Leukemia and Burning Man

Today I read an article by Joslyn Hamilton about why she would never go to Burning Man. I wanted to make a comment but, just like many things, one must sign up in order to respond and I got frustrated with the process. So, since I already had my comment created I am posting it here because of it's relationship to my diagnosis. If you would like to read the post I am referring to, you can find it here:

Why I Will Never Go to Burning Man

(And I would be happy if you want the author or commenters to see this post, you can make my life easier by posting a link to here)

Here it what I wrote in response to Joslyn's article (and some of the early commenters) :

All the points brought up are the same reasons I used to say that I wouldn't want to go to Burning Man... and then some. I'm old (67), poverty stricken, and have Leukemia.

I would like to point out, however, that it's clear a person cannot make a judgement on something about which they do not know. Yes, yes... but here I go anyways....

We presume desert is bad, camping is yucky, bathroom facilities are limited, etc. etc. all based upon limited sources of info. Ever since my son first started to go to Burning Man, being the nosy Mom I am, I have investigated and formed many opinions about the event.

It's HOT
It's WEIRD (okay, wait... I like weird)
People DIE there!

Yup! All of those things, and more.

As the years have gone by and I have learned of the many options, I've come to the conclusion that even for me, Burning Man might be an "experience". What my take on it will be... I don't know.

It's like trying some rare fruit or vegetable for the first time. You don't know until you taste it! Without really investigating beyond the barriers one has created, one cannot know the flavor of the place.

A few things I've learned over the years of my son's "sabbaticals off the grid":

You can take your own bathroom type facilities with you.
You can take your own "hotel" with you... vis a vis RV.
You can take your own cuisine with you.
If you are used to others providing all that stuff for you and you can afford it, bring your staff along and you will have your daily needs met.
You don't have to go hang out in the crowds.
There is plenty of room to be by yourself. They playa is BIG!
There is even plenty of quiet space if you don't wish to be bombarded with music. The playa is BIG!
You don't have to take drugs or barter.
You don't have to convert or have a spiritual experience. The ones who are fanatical about it are just like the fringes of other belief systems in "regular" society.
If you behave yourself and live wisely, your chances of dying there are less than at home. Emergency medical care is available.
Like any vacation experience you will come back with some new impressions in your memory banks.
Your take on it will be based upon your own personal conceptions. You can enjoy yourself or not. It's your choice.

Let me qualify all those statements with the fact that I have never been to Burning Man, so I really don't know exactly what it is like. So, my comments about it are just about as valid as those of  Joslyn Hamilton's. Though, I believe we are both entitled to our beliefs.

My mind is now changed enough that it's on my Bucket List. In fact, it's just about the only thing on my list.

If they had a "Make a Wish" foundation for adults with cancer, I would sign up and go to Burning Man with all the necessary accoutrements to make my stay there enjoyable.

Enjoying myself is a choice I will make when I get there. I can always leave if I want to.

One last thing. Without understanding the cultural history of burning an effigy in a tribal situation, one might not "get" why burning the man is significant.

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