My wife wonders why I post my status on Facebook as much as I do. She tends to think that I am doing this so that others know what I'm doing. In truth, I post as often and as mundanely as I do so I have a record, a map of where I've been and when, it's my Hansel and Gretel breadcrumbs. I have been too reliant on this, I do concede.
Without this modern contrivance, being unplugged, well lets just say, time blurred.
I don't sleep much in general, in the default world. Throw in some adrenaline and Playa dust and I can go for hours and then down and then back up and I lose the loose grip on time that I might have when time matters less.
Ironically when it comes to work and needing to be mindful of time, I don't really need a watch. I would play a game to see how well I knew what time it was and I could call it within a matter of minutes.
Time blurred, dust whirled, and....
I have partied hard in the desert before and she is unforgiving.
I have suffered hang-overs in the desert more times than I would care to remember, which for a sane person would be once or twice, for me it ranks in the dozens and that was long before I had ever heard of Burning Man, in fact it was before I could legally drink.
Not only do you suffer, but it stretches the day out, it messes with time.
On day Three, I think, I found myself out near the perimeter waiting for sunrise. I had stumbled upon an art piece in the deep Playa that spoke to me and now I had some time before the sun would wake Black Rock City, so I parked my bike and tried to put into chronological order my Burning Man experience.
I didn't fare well in that endeavor.
Today when I started sorting out this entry I was reminded of a book that way back in my life had a profound effect and Burning Man flows with it.
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
I hadn't thought of the book in ages and today when reflecting back on my time on the Playa, the book and its effect on me came flooding back.
I read quotes today that hit me hard twenty plus years ago and now ring and rattle with my Burning Man experience.
“There is always something left to love.”
“It's enough for me to be sure that you and I exist at this moment.”
“and both of them remained floating in an empty universe where the only everyday & eternal reality was love...”
“...time was not passing...it was turning in a circle...”
“Thus they went on living in a reality that was slipping away, momentarily captured by words, but which would escape irremediably when they forgot the values of the written letters.”
And more and more and ........
I brought my Unicorn mask and crazy morph-suit, but never took them out to play.
In part because there was nothing unusual about having a mad unicorn crush out in BRC. Unicorns of every size and variety paraded and pranced about the Playa.
And my unicorn fetish was very specific to a Unicorn in a unitard, riding a unicycle at Universal. And because I had not got my unicycle skills up to par, the entire thing needed to be put on the back burner.
That said I was still unicorn curious.
We See What We Want
From far away I saw this giant and yet pretty sad looking unicorn with a limp horn seated forlornly on the Playa floor.
Upon closer inspection.....
I knew that I had seen this Unicorn art car before and I was determined to catch this elusive mythical steed on camera.
To do so I would need a long exposure when the thing wasn't flying across the Playa.
So I had to be patient.
She stopped to unload and went dark and then...
My best marathon time was in Death Valley. It was my most surreal marathon to date. There were times when I could see no one else on the course. I was running alone in the middle of nowhere on what felt like the surface of the moon.
The deep Playa brought back those magical memories of smallness and insignificance that humbled and strengthened me.
Burning Man confuses to a logical end.