I’m back home from Brighton safe and sound and with a hatful of happy memories and mostly good experiences. Loads of pics too, some of which I’ll put up on here. It was a great weekend on the whole and I enjoyed it a lot more this year for the reasons I outlined in my last entry (Knowing people, knowing myself better this time round).
The journey down was a bit rough as we didn’t set off till late afternoon, meaning having to fight our way through the M25 rush hour traffic past Heathrow (always a joy) and had a few hairy moments where having sat in traffic going nowhere for 10 minutes in full sun the dashboard in Rebecca’s car lit up like a Christmas tree because the car was overheating. A few panicky moments getting over to the slow lane just in case we had to ditch ensued but luckily it went away once we got moving again and got a bit of air flowing. Once on the M23 it was clear sailing and we pretty well got to the hotel, checked in, had dinner there and crashed out for the evening.
Saturday morning came and we got up and ready for breakfast, Rebecca being nervous as hell as she’s about as keen as big groups of people and busy places as I am and has never been to anything like this before. Both of us had been anticipating the hotel being awash with trans people but until then we’d not seen anyone else. Rebecca had just remarked on this when Lisa ambled by and said hi. Hehehe 🙂
After breakfast and with the parade not going until 11.30 we took the time to have a wander around by ourselves, took a few pictures and marvelled at the architecture of the Royal Pavilion and took some pics
Unfortunately then came the one bit of the weekend that wasn’t so great.Minding our own business and comparing pics we were approached by some scruffy man who looked like someone had already given him a thick lip for giving it some gob. He approaches Rebecca
“Excuse me ladies, do you have any spare change”
I look up from what I was doing just in time for her to reply she hadn’t. This bloke then gets right in my face and turns on us
“Well you’re a man and so are you, you’re both in drag!”
I promptly call him out right in front of a bunch of tourists and loudly proclaim that I thought he was really a dick and walk off as haughtily as I could manage while he’s not going on about how I wasn’t being very nice and he didn’t have a problem with us. I yelled at him to get lost and carried on walking while he’s now kicking off some way behind us and wanting to duke it out with us. I was shaking with rage, Rebecca spent a few minutes helping me calm down, well away from this idiot. This isn’t the first time I’ve had trouble while out and about and not the first time I’ve called someone out for it but this time I was furious as Rebecca was involved. I’m fairly mellow these days but I’ll go full bantam if someone’s giving my girl grief, I won’t have it and I’ve had too many years of suffering silently to put up with it any more.
Rebecca took me down to the beach to cam down and then deal with the inevitable issue of getting stones in our shoes (how do I even manage this when I was wearing sandals for goddess sake?) and then headed for the Marlbrough as that was where we were all meeting up. This is where we both got nervous because of the social anxiety issues we both have. It was great though, I met up with old friends, and then with others I’ve been in contact with online for ages (as has Rebecca) and finally met up with
As you can see, there were just a few of us this year and once the pride march got underway it became clear just how much bigger the event had become this year. The organisers of Trans Pride reckon 4500 people turned up this year, and so we ended up taking over the marina as we marched to Brunswick park for the pride party.
We weren’t at the party for long, having spent much of the parade with Ruth who had driven half way across the country to day trip, do the parade and then go see a mutual friend of ours (Sarah) who was at Nuffield hospital down the road, recovering from her genital reconstruction surgery. She wasn’t short of visitors given most of her Twitter contacts list must have been in Brighton for the weekend.
Ruth (pictured left) has an amazing sense of humour, blending the best of trans and geek humour as we chatted to Sarah in the hospital. Thanks to her I shall never look at hexadecimal code, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings and The Beatles in the same way again. With her and her love of sound equipment, expect Lucy In The Sky With Dilators to hit the Top 40 sometime in the near future.
Having done a huge amount of walking and gotten some souvenirs for the weekend Rebecca and I returned to the hotel, had dinner and crashed out for the night, before doing the breakfast routine, checking out of the hotel and spending a couple of hours at the Marlborough chatting to a group of friends before we made the long drive home again.
Of course the weekend wouldn’t have been complete with some silliness on our part, between my alternate wardrobe choices and Rebecca’s novel new way of not losing the car keys
All in all it was a fantastic and memorable weekend, and yes I was smiling a hell of a lot more this year than last. I have plenty to smile about right now even if my own journey is far from over. Even so the weekend caught up with us in the end and Sunday night was spent propping up the sofa and playing Diablo II together before going back to work the next day.
Here’s hoping Trans Pride next year will be even better for us all 😀