel the change in my body and I’m not nearly as sore as I would have thought I would have been if you had told me last week I was going to hit five classes in a row.

Making yoga while the sun shines.

Or.

As may be more apropos.

As the fog, er, lurks?

Lingers?

Muddles across the streets in big billowy clouds of fine white mist that feels like soft snow on my face as I scootered down Lincoln tonight.

No wonder my housemate went to Hawaii.

It’s summer in San Francisco.

Ie, freezing.

Especially out here by the ocean, by the beach, where it just whips in off the ocean and slither slides along the streets on soft cat fog feet.

So yeah.

Yoga, as much as I can get in before I head off into the heart of August when all things get weird and wild.

The days are going to be full and hearty and fast and next thing you know I’ll be in school and so it goes, this life, so big, so fast, so full of well, life.

I’m lucky I know it.

And while I can get in the yoga, I’m going to get it.

I’ll have a few weeks with being out of town, one week retreat, two weeks at work in Glen Ellen, half week at Burning Man.

I do hope that in all those places I will take the time to do my own yoga, to keep myself in the flow, so to speak, and not get rusty, now that I can feel myself getting some momentum with my practice.

Especially after the Facetime call I had this afternoon.

So out of the blue.

So unexpected.

So, very, very, very sweet.

It was from a man I had dated briefly before I moved to Paris, I was quite smitten and had things happened sooner, well, who knows, Paris had to be Paris and it was meant to happen the way it did.

We briefly reconnected when I moved back.

But.

Ships in the night.

And I remember the last time I saw him.

I did not leave it so well, I was a little hurt and I think, no, I know, I had an expectation and I could not say what I wanted to save my life and when he leaned in to kiss me goodnight, I just opened the car door and got out.

There was some conversation before that, but not much, I was not the only person getting a ride home and I was being greedy, I wanted him all to myself.

I so often want it all, all or nothing.

And well.

Ha.

I got the nothing.

I went in my house and didn’t call again and didn’t say why I was hurt and just walked away.

Toward what I thought was the real open door.

Or toward whatever I was thinking I was walking toward.

Fact is.

I was not in the place to be in a relationship with anyone.

I was too unsettled in my life, in my home, in my person, I was still grieving my move back from Paris and I was a wounded little cat that needed to hole up and lick her wounds for a while.

Wounds licked.

Healed.

And forgotten.

Mostly forgotten.

A brief wave from the other side of the window at the Starbucks in Noe Valley a year or so ago.

I remember thinking who is that, why does he look familiar and why is he waving at me.

Oh.

Oh!

I watched him walk across the street with another woman and felt a pang and thought of the dinners we’d had, the kiss under the light at Graceland the ride to the airport, it was he that took me to SFO when I flew to Paris.

The last goodbye.

The heartache.

I remember I wrote a blog about it while I was on the plane somewhere over the Atlantic, my heart on fire and my words slipping on the keyboard like tears sliding down my cheeks.

All those things in a flash.

Standing on the corner of Valencia and 24th.

I had pulled out my phone and saw that I had missed a facetime call.

I didn’t recognize the name.

I mean.

I did.

It tugged at me, but I couldn’t place it.

It was also an abbreviated name, first initial and last name smashed together and I just had this moment.

Call it back now.

I did.

And whoa.

Hello.

I was so surprised.

In a very good way.

We caught up and made plans to see each other Tuesday.

I have off Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday next week.

“I’ll be in yoga in the morning, but I’ll be free by noon,” I said.

“What kind of yoga,” he asked.

“Vinyasa,” I replied.

“Me too!” He exclaimed, “before you know it we’ll be doing yoga together.”

You know what?

That sounds pretty freaking fantastic.

I say this after watching a few couples now at the studio over the last few weeks, a boyfriend/girlfriend couple and a few couples that were married and it was really intriguing to see the dynamic and the play of the relationship in the studio, I found myself thinking, wow, I’d love to do yoga with a boyfriend.

Who am I?

Who the fuck am I becoming?!

I don’t know.

But you know what?

I kind of like it.

Ha.

You know what else I like?

