Posts Tagged ‘playa cruiser’

Virgin Bicycle Run

August 19, 2014

That is my news today.

For the first time since my ankle injury on June 5th I rode a bicycle.

My playa bicycle.

And it was a little rusty and a little scary, but I did it!


The ride was short.

I was looking for friends and either I got the address wrong or they weren’t around the spot there were supposed to be at 8 p.m. this evening.

I suppose it’s the thought that counts and it also speaks to the general chaos that happens out here when you are trying to locate a person, place, or thing, you often get lost, waylaid, bump into someone else, fall into a rabbit hole and you’re suddenly across the playa at a twerking party at HEAT.



That’s happening any minute now.

I was invited, even though I can’t really twerk nor would I if the occasion rose, not my style so much.

I can shake my ass, I just can’t drop it like it’s hot any more.

I might drop it and not be able to pick it back up.

I may dress like a twelve-year-old on a shopping spree at Hot Topic, but my body is that of a 41-year-old woman and there are some things it just doesn’t do so well anymore.

I would go and observe, I really am tempted to see it.

There’s something about the idea of watching a bunch of drunken guys off DPW and Gate crew twerking that arouses every single bone of curiosity in my body, but it’s across the playa and I don’t have bicycle lights on my stead.

I do have lights.

I thought once the sun set and I couldn’t locate the village I was looking for that I would just ride back to camp, hook up my bike lights and head out and take some photographs and see the art as it’s being built up then swing by HEAT and see the boys twerk it out.

I got back and took the lights out of the package and realized that the guy at the store was not joking when he said that it would take about a half hour or so to hook them up.

I got wheel rim lights that roll a pattern and I am quite excited to see how they look–purple and pink hearts spinning around my front wheel, but there’s just not enough light to try to hook up a bicycle light contraption that also has 25 BLACK zip ties.

No way.

I pulled it out look at the instructions and read all sixteen of them and put it away.

I may pull a damsel in distress and find a boy to help me put the lights on my bike.

I am not so mechanically inclined.

I am, however, inclined to have them set up, so that is a must do for tomorrow.

It was a long day, 8a.m. until about 7:30 p.m. with the family.

I did get a break around lunch time, the alternating parents, nanny, and nap time with visits to the Commissary worked well enough today that I was actually able to get in a nap snack.

I didn’t think I would be able to fall asleep, I wasn’t really tired, but when the papa said I could take a little longer as he had a bit of down time before he had to head out to the 2p.m. meeting, I went to the Bambi and looked around my space.

I could read a book.

I could do some writing.

I could lie down and take a nap.

Even if I didn’t sleep it would be rest.


It was too hot to go out and wander playa.

Especially since I discovered that my parasol was broken in transit.

Sad face.

What is a Poppins without a parasol?

I posted a message about having someone bring me one in and got a sweet note from a dear friend that she’ll bring me one, but I may have to scavenge up something before she gets here–this upcoming Saturday–I am going to need one and I know how disoriented I was when I was a virgin getting around, it may take my friend a day or two to find me.


I know the city and I couldn’t find the people I went looking for tonight–despite having visited the camp every single year for the last seven burns–so to expect a virgin burner to locate me in a crowded city for a parasol drop off might be challenging.

Then again, I could get to her where she’s at.



That’s a massive ways a way in the future.

Anything that is outside what I am doing tomorrow is a long ways off and not worth my bother to think about.

The focus for me is to get my bicycle lights on my rig so that I can leave camp and have a vehicle to mosey about in.

I have camped before where I had some limited access to golf carts but despite being right next to a string of them I won’t be getting access for evening joy rides.

I asked last year and got the thumbs down.

I won’t bother to ask this year.

It’s the bike or nothing.

If I go to bed on the early side of town tonight and skip napping during my break, should I get another break, I will take the time to set up the bike lights then.

That way when I get done with my shift I can go out and cruise.

I  will also locate where my people are at and arrange to see them for real tomorrow night.

Then a playa bicycle cruise under the stars with a spinning wheel of hearts to lead the way.

Sounds like a date with Destiny.

I like it.

Anyone care to join me I should be available around 9 p.m. tomorrow evening for a bike ride to deep playa to watch the stars fall down the sky.

I will be lit up and ready to roll.


August 19, 2013

I have a slight headache tonight, which is not unusual, getting adjusted to the altitude change, the dust, the heat.

And the heat was powerful today.

I mean baking hot.

