20 of 365
On My Way Home
A lot of people say "Welcome Home" when you arrive to Burning Man. As much as I love the place, Burning Man is not my home. It's an incredible experience. One that has kept me going back ever since I first went there 6 years ago. So much so, that pretty much each year, I've found a way to get there earlier and stay later. This year, I will continue that tradition. 13 days almost a full two weeks.
Games and Such
One of my contributions this year, will be providing a couple of "mid-way" games, specifically a Jacob's Ladder and a duck pond to try to hook a rubber ducky. In fact, I need to get moving and pick up the rest of the pieces for both of those as well as so much more.
Yikes, shopping a go-go
19 of 365
Who Turned Off the Lights?
Yes very corny and I'm sure said by several million people at the same time which is rather impressive.
On my way to Burning Man, I decided to take a slight detour to go somewhere epic to watch the solar eclipse. I found that Casper, Wyoming was one of the best places to view this sort of once-in-a-lifetime experience. (I know there's another one in 7 years and I saw one when I was kid)
1700 miles later and I pulled into town with a few hours to spare. I drove past Main Street and the festivities looked a bit overwhelming.
I ended up at an amazing local dive bar, Frosty's Bar and Grill where more times than not the cash register ends up with more money from the employees both working and not, than customers. True story, that's what the bartender told me. She was quite a hoot, but came in a distant second to the woman, an off-duty bartender who was selling t-shirts out side the bar. In fact, she was the reason I ended up there. As soon as I parked and got out of my truck she hollered over to me and waved me in.
I must admit, it was very impressive; the eclipse not the bar. Everything went dark, the temperature dropped considerably and then .....
Back on the road, but not before waiting for 30 minutes at the nearest gas station because I wasn't the only person thinking fueling up before getting in crazy traffic might be a good idea.
Unfortunately the credit card reader broke and well .....
Traffic ---Seems Like I Can't Escape It
August 21 at 1:34pm · So much traffic; had I known I would have crawled back into my cocoon and went to sleep
But I didn't so I sat and sat. My back was killing me, but I was stuck. The road was too narrow for me to turn around and take another route. Finally I made it to a gas station fueled up and looked at the line of traffic that went on for as far as your eye could see in both directions.
The Road Less Taken
Then I spied an smaller country road and as it turned out, it was the most direct route to Burning Man.
Ha Ha; off I went; see ya later suckers.
6 hours later, I was tucking myself in at a rest stop in Coalville, Utah, just shy of Salt Lake City
18 of 365
Never Say Never...Again
I promised myself that I wouldn't do another cross-country road trip. After doing it two times a year for several years in a row, it was taking a serious toll on my health; my back specifically.
And then I started down a slippery slope, by allowing myself that road-trip if I took my time and didn't put in those killer long days.
That was the plan this time around.
Then those little inconveniences and unplanned diversions that make up life came into play.
Suddenly or really not so suddenly, I ran out of time and am making up for it by leaving several days later than planned and thereby, once again driving long hours with little rest.
I was still packing my luggage at the end of the day yesterday after loading or rather overloading my truck and trailer. So much so that the little bed I have in my trailer pod is full of luggage and gear that I will need to rearrange to have a tiny little space where I should be able to catch a few ZZZs.
I also skipped the shower I had desperately needed after working all day in the brutal summer Atlanta heat. It's nicknamed Hotlanta for a reason. And that is why I typically do everything I can to avoid being there in the summer.
Burn, Baby Burn
I also have said that I would take a break from Burning Man. I originally told Cindy that once would be enough and now on my sixth consecutive journey out there, we all realized that was never going to be a reality. In fact, one of the many reasons we are looking at real estate in Mammoth Lakes, CA, is it's proximity to Black Rock Desert, around 4-5 hours away.
Finally, with a great deal of help from Skye and patience from Cindy, I got the everything and more loaded up and hit the road.
I drove as long as I could manage, which was shy of what I wanted to do; in hopes of making todays drive a little less painful. Oh well.
Got to run, grab that shower, some breakfast and hit that lonely highway I love so much.
17 of 365
I Owe, I Owe, So Not to Work I Go....
Actually I am sort of on my way to work; back to work in California.
But first I have TTITD (That Thing In The Desert) also known as Burning Man.
But before that I have that thing in Nebraska also known as the solar eclipse.
And the morning I'm supposed to leave, actually several days after I was supposed to leave. But who can keep track.
Anyways, I go down to unlock the padlock that is got all the stuff in the truck cabled up and secure and guess what????