Putting on my big girl pants and researching renting a car to go to Burning Man.

Because I am over the anxiety of trying to figure out how to get there and back.

I priced it out and sure, yes, it’s more than I want to spend, can’t I just get in for free, fuck, just fly me out in a private helicopter, but there’s this idea of being radically self-sufficient really running a line in my heart right now, and I thought, fuck, I have gone to the event 9 times now, this is number ten, what would it look like if I just drove up and back on my own?

I wouldn’t be stressed.

I could leave when I wanted to.

I can go when I want to.

I could.

I can.

I will.

I get paid tomorrow and after I pay rent, yes, I think I will be renting a car for the event.

But before all that.

Yes.

Yoga.

Because.

Hashtag.

Yoga.

 

 

Have You Hugged Your

July 28, 2016

Tent today?

I have.

OMG.

It was hilarious.

I mean.

I should really be video taping myself unboxing my things for Burning Man.

Right now.

I am rocking out my new bunny slippers.

Oh yes.

Giant white fluffy bunny slippers with little black eyes and pink ears and pink noses and yes, little whiskers.

Totes adorbs.

I know I’m a 43 year old woman.

Fuck off.

Hahahahahaha.

Besides, having slippers in the morning is so very nice, a trip to the port-o-potties in slippers is so much nicer and there’s just something so je ne c’est quoi about wearing fluffy animal slippers on playa.

It’s just the thing to do.

And in the mean time, my toes are cozy.

Because it’s July and it’s fucking cold ass fuck out here.

Cold.

Foggy.

Did I mention it’s cold?

I mean.

REALLY.

Cold.

Turn on the heat as soon as I walk in the door cold.

Fog city baby.

So.

It’s something grand to have new slippers on my toes.

Oh, and heh, the bunny slippers have little cotton tail too.

I’m going to barf with joy.

Bwahahahaaha.

If I can’t laugh at myself than I don’t what to do.

Life is full and funny and awesome and has a few bunnies in it.

The way it should be, you know.

And.

A new tent.

That’s right, got off track with glee over my bunny clad tootsies, my new tent, my first brand new tent for the event.

I have had a tent before, bought it off a sidewalk sale in the Mission my second burn, way before the Mission was too gentrified to get a good deal at a junk sale.

Now it feels like things are very much geared to the tourists and the guided walks and the junk sales have gone the way of many, many small treasures and experiences that I used to have in the Mission.

Oh.

There is still magic, it’s just gone a bit underground.

Anyway.

I digress.

I got my tent in the post last night, but did not open it as I had other things on my plate to deal with, but I did today before work.

I also yoga’d it up today.

Four days in a row.

I’m making yoga while the sunshines.

Er.

While the fog lasts?

Hmmm.

Yeah.

I’ve got this week and next week with a very open work schedule and I have been able to get myself to class every morning this week before work.

Granted I’m sore as fuck.

But I can see some benefits, I’m moving better, I feel stronger, my head is not as loud, and it’s nice to feel stretchy.

Plus the next month will get crazy after the first week of August and I’ll be out of town a lot with work and school and Burning Man, so might as well get it now while I can.

When I got back to the house after yoga I had a nice hot shower, ate some breakfast, and made some coffee and wrote for awhile.

Then.

I ran up to Other Avenues and bought a few groceries, re-upped the coffee supply and hit the nectarines.

God damn I love a good nectarine, but crunchy like, I like them crisp.

The market had some nice ones and I chatted with my mom while I was picking through the fruit.

I updated her on the rest of my comings and goings and the eminent start to my second year of graduate school, then got back to the house.

And.

I was ready.

I had the time.

I am good at delaying for some gratification.

Ahem.

But.

I could only wait so long.

I opened the box and pulled it out.

It has an awesome carrying case and it’s exactly what I was hoping for.

I smiled and yes, I totally hugged it to my chest.

I was very happy.

Granted.

Yes.

I will have to supplement the posts for rebar, regular tent stakes do not hold up in the winds of Burning Man.

You got to have rebar if you’re going to tent it.

And I am tenting it this year.

But, I got my tent!

I am also back to square one looking for a ride.

