Posts Tagged ‘Playa dust’

Dust gets in my eyes

December 5, 2010

Like miniature universes of sun rays filled with sparkling dust, something caught my eye in the thumbnail picture – playa dust dancing in the light of the monitor?  We wrote and spoke Playa speak – love, acceptance, forgiveness, journeys, fear; and love as an answer, a path, the only way.  It felt solid and familiar yet new, I think it was a past or future life connection, future most likely, because with a few words written and perceived two different ways – one full of love and positivity, the other full of judgment and negativity, we cut each other off. One person said the other knew too much, that other person apologized and asked to start over but it ended impulsively and randomly and for as little reason as do many things. Damn the fear. Fear kills. I still feel sad but at the same time acknowledge that its duration was probably simply perfect, what other way is there?  Maybe next time around, I say to myself.

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Dust looks good on you

September 23, 2010

At least as many words have been written as alkali particles riding the wind; as many photos taken as total playa residents, times 10,000, yet I want to add my words because it’s now my experience too.

In the last couple of weeks I’ve watched so many Burning Man videos with urgency, excitement and a permanent smile stretching my facial muscles. Now I find myself backing away from others’ experiences – I believe it now, I was there and want to look at and think about my own.

I’m attempting my wrap-up piece, although the much repeated and very sensible three week mark hasn’t passed yet. And I in no way believe this is the end of what I’ll write, it’s just for now. I want to preserve both my fleeting and lasting impressions and like a prehistoric short-lived dragonfly, retain my perceptions, of now, in ancient amber.

By this time, you probably know about the dust angels, ringing the bell, fire and the surreal dark streets that become so familiar you ache for them when it’s over. You know men wear skirts and women wear pasties or more and less.  You know you need a lot of water and ride your bike everywhere. You know how gorgeous and other worldly the Black Rock Desert is.

By now you know there are never ending street performances,some elaborate, some as simple as people walking or riding through the streets and playa;  dances, art structures, surreal vehicles, parties, new people to meet and meditations that come upon you as quickly as a dust storm.  You know the day is fantastic and the nights are magical. There is time with friends and time alone, music, connections, glances, greetings, sharing, hugs, kisses, laughter and tears. Hours both race by and linger on the tongue like pear vodka.

You know about the art that emerges from minds so open and free of borders, that to see the pieces, in this arid, humbling and bewitching place is to feel your own boundaries moving back if not completely dissolving. And that evanescing of perimeters seems to make possessing, permissions and judgments actions of somewhere long ago and far away; replaced with giving, receiving, acceptance, support, joy, love, power and release. That’s what my first Burning Man was for me.

At first I was anxious to live with campmates, would I fit in and do it right? Would I be overly cautious about being vulnerable? A wise friend said I chose to be vulnerable there, in what was a safe place for me which helped me heal, since that choice was taken from me, before. I felt I grew as expansive as the playa, in no way reaching a limit to possibilities and opportunities.

Sunday morning I wrote fragments in my journal, sitting in a small temple with my three camp amigas. Two had just become engaged at the larger temple. The wind was rushing across the playa, the air was white with dust; it was beautiful, and quieter as many people had all ready left.

I wrote words to the effect that I wanted the wind to drive everything constricting and negative from me and I saw my bones white and clean. The wind makes every structure a musical instrument and I imagined myself as one.

I wrote “I choose” several times. All week, the words sensuality, empowerment, receiving and love appeared on the pages.

Outward signs of freedom like sexy costumes, sexy clothes, few or no clothes, art designed for people to touch, write on, climb and sit with; music, music, music; then nature – desert sun, gusting wind and stinging sand; the triumphant dust you grow to love; heat, cold, fire, stars and rainbows; the city – so much to see and do you never see it all; you can’t meet everyone; you sleep little yet the perfect amount of time – it all brews into an unmitigated glamour you wear like skin that rewires your brain and swells your heart.

Virgin no more and looking forward with joy to next year.

Pee funnels and thighs of steel

August 11, 2010

Wednesday, August 11

My actual inventory is growing, I have purchased: huge tub of flushable wipes, 2 feet ziplock bags, a bike lock, goggles (nothing fancy), dust masks, flashlights, a couple great rings, and the best hat ever –the huge sun hat I’ve been lusting for, for so long.

Still need some funky clothes, the funnel and container, bike adornments…I’m getting there. Where is there? For a virgin, it’s like going to the moon. What am I heading towards?

I just read in John Curley’s blog how the playa conditions are crunchy and it’s windy and white. What am I expecting? I’m simply expecting to deal with whatever it is.I want to be enthralled by works of art I couldn’t have conceived, I want to ride my bike, I want to feel good, I want to rest and chill out if I feel like it and not feel pressured to be anything other than I am. I want to just be and accept whatever white and wind and dust comes my way, and say, cool, now I’ll do this…

I want to journal and look and gawp and think and not think.

Do only virgins get this nervous? Why do I feel it’s so insurmountable?

Ralph Waldo Emerson said: Always do what you’re afraid to do.  I believe that. I don’t believe courage is an absence of fear, it’s climbing over it, slashing through it.

It’s Shiva and Vajra.

fertile dust

May 3, 2010

Sunday, May 2

On beautiful cool sunny Saturday  I walked along the lake to the farmers market, bought carrots, looked at many things and smiled at people as we passed.  I very consciously tried to stay open and receptive and breathed deeply and slowly to encourage that.

Trees in bloom bent and danced in the breeze, clouds of life holding pollen blew, travelling great distances on wind in search of places to thrive.

I’m wondering how burners feel all year long when people seem corked up like  half drunk bottles of wine, only letting a little air in and a little out.

How do they replicate an inexplicable aura of a vast swath of desert filled with people who believe in unlimited possibilities when they leave the playa?

 Playa dust travels far distances like pollen, some on the skin and belongings of Burners returning back here. Are Burners the fertile wombs the dust seeks? For 51 weeks does playa dust alchemize their lives?

 Otherwise, isn’t it simply heartbreaking?