Whew, a busy day! In an attempt to make up for yesterday's sloth, I took a look through the "Where What When" guide to see what might be worth checking out. This extensive program guide lists all organized activities for the entire Burn... meaning anything anyone took the time to write up and send in ahead of time. It could be anything from sunrise yoga classes to Libertarian tea parties to tutu-making workshops. The first half of the guide lists one-off events by date and time, and the second half lists repeating events that happen at the same time each day. After spending about half an hour trying to process all this information and circling events that looked interesting, I got completely overwhelmed and blew a circuit in my brain and needed a time-out with a cold beverage.
I recovered enough to make a selection: hop on an art car and take a tour of some of the more far-flung Playa art. This seemed like a good choice for two reasons: (1) we'd been been trying to get a ride on an art car, and (2) a lot of the big art installations were pretty far away. Hey, we could kill two birds with one stone! One small catch: the departure point was on the other side of the city. But it was in the direction of another camp we'd wanted to visit anyway, so we decided to make it work.
We geared up with the appropriate accountrements -- goggles, sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, water, dust masks, bike locks, and a few sundry items -- hopped on our bikes, and pedaled off. About five bumpy, dusty, hot minutes into this little trek I had a small meltdown as I realized my bike was completely uncomfortable and there was no way I was gonna make it. But what other choice did I have? Walking there was simply not an option. So I gritted my teeth and got back on the horse, so to speak. Not every minute at Burning Man can be a barrel of monkeys. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it, even if my ass is killing me I will MAKE IT to 4:30 Plaza!
As planned, we did stop on the way at Pee Funnel Camp, which, as the name would imply, was a camp giving out Pee Funnels. A wonderful public service to all those with two X chromosomes! En route to the art tour, we encountered Barbie Death Camp & Wine Bistro. Huzzah! I'd been looking forward to visiting this camp since I first heard about it. Where else could you revel in the destruction of The Blonde One and her various compatriots, while enjoying a festive glass of either red or white wine? Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, the French Maid Brigade came by and dusted everyone off. (And we were all sooooooo dirrrrrrrty.) A moment of sublime synchronicity, to be sure.
By that point, it was 2pm, the appointed time for the art car tour. We made it to what we thought was the correct location, but the guide and the map are two separate documents and of course we'd only brought the guide. (We found out later that we were at 4:30 Portal instead of 4:30 Plaza. Good grief.) But, once again, the Playa provides. What could have been a frustrating experience turned into one of the highpoints of the event, as we ran into a gentleman decked out entirely in purple and accessorized with not one but two gold bags. After discussing the finer points of travel in India, he reached into the depths of his gold suitcase and produced two George Bush voodoo dolls. Brilliant! After that we attempted to find a reflexology workshop, but it was already full, so we checked out the Topless Teeter Totter of Terror and had a glass of cold lemonade a nearby camp. At this point the heat was just past the point of ridiculosity, so we headed for home, stopping for a bit of shade at Bacon Camp. Like ya do.
Back at GBOF, all I wanted was some shade and massive amounts of hydration. But somehow I found myself caught up in a fire safety meeting, and since I was too hot & tired to move, I just sat through it. While many of the folks in our camp would be spinning fire at the conclave that performs just before the Man burns, several others would be volunteering as fire safeties. I have to admit I wasn't really listening to much of what was being said at this meeting, but it was good to know that *somebody* would be out there keeping an eye on the flaming stuff.
After a quick dinner of Thai peanut chicken and salad, and an even quicker clean-up (there's only so clean you can ever really get, with all this dust around), it was time for an evening of cat-herding. The night's highlights:
* mysterious smoke rings appear in the sky
* The Wet Spots perform at Center Camp
* Spike's Vampire Bar... what the hell were they serving, anyway??
* Pringles wins an elephant g-string at the funk bar
* I Heart Unicorns
* Bollywood tunes at Ashram Galactica
* PEX's blacklight opera
* a visit to Porn & Eggs (the leopard bride performs!)
* DIY dance party at Duck Bar
* Tree of Knowledge
* nightcap of popcorn tasting (JiffyPop=scary!)