The ride I had tentatively found on Saturday is not certain when he will be going up, plans seem to be changing and he may not go up until the Wednesday of the event.

And well.

Fuck.

That’s not going to work for me.

I need to come back that Wednesday.

Granted I don’t have to leave right away Wednesday, but I really want to be back in the city by Wednesday night so that I have a day to decompress and shower off the dust and get my shit together for school and since I have the tickets to go see Mike Doughty play.

Which I’m not going to miss.

Too many friends going, and one of them, well, it’s her birthday, I sort of really have to be there.

And, you know, I want to see Doughty play.

It’s going to be hella intimate, and small and that is just the experience I want to have.

And then it’s school the next day.

Oh all the things.

But.

At least I’m prepared.

I just have to get from here to there and back again.

I have a ride to and from my school retreat.

I confirmed with the family that they will be renting me a car for the two weeks that I’m working for them in Glen Ellen, so I will be able to get out and do the deal in Sonoma or Petaluma if I need to, and I’ll be able to come back to SF the weekend in between the two weeks.

That’s going to be a nice little perk.

Having a car for a weekend.

Not that I will have to do any more Burning Man prep at that point, but you never know.

I’ll be coming back into the city the night of the 26th and returning the rental car and all fingers, toes and other body parts crossed, I will be leaving the next morning for the playa.

Again.

No clue how I am getting there and back.

But.

It really is all falling into place.

I mean.

Hello.

A new tent.

And.

Bunny slippers?

Please.

I got my ticket.

I am so ready to burn.

Bring it the fuck on.

Seriously.

It’s An Inside Job

July 27, 2016

In more ways than one.

Ah.

Life, just keeps showing up and saying hey, here’s something else to experience.

I didn’t get outside today at work and I was wondering why I felt wonky by mid-shift, oh yeah, I haven’t left the house.

Once.

It’s a really challenging thing for me to not get outside during my work day.

Especially when it’s beautiful out and the skies are blue and the sun is shining.

I actually felt a little physical pang as I realized that I was’t going to be able to leave the house today, it was so pretty out.

Not so much out here in the wilderness of fog and chilly air.

It was foggy when I left for work.

It was foggy and dreary and cold coming home.

At least there was yoga before work and I knew, I had a feeling, that I might be getting stuck inside and to let it happen and roll with it.

I’m going to have some spare time from work next week and if this is how it’s playing out this week, fine.

Summers are strange.

Not just weather wise.

I love it when folks on social media are all like, global warning, gah!

Yes.

There is undoubtedly global warming, I’m no rocket scientist, but I can see that weather has changed a lot even since I was a kid, but hey, folks, this is San Francisco, it’s July, it’s foggy.

Stop acting all shocked and layer up.

Nothing says “local” like layers.

Today I had on a tank top, a blouse, a cardigan, and a hoodie.

Most of the day I was in the cardigan, but the hoodie came in handy and I could have worn something even heavier for the ride home as it was so cold, damp, foggy, and dreary.

I did have a motorcycle jacket on over all of that.

Thank God.

I love this jacket.

It’s padded, like armor padded, in the back, shoulders, and elbows, it’s a little stiff, but I don’t need it to be flexible.

It’s also a serious wind breaker and water proof.

I rarely ride without it on and I have it with me at all times on the scooter.

Because even if it is hot enough during the day to ride without it, which it rarely is, it will get cold at night and I will want it for the long ride home.

Speaking of the long road home.

A dear friend offered me her place over the weekend in the Mission.

I’m contemplating it, if only to get out of the fog and have some sunshine on me all weekend, that and they have a big clawfoot bathtub.

However.

I have a lot going on this weekend, doing the deal with a couple of ladies, going to do the deal with my person, going to a 40th birthday party, in 50s housewife drag, taking the American Red Cross class to get re-certified in child/infant CPR and first aid, going to Oakland for a housewarming party…

If  I didn’t have life responsibilities right now it would probably happen.

But.

I think I’m probably going to stay out here in the fog belt.

Yoga.

It’s just down the block and having all my things in one spot is a nice thing.

Plus.

Well.

I am a creature of habit and of comfort.