I don’t know if it was just that it was my first full day on playa, but man, it was a scorcher.

The playa is not as empty as a person would think one week before the event is up and going.  There are art installations going in, the man base is being built–it reminds me of a space ship landing, or a UFO, something out of Close Encounters of the Third Kind–I am excited to see the finished project, it is going to be something else.

The Temple is pretty far along and the artist that did Bliss Dance a few years back has a new piece of playa that is stunning and I was able to go take a few photo after sunset.

I wanted to catch the sunset sky, but I just wasn’t able to get going fast enough to do it.

I did go out on my inaugural bike ride this evening after sunset and it was glorious.


Still quite warm out there, surprisingly so.

There was rain off in the distance this evening and lightning, but there does not appear to be any more threat of rain for the rest of the week.

Of course, this is the playa, and it could change on a dime, so don’t quote me, ok, when it down pours on your first day out and you didn’t bring the ‘brolly because I said so.

Bring a ‘brolly anyhow, the sun is brutal.

Heck, I used mine today just to walk over to the port-a-potties, and that was less than five hundred yards.

Shit, I even took a nap today.

I was not planning on it, I just got walloped by the heat.

So I did what you’re supposed to do when it is untenable outside, I laid down in the shade and closed my eyes.

I did not drift off right away, but I did eventually.

The Bambi does not have A/C, just the swamp cooler, which did eventually cool down the space a little, but not until after I had had my nap, it could stand to still cool down, the night is still really warm out there, and lots of wind, but fortunately, no dust.

There aren’t enough folks out here yet to create much of a stir, but they are coming, oh yes they are.

I noticed a distinct change in the up tick in people here just from last night.

I have gotten to see more friends, and tonight I was aboard the Narwhal with my friend Megawatt, it was her birthday, and I gifted her a hand massage and we caught up.

Last I saw her I was on my way to Paris for the rest of my life, forever, and ever, amen.

And now, well, now I am not.

Today’s first day of nannying went well.

My little charge is getting used to being out here, and all the girl attention he is getting, he is such a little flirt!  My gosh, I have had ladies of all ages come over and coo and pinch his cheeks, I am not kidding, he has had his little cheeks pinched a great deal.

We went on a morning constitutional after breakfast and met some of the folks in the neighborhood.

We swung through where the Rangers were hanging and met some friendly folks at medical.

One of whom happened to also be a nanny and she was absolutely astounded that I was out here working as one.

“Girl, you are amazing me, I come out here to get away from my job, you do it out here?” The look of incredulity on her face.

Yup, I do it out here.

We did pretty well, I think.

He is tired faster and hotter quicker, but he loves the little spray mister bottle and make the most soul satisfying “ahhhhh” sound when he gets misted down.

We also had baby spa time after the second nap of the day.

And, yup, it happened.


I fell in love.

I mean, damn it.

I mean, yippee.

I mean.


It happened at his first nap and probably has a lot to do with the fact that I have spent a great deal of time with him these last few days, the scent of him has been flamed into my heart.

We came back after breakfast and he was already pretty punked out, getting to playa, getting settled, sleeping in a new space, he was ready for his first nap of the day far earlier than normal.

I picked him up and read him Where the Wild Things Are and then he laid his head down on my shoulder and I sang him my little lullaby that I sing all my babies when they are going down and I inhaled and it just hit me, I love him!

Like, in love.


It whomped me.

It was like the brick in a velvet glove.

Very unexpected.

I held him and he spread his fingers over the butterflies on my left clavicle and he sighed deep and fell asleep.  I slid him down into the pack and play and he woke up and stood up and look at me with the deepest, wettest, bluest eyes, rimmed with these huge dark lashes and I thought I was going to keel over.

I repeated the whole process, taking him out, rocking him back to sleep and settling him back down.  But once in the bed, I just kept my hand on his back humming my little song and he stayed down.

I sat down and wrote my three morning pages and marvelled that I was here, at the event, doing the nanny.

And now, the jazz is on my player, a little Coleman Hawkins, and I am going to have a slug of sparkling water and sit on the front “lawn” with the mom and one of her team and watch the stars float over the heavens.


Like a Hermit Crab

August 3, 2013

Carrying my life on my back.

I came into the city today to do a nanny gig this evening in the Castro–way up the hill, 19th between Noe and Sanchez.  No way this lady was able to ride all the way up, but the legs got a work out nonetheless.

I also came into the city to take care of my playa bike.

