Free your Wind and your Ass will Follow


Many people come to Freewind Post to find themselves. I don’t know why it takes them so long, it’s not very big.

It is, however, the site of the world-reknowned Free Wind Music Festival, and for a while after the Truce of Hyjal it was a little like New Dalaran is nowadays, but more affordable and much further from any swarms of undead. Freewind started out as a war camp against the centaur, then became a shaman’s meditative retreat, then during the lead-up to the end of the Legion War it was a rear assembly point for Horde supply trains. It was this period where they put in all the manitcore nests and navigated the flight routes from the Needles north to Durotar and the Barrens.

Freewind exploded in size. The music festival was born of the Tauren custom of incorporating musical performance and dance into pre-battle blessings for the groups moving north. After the war, many of the more talented performers returned to Freewind in the hopes of meeting old companions and collaborating anew on projects liberated from ritual formalities. As you come up the long rope bridge to Freewind, which is perched high above the bottom of the canyon, you’ll pass the famous “rolling rock”, an enormous boulder that rocks back and forth in the wind. From this landmark the musical collective took their name, and so now every year “rolling rock” music fans congregate before the Lunar Festival to throw one heck of a hoedown.


Above: A view of the Rolling rock, visible behind the rope bridge.

Like I said, people come here to find themselves. If they get tired of the very loud drum sounds, copious amounts of booze, and ongoing species-indiscriminate bonking (boy, are blood elves ever popular in Freewind), they can go on a supervised “Sapta hike” out into the more remote regions of the Needles. Then they pretend to be shamans.

This is embarrassing for all of us. Perhaps most of all, it’s embarrassing for the poor air and earth elementals that these lost souls inevitably end up trying to impress. If you’re considering entering into a totemic contract with a mortal, seeing a warrior reciting a bit of bad poetry, then puking and passing out from sapta poisoning is unlikely to induce you to offer any signing bonuses. I think the polyamorous atmosphere in Freewind has given some of these people the impression they can erect their totems any old where.

Which is actually really funny when they wander down to the big centaur camp and try their luck there. Those people are not big on free love or loud music! Giving them booze, on the other hand, does put their aim off, so as a last resort it’s not a bad notion.

Assuming they even make it. You may find yourself covering your nose while crossing the rope bridge because of the smell of corpses wafting up from below. Some people have taken these grim leavings as indication that the Tauren conduct horrific sacrifice rituals – or have just become really sick of tourists – but the sad truth is that one of the effects of all the uninhibited partying above is to seriously impair people’s perceptions of how much a fall is going to hurt.

The road down from the Post is long, it’s the middle of the night and that hot little number from Jin’thalor wants to go skinny dipping in the Grumpycloud hotsprings (see previous entry). A mixture of impatience, lust and intoxication makes that last stretch of bridge and spiralling trail a little too boring. That’s not the “rolling rock” way, you say to yourself. Which will make an admirable inscription on your tomb after you jump off the bridge. Please, be safe – always use a soulstone or have an ankh handy.

And if you wake up with a strange rash, go see a real shaman, not some amateur Forsaken acupuncturist who finds you “scientifically intriguing”.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 10th, 2010 at 11:14 am and is filed under Kalimdor, Travels. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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