Sunday, September 30, 2007

Burning Man 2007: My Name is Tori and I am a Burner

Me & My Man, Burning Man 2007

I don't have a playa name. I haven't earned one yet. Out of 11 people in our camp, only 2 have names, the second earned and announced this year at the end. I tried one on for a minute at the gate for like 5 minutes this didn't work. That's not how it happens. You can't name yourself. It's ok. It'll happen when it's supposed to. Me and that dust aren't parting any time soon. Yeah, I'm going back next year. I can't wait a year plus the weeks I am counting.

Me & The Man before the Burn, Burning Man 2007

You know, it's weird, to finally call myself a burner. It took a random post, the approval of strangers and a comment by a respected friend and mayor on top of weeks of introspection to get to that point. "You are Ms. T." he said, and "Damn straight" he seconded on top of messages and numerous replies thanking me for my poignant conversation topic -- "Who or What is a Burner?" I've written more than once in recent weeks about my struggles with where my type of personality fits into the burner community overall, but I haven't been very public about my struggle with my ownership back here in the real world of who I am out there. Understandably, the first time I announced to the world on a week's notice that I was going, the immediate reactions made me doubt myself and expectations for the adventure ahead. It was hard to convince everyone that it was my thing when I wasn't even sure what it was. When I got out there, it was harder than anyone can tell you and I spent the first night in my tent after puking from the environment change and stress. I thought they were right and I tried to make the most of that week, and I took in the art and the adventure and I came back feeling like it was a growing but isolating and I placed a lot of conditions on what I wanted if I returned. I wasn't sure I'd go back but the longer and longer I was away from it, the more and I more I couldn't stop thinking about it and I just knew I had to try again with the growth of a couple of years under my belt.

Cheese! We Come in Pieces, Burning Man 2007

This time, I stepped out of the car strong, unapologetic and ready. I have done a lot of work on myself since last time I was out there, and I am more aware of who I am and was open to what the playa had to give to me this time without being so afraid. I sprung into action, built camp, stayed when needed and went about life like it was here. Except I was reheating my famous chili on a propane stove instead of an electric one. I was enthusiastic about our camp, I brought the mailbox and I painted the old nasty patio table I had with the coolest krylon paint to make it all funky and then donated it to the life of the camp. I realize now I didn't have to really be engaged with the camp in terms of night life or social interaction to feel the safety and comfort of having my "family" there if I needed them. My friends back here in the default world hadn't had much of a chance to comment on Burning Man since if you don't work with me or find me online, I've been absent since June. It's also just too hard to explain and you tire of defining how it is not a sex fest or a hippie fest or a drug fest but all of those things are there. It's just any old city like this one with a little bit more of a cooperative utopian value to build on and you get to cheer when big things burn, unlike here in the real world when fire is usually a bad thing. Those in my life that did hear about it in the months before were more supportive this time but I was still partially unaware and completely unable to describe the connection that was forming between me and the dusty world beyond. My living room swelled with stuff that I realized later I never needed or wanted and will now live in a costume box for the next 50 years of my life and I packed it all and headed out to build a temporary life for myself away from the crazy things that go on here. I learned a lot about what I need out there, and how "next time I'll get this down". I awed at a friend's set-up at another camp and he said that we are building infrastructure and I laughed. From where we were 2 years ago when I was showering in the dish pan, yeah, we've built a bit. I need to keep that in mind, it's a rolling investment, a hobby, and a lifestyle. I will probably have these coolers, tubs and costumes for 10 years and I am sure my collection of comfort items will grow.


I can already see my shopping list for this year, and we are already brainstorming new camp names, concepts, volunteer opportunities and drive in dates. If I have to work the whole week that I am out there next time, I will. We already have 3 art projects for placement (1 returning and 2 new) and I am already trying to figure out what I am going to do as a solo project. This is actually going to be my biggest personal goal this year on top of the getting involved and building a solid theme camp building a future positive reputation on the playa. It is really important to the part of me that is an artist that I really recognize what the guys accomplished this year and how successful they were. People loved their idea and it's hard in a city of 47,000 people to not impress someone. I mean, I've always gotten generally positive feedback on my art, so why not finally just dive in and think big. Like 20 feet by 20 feet by 20 feet big or bigger. Like not painting like building. What does the American Dream mean to me and how does that inspire me? Watch for news, I'm sure you'll hear plenty. But next year, you can bet I'll drive in early, I'll be at that gate all week, I'll work for the Bureau of Erotic Discourse (BED) and spread the word of respect and appreciation as well as make sure that my camp contributes to the overall growth and betterment of the community. I can't sit back here in the default world another year while my community is changing and I have no control. If I want my world to be what I want and need it to be in 2009, that means in 2008, I need to take action.