The combo didn't work.
I tried it several times to no avail. But again, I'm tired; haven't had any caffeine. So I called up to Skye who was apparently up until 5 am; doing what God knows what; ....teen-agers.
She comes down with little slits for where her eyes normally are and heads downstairs.
Crossing My Fingers
Combo didn't work; but my grinder did.
On ward and ....
Realities Setting In
I had planned to be on the road by now, but several things happened.
It started raining when we were in the middle of loading. My largest trunk is leather bound and not in the best condition to begin with. After leaving it on our balcony once when it barely drizzled, it practically disingrated.
I ended up drying it as best as I could and then slathering it with leather conditioner and massaging it in for hours, I certainly didn't want to have to do that again.
I also promised Cindy that I wouldn't leave the house a mess.
Time Is On My Side
For now at least;
I plan to view the solar eclipse which takes place around noon on August 21st at "Carhenge" , located near Alliance, Nebraska, which is 1,361 miles away, basically 21 hours of driving. I have made it from Los Angeles to Montreal which is 2800 miles in distance in less than 3 days and in the winter. But that took driving well over the speed limit for hours on hours and driving back to back 20 hour days with just a couple of hours of sleep. I was younger and even crazier then. It's not a feat I care to repeat.
I've never had allergies in my life.
That is until now. And it is kicking the life out of me. If I take medicine, regardless of how non-drosy, day-time, etc. etc. the label might say, if I take an allergy pill it shuts me down or at the very least has renders me to crawling around, napping and basically waiting for it to wear off, at which point the blood shot eyes, sneezing, coughing, hacking to the point of almost throwing up kicks back in.
I took Prince for a walk and saw the cause of my misery.
Our local park had planted dozens of local grasses. They are beautiful to behold. But to me they are like kryptonite.
Usually I am not in Atlanta at this time of year. I am typically up in Mammoth Lakes, California for Skye's Shakespeare camp, but since she has outgrown that, literally she in now too old to attend, but there is a chance that she may decide to go as a camp counselor, but honestly I think she has left that part of her life behind, much to my regret. It was always a good excuse for me to escape the heat and humidity and now I realize the hay fever of Atlanta.
I decided that I've spent enough time in Atlanta. It's been an interesting experience to be sure. I really can't handle being land-locked. The humidity is a beast, I haven't been here during the summer before. The traffic is beginning to rival Los Angeles. That all said, I've done a lot since being here.
I joined the IATSE Local here, 479.
I've made life long friends.
I ran the most attended 10K on the planet, as well as a Marathon, which by the way, was the hardest one I've ever done, "Heat, Hills, and Humidity" is it's motto and it lives up to it.
I'm sure I'll come back to visit.
Cindy is staying; she's got lots of work here. The reason we all ended up here to begin with. Skye will be bi-coastal. She's going to be taking special effects make-up classes here, but she also misses the West Coast and friends.
There will be several adventures along the way back.
I am heading to Carhenge in Nebraska to view the solar eclipse. I am on the fence as to check of my 50 in 50; #37--Visit Stonehenge If at the end of the year I haven't made it over to the other side of the pond, I'll probably put a line through it, but I want to see the real McCoy.
And of course, there is TTITD, aka Burning Man.
I'm returning there with my Atlanta Circus friends. Helping out with our camp decor and mid-way games has been taking up the lion's share of my time.
Which reminds me, I need to wrap this up and get back to work.
Too Much to Do--Too Little Time
Packing to travel can be very stressful and takes a goodly amount of planning. When the traveling takes you to theme camp at Burning Man that will certainly add to it.
When you are also planning to relocate at the end of your traveling; it is really more like moving. Except if you're the only one in the family doing it.
Yes, I tend to live a rather complicated life.
Cindy has work in Atlanta for a significant amount of time. I have work in Los Angeles. Skye has enrolled in classes in Atlanta.
And we are all going to Burning Man with a camp on the Esplanade (the main thoroughfare)
I will be performing, hopefully juggling fire swords, although I am way behind in my practice.
Skye will be performing with her fire hoop and maybe more.
Oh and I will also be setting up, maintaining and overseeing a couple of "mid-way" games; a Jacob's Ladder and Fishing for Ducks
More to follow....
Jon Danniells is an adventurer and traveler, a teacher and student, a husband and a father, a cook and a farmer, a "week-end warrior" (very amateur athlete) and has not earned any money on these labors of love.When I googled myself what showed up first was my IMDB listing, which is basically a resume for my 20 and then some year career in film, for which I fortunately do get paid.