Burning Man 2018: Living 7 Days in Black Rock Dessert
How does it feel living a whole week in Burning Man dessert?
Questions from Friends on What Burning Man 2018 is all About?
It was just a few months before my first Burning Man and I was spending all my free time doing research online to find out as much as I could about the most promising travel experience of my life. Add to that, my party animal nature and you’ll get the full picture of how excited I was to learn everything about the DJs, the parties, the seminars and how I could make the most of this experiece. Doing non stop research led me to nowhere. There was so much information online, the list of Burning Man events was literally endless, the YouTubers were talking about stuff that I had no idea about, and I had no idea which social media groups to trust.
In case you are doing an online research on Burning Man you must be already amazed by the endless number of resources available online and at the same time you’ll be struggling finding out information that you really need. Lets be honest. What we are looking for is simple ANSWERS TO basic QUESTIONS. As simple as that. Short, to-the-point, direct and concise answers on what to expect, what to prepare and on what to be extra careful or … extra-open minded. This is why I decided instead of long posts to simply answer a series of questions from friends, relatives or even strangers. I think this way will be more helpful to all of you! So, Welcome to the absolute Utopia land!
What is the coolest principle of Burning Man?
“Sharing, giving, receiving and connecting which leads to one magic word: gifts! Living in a 70k people community means that there is a million of possibilities for weird and wonderful experiences. Good news is that Burning Man encourages its members to come and share their gifts, big and small. The main starting (and ending ) point of exchanging gifts is making incredible friends. So no matter where I was each time, (once I was even waiting outside the public toilets lol!) I have continuously been given absolutely personal and for that reason wonderful gifts! Hand-made postcards, magic crystals, pottery objects, silver rings, sprays with botanical oils, and empty perfume bottles. This part was what I loved most, sharing gifts, coming closer, hugging each other instead of handshaking!”
What was the best workshop/event you joined?
“The best event I saw was one organised by a guy who spoke to us about his 17 years of sailing experience around the world. He shared 9 extraordinary insights that he came with after his 30,000 hours of meditation. The event was called “How I tried to learn what everyone already knew” and I am so grateful I went even after a six continuous nights of partying and a super crazy hangover!”
How did you survive living in dessert with no access to water? Where did you have a shower?
“First of all, I need to say that we were lucky enough to join Burning Man festival with our own rented RV. That means we had enough water in our RV tank to use from the beginning till the end of the festival. At the end of the day, everything relies on good planning, right? However, I need to say that this “enough water” we had, is most likely not good enough for everyone. What we really did was limiting the number of our showers by having only one every 2/3 days, and these showers were so quick that some times they were lasting just a couple of minutes. Given we were staying all the time in dessert this was a real challenge especially considering how dirty we got all the time.
When our water supplies finished, two days before we left Burning Man we had no other option but having a shower from plastic bottles. For washing our faces every morning we used to use the same bottles of wa
ter. We just made sure that we would have a lot of them with us before we went to Burning Man. So for 2 people, I’d say we bought almost 30 litres of fresh water (in addition to what we had already in the RV tank). And this was really more than enough!!! Now, in case that you’ll decide living in a camp and not in a tent camp you’ll be provided with access to showers by the camp.
How hot was the weather? How was the feeling living in dessert for 7 days? Did you get sunburned?
“I’d say that weather on Playa is really unpredictable. It is without a doubt a place that you’ll see dust storms, high winds, and freezing temperatures. The only thing we did not see during our seven days staying at Black Rock City was rain and that was only because we were just lucky. During the daytime the temperature reaches +38 °C and the night goes down to 3°C. Believe me that with such violent weather the last thing you might care about is if you got sunburned or not. To be honest, what you might keep thinking instead is that you probably didn’t get enough furs to walk into the freezing dessert’s nights or maybe enough swimsuits for surviving in the heating days at Playa. A Burner told me once that the reason that even without sun cream we do not get sun burned is because of the dessert’s sand which sticks on our skins and protects us. No matter how surreal this might sound, I think I’d agree with him!”
What you didn’t do right but you’ll think about twice next year?
“To be honest it is a long to-do list and no matter how silly these things may sound believe me while you are on Playa they make a real difference. So, I will certainly begin with the following:
To create inspiring hand-made gifts for my fellow Burners (instead of buying them)
To find a Burner nickname for my self
To participate in more workshops, events, and seminars
To decorate my bike and buy a way more lights for it
To volunteering, teaching yoga and eventually giving something back to the amazing Burning Man community”
What are the stuff you wish you hadn’t forgotten taking with you?
“More long sleeve tops, furs and isothermals
Anti- dust wet tissues, can’t describe how helpful they are
A portable radio for being tuned with Burning Man radio station when I am out of the RV
My brush, needless to say that my hair still look like a mess
More wine and prosecco, I’m not a big fun of beer and the wine on Playa is bad”
What’s the weirdest event you’ve been?
“The weirdest was the “Red Tantra” event which was about harvesting sexual energy through meditation. It was meant to be a couples serious learning activity but Denis (my BF) was kept laughing all the time. He could not concentrate from the very beginning till the end and to be honest couldn’t even blame him so we just ended up lying down and chilling on a bunch of massive teddy bears.”
It is so obvious that I had a fantastic time on Burning Man Festival that to be honest I am seriously thinking to re-join next year. What do you think? Do you have any other festivals to recommend me instead?