Right now, my eyes are on Decompression and establishing myself as a strong and vibrant member of the local burner community. I want to meet the people to help guide me to making the most positive impact I can on this community that I am no longer afraid to say that I am more than a member of, but an instigator of. There is nothing wrong with being a burner, and there is nothing wrong with being the type of burner I am. Every world needs all types, even the crazy guys that do insane things that other idiots praise as art but in the end might just have woken everyone up again. For the record, I hate that fucker and I wish we could all beat him for his idiot publicity stunt. That said, I think it's really going to make for an incredibly facsinating pendulum swing next year and I am going to be one of the ones pushing it as hard as I can towards the good side of things.

Post rainstorm, Burning Man 2007

The man burns in 335 days.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Burning Man 2007: More Art (Snapped In Sin Exclusive Post!)

Big Rig Jig, Burning Man 2007

Big Rig Jig

Crude Awakening Sculpture, Burning Man 2007

Crude Awakening, Burning Man 2007

Crude Awakening Sculpture, Burning Man 2007

Crude Awakening Sculptures

Critical Tits, Burning Man 2007

Critical Tits Rider

Skinny Kitty Tea House, "Skinny" Cats, Burning Man 2007

Skinny Kitty Tea House "Skinny Kitties"

Fall Sunset at the Crows Nest, September 2007



Not Yummy: Are you kidding me?



Yummy! Comforting Chocolate at Chocolate


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Burning Man 2007: Day & Night / How to Enjoy the Playa at Home.

From the top of the Steampunk Treehouse

Seriously...this is so true, it's scary and I think gives a great idea to people who have never been. I laughed harder than I have in forever. The first one is by far my favorite. I do have to disagree with the last 10 or so words of this list tho. ;)

  • Stack all your fans in one corner of your living room. Put on your most fabulous outfit. Turn the fans on full blast. Dump a vacuum cleaner bag in front of them.

  • Get so drunk you can't recognize your own house. Walk slowly around the block for five hours.

  • Pitch your tent next to a wall of speakers in a crowded, noisy nightclub. Go to sleep.

  • Read "Dhalgren" by Samuel R. Delany. Read "The City Not Long After" by Pat Murphy. Cut off the bindings, throw all the pages up in the air, and shuffle them back together. Reread "The Long City Not After Dhalgren" by Samuel Murphy. Burn it. Read the ashes.

  • Buy a new set of expensive camping gear. Break it.

  • Pay an escort to not bathe for five days, then cover themselves in glitter, dust, and sunscreen, wear a skanky neon wig, dance close naked, then say they have a lover back home.

  • Sprinkle sand in your food.

  • Tear down your house. Put it in a truck. Drive 10 hours in any direction. Put the house back together. Invite everyone you meet to come over and party. When everyone leaves, follow them back to their homes, drink all their booze, and break things.

  • Lean back in a chair until that point where you're just about to fall over, but you catch yourself at the last moment. Hold that position for 9 hours.

  • Only use the toilet in a house that is at least 3 blocks away. Drain all the water from the toilet. Only flush it every 4 days. Hide all the toilet paper.

  • Visit a restaurant and pay them to let you alternate lying in the walk-in freezer and sitting in the oven.

  • Don't sleep for 5 days. Take a wide variety of mind-altering substances. Pick a fight with your boyfriend/girlfriend.

  • Cut, burn, electrocute, bruise, and sunburn various parts of your body. Forget how you did it. Don't go to a doctor.

  • Buy a new pair of favorite shoes. Throw one shoe away.

  • Spend a whole year rummaging through thrift stores for the perfect, most outrageous costume. Forget to pack it.

  • Set up a DJ system downwind of a three alarm fire. Play a short loop of drum-n-bass until the embers are cold.

  • Mail $200 to the Reno casino of your choice.

  • Go to a museum. Find one of Salvador Dali's more disturbing but beautiful paintings. Climb inside it.

  • Spend thousands of dollars on a deeply personal art work. Hide it in a funhouse on the edge of the city. Blow it up.

