BURNING MAN - BLACK ROCK CITY 2011

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As we left BLACK ROCK CITY (BRC) in the Nevada Desert and the iconic “BURNING MAN” celebration, I can’t help feeling, “thank feck for that!!!”.   Nothing can prepare a ‘Newbie’, especially one who is three months pregnant, to this onslaught of the senses!

The heat, the dust, the dust and the dust!!  Phewww!!  It was a challenge and a worry knowing that I was subjecting myself to extreme survival situations only having ‘just’ come out of that First Trimester hormonally-up-and-down ‘sicky’ stage.  I was glad that I decided NOT to crew and instead be a ‘gentle’ participant and contributor at this massive event.  I knew I could leave at anytime.  There was no way I was going to put my pregnancy in jeopardy.

The event is characterized by massive art projects, its namesake at the centre which is burnt towards the close.  Participants head into the desert each year to build a working city from the ground up.  This includes an airport, a post office, radio station, hospital and security teams (to name a few).  Self-styled “burners” exercise radical self-reliance, community, civic responsibility and an economy based on giving freely.  It has a beautiful ethos, and there is an air of excitement, acceptance of artistic expression and hedonism like no other I have ever experienced.

Burning Man started with an 8-foot structure burning on a beach in California at summer solstice and has morphed into a sophisticated community with year-round projects.

“LOVE THE DUST MAN!!”

This anti-establishment arts festival and survival project, created from the grey alluvium of the Black Rock Desert, however, leaves its mark in your heart.  It is truly an amazing experience and my RIGHT OF PASSAGE was a success.  I did miss my old wild-party self  and it would have been a very different experience indeed had I not abstained from pretty much ‘everything’! lol.  But this was ‘my’ Right of Passage, and one I accepted in a state of content and happy surrender, with only the occasional bit of frustration!

I did, however, during the cooler hours of the day (when I could venture away from the shade and a loo),  explore, experiment and participate in BRC’s weird and wonderful workshops and events.

Our performance of Mr & Mrs Mud, inspired by our adoptive Asaro tribal family in Papua New Guinea, was a huge success and was very well received.  I was chuffed to have been chosen to receive an award, certificate and medal for our artistic tribal contribution.

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