Saturday was really our last day at Burning Man, since we were going to try to leave really early on Sunday morning, so there was lots to choose from to do. I chose to go off on a bike ride on my own in the relatively cool morning hours, leaving Isis to go do her own thing for a while. I biked around the playa for a while and saw some more art, but found myself really drawn back to the Temple, so I biked over there. (Side note: It was at this point I decided to name my bike “Shifty”, since it had the temperamental habit of randomly shifting into a new gear without provocation. But since everything there was so flat, I didn’t really mind, and in fact found it kind of entertaining.) I found a bench on one of the walkways connecting the main temple to one of the smaller outbuildings and sat there for a while, hanging out and being quiet with myself, trying to process some of the things that had come up over the last few days. I wrote in my journal, and eventually on the Temple itself. This time I wrote on the Temple “WE ARE ALL CONNECTED” along with a little drawing, and “NO ONE CAN MAKE ME FEEL INFERIOR WITHOUT MY CONSENT...AND I DO NOT CONSENT”. I wanted those concepts to burn up and send opposite messages to the universe—one was a wish for something that would come into being (the communal realization that we are all connected) and one was a wish for release (from the hold that others’ expectations have had over me). I also tucked one of my little freak flag cards into a crack in the wall, so that it would come into being in a big and hot and flame-tastic kind of way.
After that I came back to camp and shifted into work mode—we broke down and packed up as much of our camp as we could, and organized things for a quick getaway in the morning (put things in the car, moved our car, made sure the way was clear, etc.) That took most of the afternoon, though of course we took chillout breaks. Then we had dinner and got dressed in our final costumes (Isis was dressed as Isis with beautiful gold wings, and I was the Silver Supernova with my fabulous silver cape and silver sequin-and-fringe skirt). Then we headed out to go see the Man burn—the one big event that the whole city was built around, and that (most) everyone was excited about.
As we headed to the Man, I looked around and saw a really cool effect—practically the whole city was heading towards the Man, and since everyone was lit up in some way (both pedestrians and bikes, in addition to the art cars of course) there was this interesting kind of arterial pulsing effect, where from all sides rushes of light and movement were moving together, converging on the same point. There was a palpable feeling of excitement and anticipation but generally everyone seemed pretty peaceful and calm about the whole thing. Isis and I found a spot to spread out a blanket and sit down to watch, and though we chatted a bit with our neighbors, we mostly spent the pre-burn time appreciating each other (I feel like we have a super close and supportive bond now that we never would have had if it weren’t for Burning Man) and appreciating the transformational week we’d had so far, and talking about what we wanted to release and burn away (fear, anxiety, safety, smallness, expectations, and other stuff I don’t remember) along with the Man.