Tales From The Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by its participants.
Having been raised in a strict religious environment, I spent the great majority of my life inside of a very small box, never being allowed freedom of expression because it was “too evil”. I had to come to burningman alone, with family and friends telling me that it would be a very dangerous enironment of drug crazed violence. In spite of the warnings, something deep inside me was crying out, “I want freedom of expression!”
As I prepared to leave, I kept asking myself one question, “What is inside of me that wants to come out?” Strangely enough, the picture that came to my mind was me wearing a dark mini-skirt with white nylons! I had never done cross dressing in my entire life, but the thought was strangely exhilarating! Also I wanted to be Naked in public, a complete opposite of my religious background. So I packed everything into my small Honda Civic, (keeping it simple with pup-tent, canned food and a small stove) and began my long journey into the heart of the Nevada dessert.
I arrived at about 5 a.m., dead tired, was barely able to put up my tent in the dark before crashing. Next thing I knew, it was a burning hot day with freedom in the air! I stepped outside the tent, and told myself, “OK, now is the time to express yourself by getting Naked!” And I froze. I couldn’t do it! It was far too embarrassing. Then I said, “OK, now is the time to wear a dress!” Once again, I couldn’t do it! What will people think? They will throw stones at me like they did in the Bible!
So I spent the first 4 days wearing very conservative clothing, watching the courage of others in following whatever came out of their hearts. Good, wonderful people everywhere courageously living their truth! Their courage rubbed off on me, so finally I walked to the edge of the desert where I could be alone, dropped all my clothing (symbolizing the shackles of false belief) and started walking toward The Man! Every step closer to the Man was one step closer to living my entire life by the Heart.
Naked on the outside represented Naked on the inside, no more hiding my authentic self! I was accepted by all, even cheered on by some! No stones! On the last night (burning of the Temple), I wore my black mini-skirt and white nylons, felt totally exhilerated, once again completely accepted by the most loving people on the planet! Speak your Truth, Live your Truth! I was dead before burningman. Now I’m living a life of passion in every area. The Man broke the ice around my frozen heart and forever melted it into the dessert sun.