We’re back from Burning Man.
Overall it was as exhilarating as it was challenging. It was a week of beauty and adventure and art spread across a minefield of drama and angst. We survived and we had much fun, as you will see when Ben finishes editing and posting all the pictures.
Sadly, there are no pictures of the most lovely thing we saw, an enormous double rainbow spread all across the playa over the man. Oh wait, correction, duh, we have no pictures but there are plenty out there. (Bonus: here’s a gorgeous one that includes one of Gwen’s lanterns!)
On a less enthusiastic note, the Green Man theme was extremely perplexing. I seriously doubt that the fiery explosion of a giant oil derrick using 900 gallons of jet fuel and 2,000 gallons of liquid propane taught anybody anything about our deeply problematic dependence on oil. How exactly is blowing things up educational?
Since all 45,000+ Burning Man attendees travel to the barren playa via car or plane with only what they need to survive for the week, the burn is obviously not a sustainable event. I do think that most burners are pretty conscious about the environment, and it’s my understanding that there were some great permaculture and green living exhibits in the pavilion around the man before the arson/prank/earlyburn debacle. But for the most part, the green theme was overshadowed by the profusion of RVs, beer cans, and cigarette butts.
Still, I’m very glad I went. It was a spiritual journey and an experience I’ll be processing for quite some time. I feel like a burner, for whatever that’s worth, and I could see myself going again. In the end though, it’s mostly just a big wild free-for-all party that gains credibility and intensity from the crazy heat and dust storms and necessities of survival.
Thus my summer of festivals comes to its close. I’m regrouping, decompressing, getting back to work and trying to prioritize various goals and schemes. See you soon!