  • Have a 3 a.m. soul-baring conversation with a drag nun in platforms, a crocodile, and Bugs Bunny. Be unable to tell if you're hallucinating. Lust after Bugs Bunny.

  • Listen to music you hate for 168 hours straight, or until you think you are going to scream. Scream. Realize you'll love the music for the rest of your life.

-Author Unknown


Monday, September 17, 2007

Burning Man 2007: Dusk Reflections


Sometimes the anti-sunset was better than the sunset. That's what some guy walking by called this side as I drank my beer and snapped pictures while dancing in the middle of the street to the music bumped by our neighbors, Big Puffy Yellow. Just like back here in the default world, sunset is my favorite time of day at Burning Man. The dust storms calm, the heat cools and in the distance a horn sounded every night at the start of the fall and the final disappearance of the bright ball behind the mountains. It was incredible and moving and the vibe was electric. I loved it more than I can ever say. I can call a beautiful sunset hours away by the clouds and other pending factors and I watched the horizon fall with great expectations. We were blessed more than once with a perfect sky to end a battling day. It was picture perfect.

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The descending of the sun starts cocktail hour, just try and get by the week without a free drink or twelve, especially if you have your own cup. I enjoyed my first of the week at the Mile High Club where the bartender was dressed as a pilot and flight attendants in white knee high gogo boots surrounded us in glow stuff as they danced by the carved burn barrel. It's an hour of reflection, an hour of partying, or a 10,000 man light saber battle. For me, it was the start of my time every day, since most days were spent in camp fighting for it's integrity and defending my body from the WMD that the wind was electing to be. Cleaning up camp, wiping myself down, changing clothes while dinner is prepared, I sat with my lantern in the entrance of my tent and relaxed. I thought a lot about how I was going to survive the challenges that seemed to be listing themselves in front of me. It is such a hard satisfying struggle, where every day you fight to live and your reward is how prepared you feel to take on the next day despite the previous day's abuse. I was bruised, beaten, chapped and blistered, yet self reflective and internal in a way I hadn't expected.

Reflection, BRC 2007

In retrospect, I would have to say that the theme this year for me was acceptance. If last time I had the stereotypical "finding myself" venture, this time, I think I spent a lot of time coming to terms with who I am and where I am in my life. I live in a city of 45,000 people and then left and went to a city with 45,000 people. I am who I am here and I'm not sure why I thought that I'd move any more than a few degrees away from that when given the freedom to be as much of a hedonist as I'd like to think I'd really be. I tried to comment at one point that fortunately, for me, and the majority of my campmates, Burning Man really isn't culture shock. I had lived most of my life as a gypsy hippie in California, and spent the last ten years in the Bay Area where pierced, tattoed and pink haired people rock the streets with their unicycles and fur bikes daily. Seeing them all dusty or having them introduce themselves as Tapioca really doesn't blow my mind as much as the sweet thirty somethings that flew in from Italy. I have fair access here to as much wild trouble as I'd like to enlist myself into, granted without the big flames and concentrated selection, so I guess I don't feel the need to pop my top for 8 days and push my boundaries.

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I don't like night time, loud music or crowds much back here, and I truly struggled this year with those elements out there. I'm not an outdoors girl, but the weather and sleeping on the ground was nothing compared to loud roaring music camps with thousands of bikes or sardine packed tipping art cars. I gave myself a fair amount of grief both before and during the event for not pushing myself more to do more of the nighttime and fire stuff. Why didn't I stay out all night and get drunk and be out at sunrise? It's just not me, but can I be a true burner if I don't trip on mushrooms and climb on the Thunderdome? It's a question I still don't know the answer to. I volunteered for my city and I worked at the front gate greeting people, hugging them and explaining the rules like the civil servant, RA and trade show girl I am. And the first day, I did it naked, like a proud exhibitionist needing to get involved. (But really, with that much camp gear on, are you really naked?) Coming home from that shift and having my only real shower of the week was one of the most satisfying times my whole time out there, and being out there on the front lines was truly some of the most fun I had all week. I was outside, talking to people, hugging people and trying to give them the best start to hopefully one of the best times of their lives. Actually, my latest night was at the gate when I pulled a 12-4am shift with 5-6 other burners pushing people into the outer limits of the city as we opened a whole new street due to over capacity. It isn't like I went to bed at 10 or anything the other nights. I did stay up until 2am the first night to watch the lunar eclipse, because damn, you just can't miss that once in a lifetime opportunity to see that auburn ball in the sky sitting in the middle of the desert. The man and derrick took way longer than expected so Saturday night was late but I was still more of a party pooper than most when I asked to be walked home and they all went back out. It was a terribly rough night for me, but Sunday as I rode back to the ashes of the man and sifted through to find screws for my campmates, I finally decided I didn't care.

