I woke up this morning, and Black Rock City is already disintegrating, vanishing. The burn of the Man is the highlight for many, and a lot o people leave after the burn.
Sometimes right after, sometimes even before, in order to avoid the enormous traffic jam that builds u when several thousand vehicles try to leave the playa and roll onto the one-way road out of the desert.
So you start to see empty camp sites where only yesterday there was a fun, colorful tent and some crazy event. You see everybody hammering and folding and cleaning up. You see people walk in lines over their amp sites to pick up any remaining moop.
Our plan today was to take down the camp completely and pack up, and just leave our tents out for an early morning ride out of Black Rock City.
So we started to dismantle our treehouse, by now a bit creaky, with the suspension bridge hanging considerably lower than in the first days even though we had pulled it up several times….
We took all the deco out of the playa, carefully avoiding to create moop that would fly away…
We took down the shade structures over our tents, the kitchen, packed the chairs and hammocks, the cushions…
What we had created in two days and what was out home on the playa disappeared quickly into the U-haul.
I was knocked out. After a week in the desert, my body really had taken a beating. Not only sleep deprived and dust-covered, but my skin on my feet and hands hurt from the constant exposure to the alkali dust, my nose was so dried out and bleed-y…
And my stomach was so upset that only a pill could save the day and stop the constant return to the PortaPotties…
Looking at my camp mates, I think we were all about ready to go home… everyone was tired.
We even discussed packing up and leaving early, ditching the burn of the temple, or leaving right after and trying to find something for the night in Reno.
But in the end we stayed with the original plan, to see the temple, sleep a bit, and get up at 3 a.m. to get ready and drive to Reno.
One last dinner – spaghetti – a walking dinner, as we had no more chairs, and then we dressed up to bike over the playa, beyond the still burning remains of the man, towards the Temple of Grace.