Gentle Guidance

Gentle Guidance for the Summer of 2022

Dear Albert,
Here’s some gentle guidance for you this Summer. This Summer looks like it will have a lot of the fun things you’ve enjoyed over the past many years. Music festivals. Music camps. Reunions and camping. Here are some things you might want to keep in mind which might make your time more enjoyable and fruitful. I share this with you after having participated in many 4-5 day events in the past and now with some wisdom garnered for an interesting 2+ years of the pandemic. OK, here goes.
1. It’s not going to be the same as the last time you went. It already isn’t 🙂 So, give up your expectation for that and plan for something completely new.
2. Bring it. As always the experience is going to be better for you and others if you bring your best self. And also bring something extra for others 🙂  Burning Man’s gifting economy is a great model – prepare in advance by planning for your needs – some great snacks, sunscreen, and just the right thing to make you comfortable and happy. And then bring a couple of things to make someone else’s experience a little more sparkly. Those colorful sunglasses. Almonds. Healthy things and colorful things. An extra pair or two of guitar strings and some picks often bring a smile to a musician’s face 🙂
3. Breathe in and breathe out. When you’re interacting with anyone who is putting on an event – be kind. Be kinder. They are operating under situations that are in flux and they are likely stressed. Don’t add to that stress.  Make the experience better by trying to solve whatever issue you’re having yourself. Then ask a fellow attendee. Then ask a volunteer/staff person. Here’s some guidance you once wrote. – be the host of the event. Take responsibility for your own positive experience and help others, too. Open doors. Pick up trash. Don’t beep your horn to lock your car – care for the ambiance.
4. Lastly – Covid. Take care of yourself and know that others are doing their best to take care of themselves. Be gentle in this area. Everyones’ hackles are up, but generally, people probably are fine with explaining what their approach is – be prepared to listen. If you slow down a little bit that will help with this particular dance.
5. Take it easy on yourself. Rest. Take things slowly. Take your time getting there and enjoy the ride. Get to things early – for many reasons (just try it :).  It’s not the destination, it’s the journey. Oh yeah – be here now!
Have fun out there.


PS – for WDSers coming from out of town – Portland has changed some in recent years. I highly recommend not leaving anything visible in your car. Also, keep an eye on your things – this is true everywhere, but it’s worth repeating.

PPS – for guitarists – change your strings if you are able – a set of fresh strings makes it better for everyone – especially you! Also, tuning is a great thing. Keep on tuning!