I have all my creature comforts right here.

Though it is tempting.

It would be a little like being off the grid.

Well.

Not really.

But it would be different and sometimes a change of scenery is good for me.

Hmmm.

I’ll be sleeping on this, my friend said I didn’t need to get back to her right away, so I can ponder a bit longer.

I’m sure I’ll have more time to think about things tomorrow.

It’s most likely going to be a repeat of today and so forth through the week.

On one hand it is a challenge.

On the other hand.

I do get to go to yoga before work.

The boys are in summer camp this week and I am not at work until 1 p.m.

So I have been getting up and going to yoga before work.

Which is the nice part.

If I was working the 10a.m.-6p.m. shift that is the “normal” for the summer, I’d be unable to get to the morning yoga class before work.

Of course, I just reflected, after this week, nothing will be normal for the next month.

The family being out of town next week.

Then I will have my retreat for school.

Then the family will be in Sonoma, at Glen Ellen for two weeks and I’ll be working overnights there until I go to Burning Man.

Then school that next weekend.

Then the boys are in school and my schedule will be 1-8p.m. again.

I’m just going to easy does it through this week.

Get out and see my people after work and do yoga before work and it will all fall into place without me fretting.

And hopefully there will be outside time for me, even if it’s just a run to Lucca’s to pick up cold cuts or to the cleaners to drop off mending.

My life is pretty full and wonderful.

All the things they be happening.

And!

I got my tent in the post today.

It was leaned up against my door when I got home.

I’m thinking I’ll set it up in the back yard sometime next week when I’m not working.

I can do a dry run and see how it works and figure out how many rebar stakes I will need to get from the hardware store.

It’s going to be fun coming home from work every night to the packages of camping gear and Burning Man supplies.

Which reminds me.

Time to check in on that possible ride.

The ride share board via Burning Man hasn’t yielded results.

Yet.

I have faith.

I have hope.

I know it will happen.

It always does.

It really.

Really.

Does.

Just one little action at a time.

They will add up.

And the results?

Well.

They’re not mine.

Never have been.

Never will.

And always.

I mean.

Always.

Better than anything I could have planned for myself.

Seriously.

 

Fully Self-Supporting

July 25, 2016

AKA.

Motherfucking adulting.

I did it.

I just bit the bullet, had some faith, looked over the facts and decided it was time to put on my big girl pants and grow the fuck up.

I bought my shit for Burning Man.

Enough with the asking all my friends who aren’t going or who might not go if they have spare gear.

It’s about time I had the essentials.

I know I will be going to Burning Man again after this year, sort of in my blood you know, and I might as well have my own solar shower and blow up mattress.

And.

A tent.

Camp pillows, since I’m not sacrificing the ones on my bed.

No way, no how.

An extra storage bin since I think I had one go kaput last burn.

A small cutting board.

A folding camp chair.

Tennis balls (Hello Kitty pink tennis balls!) for capping rebar stakes on my tent–a four man tipi canvas tent.  Rebar I didn’t order online, I’ll go to a hard ware store or Home Depot and get six maybe eight lengths of 12″ rebar to stake my tent to.  Then I’ll slice open the tennis balls and cap the ends of the rebar, one walking into rebar in the middle of the night on the way to the potty scar on my leg is enough.

Some more bike lights.

Because one really can’t have enough of the blinky blink on your bike, it’s nice to be seen and they’re also handy for when you’ve parked the bike and wandered off to explore and holy shit there’s a hundred bikes here, where’s mine?

Which is also why I have a pennant flag on the back of my bike as well.

A head lamp.

Yeah.

I finally have succumbed.  I have never had a head lamp and inevitably at some point I think to myself, why didn’t I get a head lamp, it would so come in handy at this moment while I’m looking for something in the dark and second guessing what bin I put what in.

A flash light.

A Hello Kitty flashlight.

Because.

Hello Kitty.

Duh.

And last but not least.

A pair of bunny slippers.

Because.

Bunny slippers.

Hello.

There was this moment today when I was doing my morning writing, after having done my morning yoga and hot shower, and now here’s breakfast and coffee.

