Category: vacation

Burning Magic and Love

Last year it was all about magic.  The trip down the rabbit’s hole, as I like to describe it, has been anticipated every day since I discovered the burner community.  Last year was without a doubt magical.  The lesson learned was finding belief in myself, in the powers that lies within and all around.  I felt that magic comes from a special feeling, but its has to be brought out.  Magic exists intrinsically, but it has to be manifested, it has to be sought out and forced out into a constructed being.

Last year was a very exquisite introduction to an alternative lifestyle, one that puts moral values over monetary ones, one that puts imagination before practicality, that puts friendships before convenience.

This year, it was all about love.  You go into it having some set of expectations, but also knowing that you have no idea what to expect.  It’s never the same, something (actually everything) always changes.  This burner concept is a very fluid environment, so preparation only takes you so far.

I thought that this year would reestablish that magical feeling of rediscovering imagination, but it that was not lesson that I learned this merry-go-around time.  This year, I felt the love of the temporary community and spaces that we made.  I soaked up every second of the town, of the merriment, of the place and space that we created.  I felt special to bond with people through a shared effort, through tribulation, struggle, problems, shared adventures, true connection.

This year helped me reestablished that I absolutely love feeding people, and when it comes down to it, that is really the one thing that gives me the greatest joy, sharing food.  Eating is the backbone of everything we do.  Nothing can be created or enjoyed without the energy to do it.

It made me realize how important it is to have special connection with a person, how much you can learn from a community, how everyone adds values to your life, how relying on people around you is not a weakness, it makes you stronger.

This year, it was all about love.  My heart feels shiny, in fact I think it’s glowing

Intent

I am looking forward to a break in the action, to geting away from this crazy life for a few glorious, stolen days-  but mostly I am looking forward to a new wave of inspiration and gaining a different angle of perception.

I am looking forward to escaping the alarm clock- but mostly I am looking forward to perceiving time as a feeling instead of as a rigid measurement.

I am looking forward to summer dresses- but mostly I am looking forward to wearing clothes for the purpose of fun over the purpose of business casual.

To Do List

Things to do before vacation in one month and five days from today, presented in no particular order:

1. Design, test, and execute dessert menu for new restaurant

2. Train two people, one at La Sirena, one at El Che

3.  Hire a person for El Che

4. Make two dinners worth of food for 30 people, store and freeze

5. Decorate paddle boat in the “mystical creatures” theme

6.Talk to Shortbread about campsite layout

7. Stretch daily

8. Don’t Panic

9. Plan birthday party at the house for this weekend

10. Weed the garden and plant all the seedlings

11.  Revamp menu at La Sirena

12. Look up yoga studios close to work

13. Gather supplies for 5 days camping trip

14. Clean my bedroom

 

Turning the Tables

I complain about the negatives of kitchen life and the hardship that go along with this career path.  I don’t need to sum up all the drawbacks and inherent wrongness of this job line, so I will consolidated all my complaining into a list for those who may still be in the dark: it generally sucks all around, it’s hard and nobody ever says good job, no vacation time, no sick days (unless you are in the hospital, and deep cuts do not always counts, depends on if it’s a holiday in which case the answer is always no), fire, very sharp knives, very hot things that want to burn you, heavy things, competitive environment, egotism, low pay sometimes even no pay, no respect, sometimes you get yelled at like you are a child misbehaving, incompetent coworkers who get paid the same, small working environment, no privacy, constant harassment, you have to fight for the tools you need, you have to clean a lot, no sitting down, if you do get to eat that will be while standing.

So instead of further complaining, we are going to change the hands of power.  People need to eat, that demand will never go away.  Beyond job security, the stability is intrinsic.  I can take a break, walk away, say fuck you hungry people I am going to be a writer!  I will break your heart and you will hate me.  But when I say, hey, I am back in town, want something to eat?  You will not say no, you will not refuse my cool offer of a hot meal.

I want to travel everywhere on this great and green planet.   This wish is very conflicting with working in a restaurant.  But what if I could cook from home, making delicious and healthy meals, sell enough product so that I can give myself 2 months off a year?  I could be private chef for any special occasion.  I will be your very own caterer.  I will bring my own pots and knives, and I will be polite and cook and serve.  I will wash the dishes and you will pay me a good amount of money because it will be very nice.  Think about wearing whatever you want while you eat a fancy meal, instead of those stuffy clothes.