Cheers! My Shadow after Critical Tits, Burning Man 2007.

I am so incredibly proud of where I am in my life. At 29 I am strong, and loved and supported by some of the most incredible people and on a full and hopeful path. I didn't only survive a full week in Black Rock City, I thrived and grew. I didn't change, I just became comfortable enough to actually be in a moment or two. So what if I wasn't meant to be a creature of the night but a sleepy lazy art lover who likes to ride her bike topless? Look where I am in my life? Look at all the things that I have to celebrate? I can't believe how far I have come from the girl who was ready to cry from all the dust two years ago, walking the outer streets crying, certain I was done for. I was tested, and I was put in situations where I had to really collect myself and contemplate my emotions and do it alone without the support of the people that hold me up on a daily basis. The confrontation was anything but a vacation, but I feel almost as refreshed. I'm still struggling immensely with my post playa return to stresses of a different sort, but I am also recharged with the motivation to go on and fill my life with memories. It'll be two weeks tomorrow we've been back...and fifty until they can return. I'm not sure if I'll go back next year...but he's still my man and it won't be forever until him and I are dancing in the dust again.

Me & the Dust Man

Burning Man 2007: Dust Storm Diva!

Dust Storm Diva! Burning Man 2007

This is now my favorite picture of me ever, ever. I risked the life of my camera and getting dust in all it's precious parts to capture the moment when for a second, I thought I might die. Who's a wussy Girl? Me...HA! (Just maybe dramatic.) I have the power of greyskull! She-ra be damned. Not that I can usually be accused of being prissy, but sometimes, I even surprise myself. Like in dust storms about to have a panic attack. We were riding to meet a friend after the Critical Tits ride, and one girl rode off and the storm hit, and me and another girl were stuck out in wide open playa and I freaked out and left her and tried to find shelter and got lost and had to ask for help and it was a very huge challenge but I survived and made it home before the rain. I said in an entry before I left, people can tell you "dusty" and people can tell you "windy" and "white out" but as you ride head on into 60mph winds with dust taking a whack at being a low cost exfoliator...for your really do find new definitions for words you thought you were clear on. Like ouch. I must have screamed that word and a few expletives about a hundred million times over the course of the first 20 minutes I passed by the same intersection and rocks flew onto my legs that were about to fail me. (It took a good 3 tries in the storm and around the stupidness that is center camp's street layout to end up going the right way.)


Notice the sunglasses/goggles combo I'm working? That wasn't our first day of dust storms. The first day, we played pick your pole and keep it home. It wasn't just our shade structure that was structurally questionable, as domes rolled the streets and a brief search of flickr shows comical crashes abound. But for a good 2 hours, you sat, stood, chased and held things in place while pole dancing. Afternoons were not spent critically observing art, but quipping quickly and cursing the storm. "Get that..." "Wait there..." as things flew off of tables and through our camp and you wondered who would come back to help and who was lost and dirtiest. It was good team bonding at a minimum, and awesomely great laughs as everyone seems to be energized by the fighting of nature.


Inside my tent after the dust storm. *Everything* was covered in those layers of dust. The best advice I got off tribe was to bring an extra sheet and cover everything. I got a lot of compliments on how homey my tent was, and I was pretty proud, but it certainly collected the dust. I remembered to do cover it all most days, so my bed stayed generally protected most of the week, my nightstand/hat box, not so lucky. I should have taken a picture of the sheet, but I was too concerned with getting my bed clean again and dumped it all back on it's home again.

Horse in a Dust Storm

Horse in the Dust Storm at the Man on Sunday. Always freaking dust storms. My lungs are filled with the playa.


And finally, a faint photograph of the double rainbow after the rain storm.

Burning Man 2007: "You know Tori, Your hair looks good dreaded!"