The saddle came in and I had an appointment at the bike shop to switch it out with the old uncomfortable (but quite stylish) saddle.

I would have pictures for you, but I don’t have the USB cable to transfer photographs.

Despite having had a number of weeks now where I go back and forth between the East Bay and all points San Francisco, I still forget some things to bring in the bag.

Or rather, I am trying to conserve as much room as possible and lessen the load by packing as intelligently as I can, which means, don’t bring it if the place you are going to be has it.

Like a towel.

Or a USB cord.

Well, I thought there would be one.

At least this time I had access to a power cord for a little while.  I knew I would not have to bring my laptop charger with me.  But I failed to bring the phone charger off my computer.

Nevertheless I did remember my toothbrush and my toothpaste.

Nothing says I don’t feel comfortable in a place like not having my toothpaste.

If it ain’t Arm & Hammer Baking Soda and Peroxide, well, my mouth just ain’t clean.


Fucking aside.

I just swatted a mosquito.

Where the hell did that come from?

I can’t remember the last time, yes, I can, it was when I lived on Alabama Street so many moons ago, like over 10 years back.


I forget stuff like mosquitos when you live in San Francisco.

They don’t do very well with the damp and cold foggy chilliness.

I am just now drying off as well, once again doused by the sprinkler system along the bike paths in the Panhandle.

I swear to God they are moved directly into the path’s to soak unknowing bicyclists.

At least I saw them coming tonight and I was able to pocket my glasses before getting the full on dousing.  I got hit more tonight then I have before, but made it through.

This blog is sort of bouncing all over, but then again, so has my brain.

I was tied to the shop neighborhood not knowing whether the guys would be able to take care of my bike this afternoon or it would have to wait until later this weekend.

The GM was very sweet and said that I could have the work done there despite it not being one of the shop’s own vehicles.  Along with giving me shop prices for the other things I needed for the bike.

The grips were shot to hell.

Two years on playa and a couple of rough rides too and from the event had eaten up the handgrips.  I swapped them out and since I was putting on a white (GLITTER) striped Fat Banana saddle I decided to keep the thematic along those lines.

New white Oury hand grips.

New white chain (again the playa dust obliterated the old chain).

New silver bell (ditto).

New pennant flag for back bracket (white pole with dark purple flag).

All told, with labor……


Thank you Jeebus.

Er, that’s code, for my old GM’s name.

Sort of.


I also felt like I was having a little carrot dangled in front of me when I had talked with him yesterday, it was mentioned that they were hiring full-time for front of house.

I did not bite.

I am holding out for better pay.

Not from the shop.

Just from the work a day world in general.

I don’t know what it will be.

I don’t know where it will come from.

I may nanny for a long time yet, who knows, but I will make more money.

I do however, always tell folks where I got my bike, I pass out their business cards, and I recommend them to everyone.

I still get stopped on the BART with my bicycle.

I may always.

I do love it.

I love both my bicycles!

I had packed up my bag today not knowing also whether I would have enough time to get the playa cruiser from my friend’s garage, to the bike shop, and then over to Cole Valley to my Burning Man family’s garage and then back to the nanny gig in the Castro.

The timing did not work.

So the bicycle is actually in the design office upstairs from the shop.

When I get done tomorrow afternoon with the nanny here in Cole Valley, I will take a bus over to the shop, leave my one speed here, pick up the playa cruiser (fat white wall tires freshly inflated and up to pressure) and ride it over.

I will drop the cruiser off and pick up my one speed.

It will be one hell of a work out.

But I will get it and it will be one last detail to deal with.


As today marks two weeks til lift off.

I mean count down.

I mean, all systems Burning Man.

I mean, well, you know what I mean.


I think.

I will be off to the great dust bowl in Nevada, my sparkle pony ride all ready to go.

I use “sparkle pony” with a little tongue in cheek.

I mean, I am a sparkle pony, I won’t deny it, but it was also a search engine term someone used in Australia this morning which led them to my blog.

That made me smile.

Almost as much as the new white glitter bomb saddle on my bicycle.

The smile will be at its height, however, when I safely navigate it back over here to Cole Valley.

And with that it’s almost time to hit it.

I have to go sneak upstairs and use the bathroom at the house, I am down in the guest room, and brush my teeth–the family’s asleep and I have been pecking away at the keyboard all clandestine like.

I may have forgotten the USB cord (photos of the fabulous bike tomorrow I promise) but I did not forget the toothpaste.

So fresh and so clean.


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