Kate Raudenbush on the swing in her "Altered States
And we’re off …
The gates opened last night and the cars and trailers and trucks and mutant vehicles came streaming through, to the whoops and hollers of those just arriving, and from the people welcoming them Home. All the weeks and months of work had coalesced into this moment of relief and joy and anticipation and excitement. The guests have arrived, and dinner is served.
It was a beautiful night in Black Rock City. There had been steady winds of about 25 mph all day long, and the forecast was for increasing gusts, but when night fell the air was calm. It made for a festive night.
“I love this place!” one person shouted, for no apparent reason. “I love this place more!” answered another.
The Man got checked out by one of the Man crew just before the first people climbed aboard.
Out at the Man, cars and bikes and blinking people lined up around the perimeter of the base, waiting for the clock to strike 12 so they could climb the winding staircase to the top. BMIR was broadcasting the countdown, like some mutant version of Dick Clark’s New Years Eve show on TV. When the witching hour arrived, and the radio was playing “Consider yourself, at home! Consider yourself, part of the family!,” up and up the people went to get a view of the Man and a view of the city. Poor Betty June was stationed at one side of the staircase, patiently telling people that the “up” stairwell was on the other side, and then helping people as they made their way down. She’d be on duty till 4 in the morning, and there will be someone stationed there round the clock, all week long, letting people know that one way’s up, and the other way’s down.
Over at Kate’s Raudenbush’s “Altered States,” the work lights blinked off, and then the birdcage glowed red in the darkness. It is just so gorgeous. There was a sweet moment for Kate and the crew; appetizers were spread out inside the dome, champagne corks were popped, and heartfelt words were spoken. “This is for all of you,” Kate said, tearing up. “It just couldn’t have happened without you.”
Then she had everyone, on the count of three, pull out a branch from beneath the table, each person coming away with a little piece of the whole. It was very touching, and they all seemed like family standing there celebrating together.
And the piece really does look like a glowing Capitol building from a distance (it’s designed after the U.S. Senate building). Read more »