This morning, I got to lay in my bed past 10am. When I left my house, I didn't have my Camelbak, goggles, bandana, bike, sunglasses, chapstick, or my camera. I didn't put on sunscreen. My breakfast was not a power bar and frozen vitamin water, and I didn't brush my teeth in a tub and spit in a grey water container. I had to look at myself in the mirror. I had to contemplate make-up and consider a bra. I brushed my hair. The clothes I put on were clean, unwrinkled and matched. I entered a world that I was sure was staring at me, watching me and judging me for more than my wildness, my creative talents and the pureness of who I am. It's a lot to be back for a girl who is fragile on a normal day. It's a challenge to fight dust storms, transport yourself, feed yourself and protect yourself emotionally in a world of experiements, but it is even more to take her from the safe confines of general acceptance and stick her back in a world of measurements. Here I have an age, my hair has a length and color, my skin has flaws, and my breasts have a size. Only a week ago I walked a land with dusty toes, scared and alone and afraid of relying on myself, but certain at any moment that I fell, there were thousands around me to catch me, I was always sure I was a reach away from someone who understood. Here, I am not even trusting in my ability to catch myself, hiding from the harsh reality and stresses that are trying to pull me apart. In a city with walls, I feel divided from those around me, terrified of the next moment.

Give me back my stormy skies, dust in the corners of my eyes...I want to feel whole again.

Burning Man 2007: Temple of Forgiveness


I spent a lot of time in open playa this year. I found myself riding farther and more than last time, my legs expertly sculpted after a week on the playa diet with the daily ten miles or more on a one gear bike, bumping down the road. (By Sunday, I was certain another ten feet might rip my legs from my body.) A lot of that is due to the art project we had placed in outer playa, but also because the art out there drew me in more than that in the city this time. I only spent one day actually in the temple, and it ripped me apart and I couldn't go back, but yet it can be spotted in more pictures in my collection than any other object, including myself. I had a very hard time expressing emotion this year, in a place where I held myself back, unable to handle the possibility of being comforted or questioned about my tears and anger. I didn't want comfort, I just wanted to feel my pain and found no place acceptable to do so except alone in the distance of this monument and it's beauty.

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Thank you David Best for giving me this icon, this place that became the center of my thoughts, the apex of my internal debate. What is forgiveness and who do I need to forgive? Who needs to forgive me? I sat in a tiny corner of the temple and prayed for those that have no idea that I do them harm to forgive me. I let myself go to a place I had forbid myself to, and felt guilt I had previously refused to assume. I cried and snotted into a pink bandana, hoping for guidance, forgiveness for the hatred I feel. How can I ask for forgiveness for my sins when I cannot forgive those that have hurt me? I left offerings, wrote wishes, and asked to be cleansed of my pain.

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Somewhere over the rainbow sang out in perfect tone before she burned. A perfect selection for a week when we saw double rainbows fly over the city, and I felt the desire to fly just as high. It was amazing, beautiful, and moving, even if the entire crowd did not embrace the moment and descended into sporting event antics. It was not about the big fire, but the sending off of pain, wishes, dreams and memories. My memories. I bit my lip and held my tears and cried inside unable to express what was breaking inside me. My guilt cannot be erased, and even if it is an object controlling my life, I cannot forgive right now, and ache. But from those ashes rose my conversation with myself, a dialogue on these emotions and challenges raised from the destruction of the temple that served as my reminder of my struggles in the default world. It is a conversation that will continue indefinitely.


See more of my temple pictures here.

Burning Man 2007: Where on the Playa is Jesus?

Since I'm not quite ready to talk about my time in the dusty world from which I have crawled out of, I'll go ahead and tell you about my friend Jesus. As many of you know, I camped with a theme camp this year who had an art installation project and thanks to that, we got pre-placement and I was able to receive off-playa mail during my stay. This turned out to be a lifesaver in many ways, and was a fun part of our daily camp experience. Our first mail delivery came on Tuesday, and what a delivery it was! Not only did I get a rockin' postcard from thegoodreverend he sent me from Laughlin, but he snuck Jesus in, and well, he became a full member of We Come in Pieces 2007. We had a blast, and my campmates loved him. He became quite the group project.

Jesus hitches a ride on my Camelbak

"Hi Tori! I hope you're having a great time! My friend Jesus here wanted to go to Burning Man, but couldn't get a ride, so I told him I'd send him with you. Please, if you're willing/able, take him on a few adventures, and take a few pictures with him so I know he's having a good time too. His adventures can be fun, serious, crazy, sexy or anything in between."

So off we went...

