Oh my God, I'm on line! I can't believe this. We're in the middle of nowhere in the midst of a blinding dust storm on a dark moonless night. It is truly the modern version of the old Wild West. How did they do this? Oh damn, I spoke too soon -- we're down. That was sure exciting though for a minute there.
We're here everybody! We're here. We got in a couple of hours ago. Beau is off riding his bike somewhere out on the playa. He's safe. I'm not worried, and won't start getting Mama-anxious until he's been gone a good while longer. As long as he checks in regularly I trust him and everyone else here pretty-completely.
People are very protective of our kids here and if some odd person messed with him in some way, which would be pretty hard to imagine in this very loving climate, all he'd have to do is call out and he'd have volunteers lined up to help. There's a very powerful community/family-spirit/vibe here and people try to look out for each other. When you see anyone from Burning Man, either on the way to or from Gerlach, they're happy to see you and will give you hugs. It's lovely and heart warming.
Of course now that's it's gotten so damned big, it's not like it was in the old days -- I can't believe we've been around for long enough to have old days -- but people are basically good here. I worry more about accidents at night than anything else, so of course he's well lit. He's got lights on his bike, a powerful headlamp, a flashlight, and assorted blinking things. I gave him a Claritin for the dust, and he's using Ocean salt nasal spray to ward of the bloody noses he's prone to. Keep your fingers crossed for us.
I think he may have gone to some kind of enormous interactive art installation called The Mousetrap. From what I can make of this it's a large scale recreation of the game Mousetrap, and they're having some kind of event there for a couple hours tonight. But he's certain to visit the man, that'll be his first trip, he always loves to do that, "Mom, I've gotta see the man, see the man, see the man...," and if he has the energy he'll ride all the way out to the temple and then swing back through center camp to see the decorations, the art, the people, and whatever performance art is going on there. I have to find our bike locks so we won't suffer any more "disappeared" bikes this year.
I wish I could go with him, but my back did it's valiant best to get my here -- I'm grateful to it for having put up with the sudden intense demands I've placed upon it -- and that's all it can withstand. I'm done for the night. It's spasming and so twisted up that stretching, resting, and my wonderful, microwaveable seed pad that Scotty bought for me, wouldn't do the trick, so I resorted to taking a Valium. I have something stronger, Flexeril, but it knocks me off my feet and leaves me in a stupor the whole next day so I reserve these for extreme muscular emergencies which don't happen more than two or at most three times a year. I've got them with me just in case.
I'm in my bedroom at the back of the RV with the radio I bought especially for Burning Man, tuned to a great, and very local, radio station. It's this alternative country/folk station and I love it, apparently they're streaming, are available on I-Tunes, and there's a podcast as well, but someone else is pumping out some generic trance beats (I actually love trance, it's really cool, and always reminds me of Burning Man, but I found this station and fell in love instantly), and they're crowding my newly discovered station out. I have to get their call letters and address for Scott so he can send them a CD. He has a few songs that I know they'd love. There's another radio station in Nevada City that is really popular with all of the people there and I have to tell him about that one as well. (Scotty, it's KBMR.org, in Nevada City California, call them and send a CD. You'd like them, and there are a lot of people who've moved out here who might hear your music, like it, and be able to help, you never know.) Oh I wish you could hear this station I'm listening to right now, very Songcatcher bluegrass old timey. I love this! Oh cool, they just gave out the name; Boot Licker Radio, it's http://www.bootlickerradio.com, I think. Oh man, this just makes me miss Scott.
I haven't been anywhere other than to visit just a couple of my nearest and dearest long term neighbors and friends here. My favorite people here in our camp are Julia, Jay, and Mark. I've written about them before, but just to recap; Julia and Jay are a deeply loving, and lovable, lesbian couple who are co-parenting Julia's children with Mark. It's very cool how they've handled all of this. Julia didn't come out to herself or anyone else until she was vastly pregnant with her fourth child, darling Anakin, who is old enough now to have blown me away tonight by humming the theme song to Star Wars while playing quite seriously with a light saber. His brother and sisters named him because they were/are big-time Star Wars fans, and now he's just following along in their shoes. Julia and Jay fell in love when she was pregnant and everything kind of fell into place or well, fell apart and then came back together, from there. They are everything you would want in a friend -- wonderful in every way, salt of the Earth in a cool liberal way -- and I adore them. Plus, they are both super attractive -- so in love -- and it's just the dearest thing. I am so happy for them.
I also took some champagne and chocolate to the mayor and will ply him with beer tomorrow. I passed out some light up toys to our neighbors on either side of us. But the best thing I've done so far was to hang out with my dear, dear friends Julia and Jay. Getting to see people you've shared all of this with before is one of the best parts of coming here.
One of the best things about being in Kidsville is, of course, the kids. I love them all so much. It feels so good to just be here and be a Mom on call. When someone falls over and scrapes a knee you can scoop them up and run them over to whoever is parenting them. I love to help, and Lord knows I love kids. They are sooooo sweet and so grateful for anything you give them here. Love, love, love, love, love them! Wait till you see how cute they are with their colored hair and painted faces. I can't wait to pass out all of these fairy wings we bought for them for just ONE DOLLAR a piece, Lord love the Dollar Tree.
Sometimes I wonder if my writing seems odd to people -- the juxtaposition of my sort of normal, dull, agoraphobic, stay-at-home life, mixed in with my compassionate, vegetarian, liberal, all-inclusive world view and politics, and then there's my love of swearing, the belief in freedom of expression, while at the same time wanting to be polite and never offend anyone, sigh, oh me -- the mundane and the profane, and the way I throw the words God and Lord around. I was raised Catholic, even though I think I'm more of a Hindu/Buddhist/something-or-other now. Catholicism was my foundation and while I disagree with some of it, and am feminist, (while still wanting to embrace and protect the rights of men, who -- and this may freak you out -- I feel are becoming emotionally confused, marginalized and made small in some ways), it feels comfortable to me to use these words. I don't want to replace the word God with Goddess. God doesn't have a sex to me, God is just, well, God to me, and it would be silly to say, "Oh Lordyess, or Lordess," although I've started to write WoMan now whenever I feel the need to write, "oh Man," just to be fair to my own sex, but it still feels odd to me.
I've finally given up on this poor radio signal and changed the channel. Damnit, I really loved that, I must remember to go find these people and give them beer and kisses. I don't know what this is yet, but it's good. I bought a new CD/tape-player/radio so I could record some of this. I thought I'd be able to do this last year but my little boom box didn't have the ability to record radio. The music, the DJs, the patter, the stations, are all so good here that I wish I could take them home with me. So this will be my way of keeping a bit of this with me when we leave. I wonder how many little radio stations are broadcasting to us our here. There must be a guide somewhere... Oh if only I could share all of this with you. Ana-honey, and Scotty, you would go mad for this, it's musical anarchy in the best sense. Freedom from corporate politics, music being shared for the love of music. Oh what heaven.
Oh and last but not least I was pleased as Hawaiian punch when we arrived and our mayor handed us not one, but TWO pieces of mail! I've never received mail here before. I wanted to try it but who knew this was possible; mail, on the playa, in the middle of nowhere. Thank you so much Susan and Wanda, they're beautiful and I will treasure them!!!! For anyone else reading these posts, please fell free to comment if you like, and I'll do my best to read them when I can get online longer than the time it takes to try to send these posts out to you. I may not be able to respond, but I'll do my best to catch up when I get home.
Big dusty ever-loving hugs from your friend,