Preparing for AfrikaBurn

It’s the middle of the night when I lift my head of the pillow. I crawl out of bed on my hands and feet and look through the window of the narrow little room we sleep in. Through the cracks in the single glass window I can smell burned plastic. My eyes slowly adjust to the darkness and the vague outlines outside form recognisable shapes. A Landrover Defender is parked in the courtyard. The car sits heavy on its leafsprings and leans slightly backwards. I try to look through its windows, but I can’t make out very much since the inside is meticously packed top to bottom. Next to the car is a large open trailer. It has been packed to the brim. My hands slide over the wet window-frame and I have to wipe away the moister on the glass to see more. By now, my eyes are fully adjusted to the dark. Our car is parked in the corner of the courtyard, surrounded by walls and a gate. We are also a bit heavier packed, but you can hardly see this through our closed off windows.

I peer in the distance where see the glow of a small fire. The house we’re staying at is located next to a small “park”, more like a patch of grass. During the day people collect rubbish from the city, to burn on the grass at night to get a little warmth. It’s a very cold night and I hope they collected enough rubbish to stay warm. I let go of the window-frame and feel my way back to my pillow. My head falls onto it and I hope to catch my sleep again soon. After we approached the organisation of AfrikaBurn, Helga and I managed to be able to buy tickets through the re-selling of the tickets. Our enthusiasm went through the roof and we immediately changed our itinerary to accomodate this detour. We get the opportunity to stay with James and Yolandi in the days before AfrikaBurn. We met them when we stayed in Cape Town a few weeks earlier and they are also going to Burn. James and Yolandi are both industrial designers and they totally fit in hip Cape Town as we came to know and appreciate it.James takes this AfrikaBurn “project” very serious, as he does with all the projects they take on as a company. He puts his staff and workshop to use to make this a memorable festival for all of us. The fully packed trailer and cars are a result of this. We are taking everything to build a huge tent made out of fabric, wooden poles and rope, we are even making a kitchen and we’re taking 8x25L jerrycans with water. By bringing some stuff for the AfrikaBurn organisation, James managed to get us early access tickets. We leave one day before everyone else and this means we have one more day to make our camp before 12.000 people come hurdling in. 

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