I signed up and bought the ticket a couple of month ago. It was so much to read so much information for such an open and free event/ festival or burn if you like to call it. There were so many different people here. Judging by the looks they were all weirdoes or nudists. But when you speak to them they are mostly very normal, maybe a bit more alternative, a bit more hippie and some are really in for the party. It is a mix. Some bank men, some IT people, all kinds really. A lot of party but for many, a burn is something else then cool music and drugs.
Some say a true burner participates, shares, challenge yourself and cares for the environment. They have a word called moop, material out of place. It is trash, or whatever which does not belong to the dessert environment. You pick it up and take care of it. We should do that everywhere even if it is not our hand it fell out of. I think it is a small declaration of love and care to nature and our fellow humans. Why don't we all do it at least ones a day.
So this week, this weird week, Africa Burn. The week started out with a feeling of being totally lost. People seemed so sure of themselves. They were dressing so weird. I also started to dress weird. I borrowed some clothes and wore my red masai scarf as a kilt. You think that sounds weird. Well it was normal here. And then a lot of cheap jewelry which people gave out and some crazy hat. Not to forget a head torch and some glow sticks as a lot of Africa Burn is a night event.
I got a ride out to the place from a guy I met on Facebook. It was nice to camp together with Luke, even if we did not see each other so much.
After a few days you get in to a routine.
Tent gets light and hot around eight in the morning so I get up from my sleeping bag. I slap the clothes a bit from the thin layer of dust. Only dressed in shoes and shorts I go to the toilets a few hundred meters away. Pretty cool toilets, facing the dessert. Beautiful! Only three walls and one open towards a magnificent view of the landscape.
On my way back I pass the Purple pancake tent which lovingly give me a few great pancakes. I chat for a bit and go back to my tent. I get a shirt on. Talk to my neighbors about lunch together later while having some breakfast. Luke, my camp mate is still sleeping in the car so I can't get to all the food. I just settle for milk and cereal. Then I pack my empty bicycle bags with small snack- chips bags for handing out to people. I lead my cycle walking the streets in this great camp site, watching people in one piece suits or tights and fures looking like rock stars or bunnies, naked or half naked people, feathers, some have goggles protecting them from dust. A lot of crazy hats and face or body paint. I go to the middle of the whole sight and there it is an Alian Café which serves nice free espressos and lattes. Actually everything is free here ones you are here, except ice which creates a three hour long queue every day.
So I have a couple of cups of really good coffee and talk to some girl which is so beautiful without make up but all so different. The kind of girl who uses other terms then you. If I say spiritual, she sais that word is so loaded so she uses another term. And she has no boyfriend, she has a love soul companion. And she has no job, money comes to her as gifts when she has sessions of healing. She has a plan to do a tantra course in six month in Asia but no other plans. She lives no where and everywhere. I get impressed, amused and nervous speaking to her. What? Did I get it all wrong? She is so confident and so young. This is like meeting a true alien. In a human perfect body. A bit like Leelo in the movie fifth element. We can't be from the same system or maybe not even from the same planet. But she claims to be Scandinavian. Could there be a planet out there with Scandinavia as a name? Most likely.
Now sun is really making it hot and at noon the "100% naked suits shower place" opens. I go there and there are already around 50 naked people in line for getting a carwash kind of shower. It is funny how bodys are so different. Yet when we are so many naked, we are all so much the same. Just like smurfs. Smurfs, only doing different things.
You get your clothes of. Stand in line. A naked guy has a machine and sprays chocolate with one hand and vodka with the other in your mouth. Then you get in to the foot bath with rubber ducks. You wait and then get a cold rinse from a guy spraying you. Then he points you to a few girls with foamy spunches. They wash you all over. Up and down. Then another rinse and they also wash your hair. Great! You go and feel as new!
There are few people to ask the time from but I go and meet my neighbors for lunch at the camp. They are Africans and claims to know how to braai, grill.
We have a great grilled chicken. They do know how to braai. My word how I love food! Grilled perfect chicken and a great big fresh salad with a cold beer on the side.
After lunch we really dress up and walk together. My bike is fully loaded with snack bags, 1 L of water and 1 L of white already warm wine. I also carry a cup on a hook to use for drinks on the way, everybody has this kind of cup. Partly to save nature from plastic cups.
We make our way through the carnival of people and everybody sais hi! I hand out some snacks.
This picture is taken on the way to the burn with all the snacks I brought to hand out.
We go over the big open space with the burn sculptures and stop and dance a bit. I have not told you just yet but there is a constant beat in this week. It is a constant base- trance kind of cool beat and sometimes more then one music very loud pumping this ground for you. For you to step in to the dance and move around. To the beat, step in to trance and get lost in the beat.
I get lost or we all do from each other. I have a drink. I start handing out snack bags and exchange for hugs. Great idea! I walk on and on. People sometimes ask about my map in the front of my bicycle and my tour through Africa. My experiences. It is fun and after a few hours I have got hundreds of hugs and some champagne back. It is giving me a warm smile on my inside and outside.
As the sun starts to set a wooden sculpture is set on fire.
It is a beautiful big black wooden horse. Hundreds of people watch in a circle around. Fire. So magical, this element, fire, so back to the roots.
I go around and I want to show appreciation to there gifts back, so I do. So a little affected by all people but more happy of everything else around I go back to my tent around midnight. Very tired. I am dirty and the tent is too. But I sleep good. The earplugs help a little but I still have the beats of the cool trance base music in my head.
To be continued...