Burning Man is over for another year. Some people I know have gone several times now and other people have been year after year for many many years. I won’t ever be one of those people. There is a very real possibility that I will go back one day but there is too much of the world out there to see for me to go back to the same place, spending lots of money and using all my vacation time every year.
It’s changing and evolving which is inevitable for anything that’s been running for decades. Now with social media and a much broader awareness of the festival globally, it will only continue to attract different people who bring different experiences to the burn. The burn is created by those who attend so as those people change, so will the burn. For me this year it became clear that it was mainstream when I saw footage of Katy Perry falling off a segway in the dust and when I hear that there was mobile phone signal in the desert this year. Part of the appeal and the original ethos is escaping commercialism and every day life.
There’s nothing critical in my analysis of the burn. It is an incredible experience and one I treasure. It was sad however to read that Justin Alexander whom I’ve interviewed recently on Aussielicious had his camera, backpack, sleeping bag and even his passport stolen while at Burning Man last week. So much for radical self reliance.
One amazing thing to come out of the festival each year is my friend Vincent’s video. This year he’s put it together officially for AWOL and done an amazing job yet again.