Burning Man 2009

I am back from the Playa! [Update: Photos – here!]

Burning Man was an awesome experience, and while I had a lot of fun, I am definitely glad to be back. There was a lot going on prior to the trip, and after about a week taking a mental vacation [No cell phone or internet does wonders!], I am ready to move ahead at full speed. For most of the week, we took things fairly easy. We didn’t try to do everything just because it was there to be done, but just proceeded at a casual pace. We’d take walks or ride our bicycles around when the dust storms weren’t too terrible. At night, we’d go dancing, jump on art cars, hang out at the bars, or check out art installations. We didn’t stay too long after the Burn itself, and I’m actually back a day earlier than originally planned. We were there from the beginning, so it was just time to pack it all up and make the long trek out.

I think that it is a different experience for everyone who attends. You take what you want from it. Some people try to do too much at once and get burnt out pretty quickly. Others undergo some revelation or spiritual experience that they tie to the burning of the Man and of the Temple. For me, the highlight of the week was spending time with RV. Sure, I already see him every day, but I think having to live in Black Rock City for the week, dealing with dust storms, crazy winds, heat of the afternoon, and cold of the night, brings out another side, and it seems that even with those extra colors showing, I like him just the same, if not more…

Other fond memories:

– Art installation hopping. I’m certain that we didn’t see ALL of the art installations, but there are just so many! They pop up all over the Playa at different times; one day all you see is dust, and the next day something amazing is in that very same spot.

– Full moon party on Friday night. That was pretty much the only event that I was adamant about attending all week long. It was a great reminder of all the parties I’d enjoyed in the past, and of course, it always feels awesome when you’re sharing great music with friends and dancing your legs off.

– An older gentleman dressed in a suit and carrying a briefcase approached us and asked if we would like free money. Considering that there is no currency in Black Rock City, we weren’t sure what to expect when he placed into our hands something folded and told us not to open our hands up until he’s at least ten feet away. After waiting for him to step away, we opened up our hands and found in our palms $50 each… :-o

– One event I attended on the Playa involved ripping apart various stuffed animals and sewing them back together in different combinations. What I ended up with was a giraffe with a bear’s body wearing a koala hat. The bear’s body was apparently part of a bear-Minnie Mouse combination from the year before, but the participant’s dog had torn off the head, and so the body was at the event for round two. I rescued a giraffe head after someone else tore off its body, and the koala head was laying around, waiting for its fate as a hat. A little twisted, but still adorable. I think RV was impressed by my sewing skills, and from what I was told later on, my creation was quite the hit! The funniest part was figuring out how to transport the creature home. He was too large to stuff in a bag or use as a bicycle seat, so we strapped him onto RV’s back with a bike lock.

Burning Man

I really enjoyed my first time at Burning Man, and already, RV is planning on what to do for the next. There were certain things we weren’t quite prepared for, but I think being in an RV our first year certainly made things easier on us. We had a default place to go to escape the dust and the heat. Even if we’re in tents next year, we have a better idea of what to expect since we’ve been out there. Heading out there this year was definitely worth the time/money put into it.

Recent 101 in 1001 Accomplishments:
001 – Buy a bicycle. Ride it.
085 – Full moon party for nostalgia’s sake.
090 – Attend Burning Man.

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  • I've heard so many good things about Burning Man! I hope to have a chance to go and once I do, I'm going to jump on it :D I quite like the idea of ripping up stuff toys and making frankenstein animal toys! Cuuuute.

  • I’ve heard so many good things about Burning Man! I hope to have a chance to go and once I do, I’m going to jump on it :D I quite like the idea of ripping up stuff toys and making frankenstein animal toys! Cuuuute.

    • Sinta, I really hope you get to go some time! It is quite a long way to travel, but I think that many people do that. I posted pics of the Frankenstein animal, in case you read this entry before I updated it with photos. :-)

  • We will be riding in style in no time!

  • Awesome! I think the thing about having spiritual revelations isn’t for everyone. I think the most profound thing I noticed about Burning Man was just how much I missed Yayoi! I think that was the first time we had been apart for more than a week since we got married.

    It also has the effect of putting you in harsh conditions with less social constraints, which really turns people into glowing balls of awesome. I mean, there is the crankiness that arises, but it really melts some of the crap away. I talked to some friends more frankly than I had been able to.

    And the art. Oh man, I loved the art. And you can’t do all of burning man. It is IMPOSSIBLE. It’s like trying to see a whole city in a week or less. But that’s part of the fun. Everyone will have a different experience. I mean, last year, there was no moon! And the year before that, a lunar eclipse!

    Anyway, I’m really jazzed you got to go. I really want to take Yayoi next year. I met this one couple last year that had a cafe in a geodome. I think I want to do an izakaya. XD

    And that guy giving away the money, that’s hilarious.

    • I noticed that about communications! I’d get frustrated about something, but it was easier to just bring it up or talk about it. There’s nothing else you can do there anyway. :-) It’ll be interesting to see what the moon is like next year. I was just sooo stoked about the full moon party. Remember the party we went to in the woods back in college? A lunar eclipse would have been amazing to see.

      Izakaya sounds like a great idea. Sake on the playa! :-p You can serve up edamame too. If you go next year, let me know. Maybe we can camp near each other.

  • keaneiscool

    Wow, that's a cool pic of Ryan!

    My favorite line: We didn’t try to do everything just because it was there to be done, but just proceeded at a casual pace.

  • Wow, that’s a cool pic of Ryan!

    My favorite line: We didn’t try to do everything just because it was there to be done, but just proceeded at a casual pace.

  • keaneiscool

    Wow, that's a cool pic of Ryan!

    My favorite line: We didn’t try to do everything just because it was there to be done, but just proceeded at a casual pace.