Dear Burning Man, Whoever You Are

This is My Decompression: A Simple man’s desire to understand why and to preserve why we attend.

I have been to this event for three years
I have survived as have those that have accompanied me
I like to think that I have helped in those survivals and experiences
But is that an honor I have earned?
Why do you make me question myself?
Burning Man what are you really?
Are you a test of my abilities?
Of my resolve
Or are you more
This event started as a challenge for me
But it has turned into a quest
I want to find the meaning
I want to understand
Is it the Art?
Is it the mutant cars?
Is it the participants?
So many
From so many different cultures
From so many different backgrounds
Is it the fact that you can join so many for so short a time and make them relevant and self supporting?
I have an opinion
I am not sure that it is relevant to any other except me
And I do not care
My opinion is as follows
You challenge me in January to come and see what can be
Can I survive and bring those I love to experience what you have to offer
I say that I can and will
You promise a mutually supporting society that can and will survive despite the actions of a select few.
You offer wonderment, excitement, and bewilderment
You insight creativity, artistry, and negativity
All the while providing a palette for each and everyone to express themselves should they desire
I am sorry
Yet grateful
I am sorry that the freedom and expression you allow for so few days
Cannot extend into the remainder of the year that we must endure
I am grateful for the time I get to spend with you
As you challenge me I return the favor
I challenge you to entice and dare me to attend
If you can do this
You have my promise that I and those I Love that care to attend will arrive.
We will experience what you have to offer and provide our own contribution.
For now I anticipate with bated breath what you have to offer next year.
My struggle continues I still have not figured out the why
However the desire to find the reason is enough to keep me coming
Just maybe the why is a magical what if….or is it what will I miss If I do not make the trip
I shall spend the next year looking for the why, however the why has suddenly become obvious, If we do not ask why, then how do we grow?
If you build it they will come
If you build it I will come
See you next year
Burning Man

by John Walmsley

About the author: Tales From the Playa

Tales From the Playa

Tales From the Playa are dreams and memories of events that took place at Burning Man, as told by participants. Submit your story here.