Jesus at the Oil Derrick

We didn't get far the first day, Jesus had to set up his tent and stuff, but he heard they were going to blow up 800 gallons of propane later in the week and wanted to check out the structure before it was toast, so we road out to the playa to get a glimpse. It was awesome and he couldn't stop talking about how excited he was for Friday night. Even though they didn't end up blowing it until Saturday after the man burn, it was by far one of the highlight pieces and events of the year.

Jesus and the sunset

After setting up camp, Jesus checked out the sunset and called it an early night.

Me & Jesus Jesus with the Neighbor

It was kiss o'clock on the sun dial, so Jesus pecked my cheek and then made friends with a neighbor.

Jesus checks the mail Jesus and his morning coffee

Jesus thought some friends might be sending him mail now, so first thing when he got up, he went to check the mailbox and then grabbed a cup of coffee while we figured out our agenda.

Jesus gets ready for a night out Jesus plays with the e ball

Jesus had some suggestions for some nighttime activities.

Jesus with Postman 2 Jesus with Postman 3

Jesus loved the postmen. Every day, he took the delivery and posed with our new friends while they hung out with us.

Jesus with the Sun Dial at Laugh O'Clock Jesus poses with the camp sign

Jesus was definitely the jokester of the camp. His favorite time of day was laugh o'clock and gave our camp sign 2 thumbs up.

Jesus in a dust storm

Jesus was lucky he was low to the ground in the dust storm. We were all a bit bitter he decided to dance in the street while we held the shade structure together. Jesus w/ the 4:30 plaza theme camp map

Jesus was bummed he didn't make it to more of our neighbor camps, but did at least get a chance to visit the plaza around the corner with us one day.

Jesus and his new friends IMG_5560

Jesus and the Passion Pig Jesus and Sumo pose for a quick shot at Playa info

He did make some friends a little more his style though, so that was neat.

Jesus at the Big Rig Jig Jesus and some neat art

The Big Rig Jig was another monumental project this year and both of us loved the second piece immensely.

Jesus goes to the Critical Tits afterparty Jesus makes friends at Playa info

Jesus worked the party, but didn't really make any friends there. He did find these nice girls at Playa info he was trying to work on though.

IMG_4815 Jesus at the top of the Tree House

We did a bit more riding around the playa and checked out some more art, and even went up in the treehouse.

Jesus @ Salon Soleil while we charge camera batteries Jesus @ Burning Man Stickers

It was a hot day though, so we swung by Salon Soleil to chill in their shade and charge our camera batteries. We lucked out and got these great stickers too.

Jesus at the Temple of Forgiveness Jesus has some Sinful Wine!

We went to the temple, and it was a hard day, so Jesus kicked back with some wine.

Jesus spreads the word!

Jesus dug this sign a lot. This is one of his favorite brc principles.

Jesus at the Man the day after the Burn Jesus shows off his souvenir from the man

Jesus had a blast at the burn and woke up the next morning to visit the ashes and posed with a screw leftover.

Jesus and new friends from Switzerland Jesus gets his first Playa gift! Jesus gets Playa-fied in his fur "Man" Coat

When we came back to camp that day, Jesus made new friends from Switzerland that gave him his very first playa gift, a burning man fur costume.

Jesus at Beer O'Clock Jesus kicks it on the seat

Jesus kicked back with a beer before his bike ride. No sense in getting one of those "Swig and Swerve" Bike DUI's they were rumoring out there!

Jesus takes a trip to the Porta Potties Jesus loves you!

To finish the day, Jesus had to relieve himself in the lovely Porta-potties and found some art dedicated to him! Jesus and I had a great Burn. He was a good friend and never bitched about where I wanted to go, and never was bummed when we called it an early night. Turns out Jesus has had his share of big fire and loud music too, and isn't the best dancer so didn't want to embarass himself at the sound camps. The only places Jesus didn't do really well were the Temple and the place of idols in open playa. Since there were many people there with many different beliefs in very vulnerable states, we decided it was best he waited and guarded the bikes. He didn't mind since he still got his picture with David Best's masterpiece and got to see the beautiful statues carved and set for worship in the sand. He strongly believes in respect and the community principle and wanted to make sure he abided. So we're back...and not sure if next year we will go home again, but still consider it home. More about my adventures as they thaw from my brain. Thank you so much Mike...It really meant a lot to me. There are many more pictures floating about from my campmates and various visitors that I will try and add to the collection as I get them.