I had some fantastic adventures this summer that I wanted to share, where I could laugh, play, learn and let go of anything I felt like I had to be or do.

Burning Man
Most recently, I went to Burning Man for the first time. I loved the vast, expansive and unbounded atmosphere and landscape. I was invited into Crossroads, a camp who performed a professionally produced 4-hour live music show every evening.

Embrace on fire, Burning Man 2014

Embrace on fire, Burning Man 2014

It took me a couple of days to acclimate to being in the harsh desert landscape and to enjoy the circus of anything-goes activity. But, after watching Embrace burn at sunrise while dogpiled in the top of an art car in the deep playa while our camp band played below and parachutists flew in, I am undeniably hooked.

Something that also struck me was how people burned everything they built; how after putting so much effort into creating and building a vision, they watched it burn within minutes. I’ve hung onto past projects, business launches and failures, and awkward endings that I’ve invested my time into and the metaphor of watching creations burn up after they’ve had their moment felt very powerful to me.

Nature is clearly in charge on the playa with wo(man) a respectful partcipant. I liked feeling my humanness within the mass of other burners. I was also surprised how I could survive on such little sleep! I had no idea I could go to bed at 5am multiple mornings in a row and continue to be moderately functional. I would totally go back!!

Me at Burning Man 2014, photo by Anja Epkes


Camp Grounded
I went to adult summer camp in June — so much fun — pure and unadulterated with no substances except coffee and kombucha! I ran around and acted silly for 4 days at a Boyscout camp set amidst old growth redwoods in the Anderson Valley near Napa. Screen Shot 2014-09-27 at 5.23.14 PMWe checked in our cell phones into an old bunker, called each other by made up nicknames and couldn’t talk at all about work. I was “Peace Eagle” for those days. I slept outside in a 3-sided bunk with other women, learned how to make candles, solar carved into wood, painted pet rocks, meditated in an outdoor liviScreen Shot 2014-09-27 at 5.23.40 PMng room, took an analog photography class, typed out a heartwarming note to a new friend, played Ultimate Frisbee and forgot about anything negative associated with my daily life outside of camp. If this sounds like fun, GO!

 

Jerry’s Retreat
In May I attended a 4-day invitation only retreat where I felt very honored to be asked to participate. Jerry Michalski has been gathering people once a year for the last 17 years to discuss huge, world-advancing ideas. A friend on the first day said, “big ears, small mouth” and that’s the approach I took. I listened a lot, contributed some, and soaked in sparring dialogue from experts in the fields of education, technology, music, and learning design – hours of intellectual stimulation, big ideas, and inspiration.

 

 

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