Sounds crazy, but you don’t know how good I am at being poor.  I have been refining my skill for decades now.  Food for motivation, your reality is what you make it.

Unicorn Lights

I  miss the bright neon lights hemming the lake, twinkling unicorn colors under the dark Michigan sky.  The glassy lake reflects the rainbow glow, buffing the already-round edges of the Christmas light camps strung around the lucky lake.  I was so peaceful gazing at the camps full of happiness, joy, wonder, love, and curiosity from the opposite side of the lake.  In the cool seclusion of the dark night, I look across the lake at the slowly changing kaleidoscope scenery, feeling the energy but taking a break from the action.  Everything and anything you want is there, you can have it.  It is such a wonderful feeling to be able to join the party, or just take it all in under the expansive sky full of stars.  There is nothing more to want because it is perfect here.  This was a magical moment, where everything was perfect and there was nothing to desire.

Whimsical Nature

To behave like a child again.  To believe in magic.  To let go of time, forget about money, loose all sense of shame and embarrassment, but still take care of oneself.  Radical self reliance is the concept.  Everyone gives and everyone shares, but you are expected to take care of your basic needs and try to help out anyone when the opportunity arises.  You make sure you are fed and sheltered and happy, then you explore a world where imagination and fun are fueled by fire and energy.  Its a magical place.  Magic and connection exist here.  I felt magic and delight come together in an adult playground.  There are swings that are built tall so that you can swing as high as you did when you were a child.  There are all type of swings:  long pendulums, various bench swings, a large circle swing suspended from the middle at the top that sways slowly in the wind, dancing to the constant drum beat from the loud camps, another circle swing, this one built for just one, hidden in the forest.  There were all multitudes of hammocks, along the shore and floating on a barge in the lake.  I got to swing in a tutu with a long scarf dragging behind me, as I sway high and twirl around the heavy chains, with my toes pointed and legs fashioned in sweeping grace.  I also got to sway in my Indian princess dress, feeling like queen.  Magical.

The swinging was one of my favorite parts.  Another was a giant, throbbing pink heart that you could sit in.  The heart was made out of thin wood with 4 cut-outs ranging from red to light pink.  Behind each heart were rope lights that light up singularly, blinking backwards toward the largest inner heart.  Afar in the darkness, the heart looked like it was throbbing.  Behind the largest heart, there was a spot for two people to sit facing each other.  There were two heart shaped pillows for each person, one for your back and out for your head. It was very peaceful in there.  I had three great moments in there.  One of the best moments was when that magical man appeared out of nowhere just to catch my eye.  He light a cigarette and in the space between the cut-out hearts, his eyes smirked a fiery hello, greeted with my refreshing glaze.  That twinkle is the magic that I seek.  Its more than a sparkle, its a twinkle, a small yet hot spark.

The flame.  Everywhere the flame.  The cumulative burn is on the last night, when this giant, beautiful wooden structure is set ablaze, a literal burning of ideas and concepts that are your own personal restraint, a concept that can free one’s mind to behave again like a child.  To not be burdened by stature, looks, dress code, financial status, popularity, skin or gender or sexuality, hair type, shoe size, breast size, pant size, style, trend level, emotional problems.  Its less complicated then that.  Its like when you were 6 and you wanted to wear mismatched cloths, your friends were all in the neighborhood and nobody had any idea what their parents did for money.  Except here it is better, because you know who you are and how to take care of oneself.  Its magical.

Aside from the magnificent and epic burning of the effigy, fire is a constant theme throughout the camps. It is embodied in many shapes, but mostly coming hot and fast through iron pipes.  Some spit fire balls high into the air, the heat being felt strongly below.  Some are laced close to the ground, circling the dance floor.  Some are the top of an art sculpture.  Another interpretation of flame was slinking along a black ceiling,  creating a fire flower affect.  There were fires in iron barrels that had stencils cut out identifying the camp.  Of course there was a fire pit at the camp ground, which was the base for our camp home.

I felt a smirk of magic there, and I hope to keep some of that feeling here in the real world.  I left that magic man in the fairy tale, because its best to end at the last page in the story.  I will take home the simplicity and the whimsical, the content to not want anymore that what the imagination can provide.