When I realized.

You know, Martines, you could do this thing without having to beg, borrow, or steal your friends stuff.

You could oh, say, have faith that you have enough.

I have begun having nightmares about my financial aid package from school and not being able to afford my next year of grad school.

Which is just baloney.

And the $500 I dropped on supplies will be only a teeny tiny drop in the bucket should  I not get the aid package I’m counting on.

Anyway.

It’s all fucking fear and fear ends up driving too many of my decisions and I realized that I had to let go to get moving on and allow myself to take care of myself.

I can do this.

I know what to get, I know what to bring, I know what I need to have and what is nice to have.

I also sat down and actually read the survival guide.

I haven’t done that in years.

In fact, I have not been given a survival guide in years, as I have worked and usually what I get is the ticket handed to me, which is a gift, but I have’t had a survival guide in the last five years or a What, Where, When.

I’m getting all the goodies this year.

I’m a tourist yo.

That’s not to say I won’t be of service.

I will.

I will do all the things and bring my best self and not have expectations about what I can get from the event, but what can I bring, what can I contribute?

If I go into it with that mental attitude I know I will have a great experience.

And being beholden to no one for their gear, not responsible for making sure I don’t wreck it or break it or give it back so dusty they sneeze for the next year.

Nope.

All my own stuff.

All my own responsibility.

Oh.

That’s not to say I don’t still need help.

I do.

I do.

I need to find out if the possible ride offer up is an actual thing that could happen.

I need to find a ride back as well.

To that end I posted on the Burning Man ride board this evening after dinner before I went out to do the deal.

Taking action.

Letting go of the results.

I mean.

I’m going.

Even if I don’t have a secured ride back.

I’m going.

I’ll get back.

Just like I will get there.

I also figured out my food plan for the event and actually prepped and froze half of my meals.

I am going pretty basic and simple and I can eat it cold or heat it up if I want to.

I’m having the same thing all four days, makes it simple for me, I don’t bore easily and I make tasty food, I’m also a creature of habit with my food and that helps to no end.

Breakfast will be a serving of Uncle Sam Flax cereal–which is basically just toasted unground golden flax–as well as some raw almonds, and a cut up apple with sea salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon, as well as some unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

Lunch and dinner will be the same thing: Italian vegetable and ground chicken stew with turmeric and Italian herbed brown rice.  The stew is made from sauteed onions, garlic, ground chicken meat, sliced black olives, mushrooms, zucchini, roasted white corn with sun dried tomatoes, and a large can of crushed organic tomatoes, sea salt, pepper, oregano, basil.  I mixed in the herbed brown rice with the stew and put it up in single serving containers in my freezer.

I’ll pull one out of the cooler in the morning to thaw and that will be lunch, and then leave one out for dinner.  They’ll also act as ice for any bevvies I want to keep cool.

This meal will be accompanied by raw carrots and sea salt and an apple for dessert.

My evening snack: raw almonds, 1/2 an oz, and 1 apple.

Done, done, done, and super freaking easy.

I also ordered some cold brewed organic coffee concentrate.

Iced coffees with unsweetened vanilla almond milk.

All day long bitches.

Aside from that.

I need a pair of aviator sunglasses.

I’m not taking my retarded expensive prescription sunglasses to Burning Man.

No fucking way.

A $20 pair or two of aviator’s and the rebar and maybe some work gloves.

Actually.

Definitely some work gloves.

So what I have left is a run to Cole Valley Hardware for rebar and work gloves.

Sunglasses I can get anywhere.

Message my friend who has my old quilt, that’s my bedding, plus the set of cheap sheets I got for the air mattress and a couple of fuzzy throws I have.

And maybe my hot pink bunny pillow.

Because.

Pink bunny.

Ah, Burning Man.

Where I can be tough and capable and fully self-supporting.

And.

Also wear hot pink glitter lipgloss and have bunny slippers.

Something for all the parts of me that need to be expressed.

Self-reliance.

And.

Sparkle pony.

The man burns in 40 days!

Not that I’ll be there for the burn.

But whatever.

I’m set.

Seriously.

Luckiest girl in the world.

 


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