Although I had been to Burning Man once, my wife Betsy hadn’t experienced it and it really is someone to experience. At least once. In addition, I had told my son that should I go again I wouldn’t take him – unless he was over 18, and he happened to turn 18 this year. So off to Burning Man we went, myself, Betsy, my son and his girlfriend. My wife and I were a little uncomfortable with my son going so we laid down a few rules (mainly that he spend all but a little time with us) and that worked out fine.
You can make Burning Man into whatever you want it to be. For us, its a fantastic, strange art festival in the desert. I love to ride my bike around looking at the art and the people. You are suppose to “participate” and not just look, so we did make an effort to dress accordingly, which is actually kind of tough to figure out what that really means. I put some antique mountain climbing goggles I got in Nepal years ago on top of a felt hat I bought in Peru so I figured that made me look Burning manish and I thought Betsy did a great job with a leather vest and lots of jewelry. From the last trip a few years back I still had the UV LED (blacklight) system I made with fluorescent dyed T-Shirts that the kids used at night on their bikes.
Bikes are critical, especially when camping out at the airport like we did and unfortunately I couldn’t fit four bikes and four people in the plane at one time. So I ended up doing it in two trips each way. I went out a day early in the morning to drop off bikes, coolers and tents, then came the next day with a load of passengers. Similarly, I came back a day after the event to retrieve the gear (I lined the floor of the plane with plastic to help contain the dust). It was an hour flight each way so not too bad, and still better than dealing with the long drive. Although I have to say it is a pain cleaning everything afterwards (plane, bikes, etc.).
What did Betsy think? She was enthralled and overwhelmed and amazed. Burning Man does that to you. Would we do it again? We decided if we have some good friends going it would be a lot of fun to spend time there with friends. Otherwise I think you’ll find us in the mountains somewhere next labor day.