I didn’t know what to expect, meeting 1,000 women in the desert. I met women who were crying as they drove into the site. I met women who were laughing. I met women who couldn’t stop talking about their adventures crossing the country. I met women who had driven 500 miles in one day to be near Bouse, AZ to camp with 1,000 women at the WRTR. I even met some women who follow the blog ! (Thanks for introducing yourselves, Susan, Alice and Abagail!)
I arrived a week early to volunteer. And I did. I strung out police tape (we were camped next to some Land Trust land that we couldn’t even step on), picked up trash, directed vehicles and hung around as vehicle after vehicle poured into the desert.
No photos were allowed. Too many women fleeing from abusive situations. I did get a few pics of Lilith.
Most of the days were spent helping others. Much laughter, much learning, much joy. The level of confidence grew, the locked trailer was opened, women learned how to poop in a bucket, set up solar, change a tire, wash in public, treat the land with respect, and enjoy the time on the road, in the desert or the mountains.
During the event I was the PA system operator (thanks to help from Mary at my side), so heard and saw much. There was a large contingent of women in wheelchairs, women over 80, and artists and musicians, and women who loved nature, and women who hated cigarette smoke. There were women in huge RV’s. There were women living in their Prius. There were women living in class B vans. There were women of color, women without color, women with canes, women in hiking boots.
It was all free and run by volunteers. The sense of empowerment was overwhelming.
I don’t think I will do it again, too many people, but am so glad I went this year. Thank you Suanne and Phyllis and Bob.