I awoke in Darling’s apartment to the sounds of brunch being made. Evidently, it’s pretty customary when Darling and his roommate both have their beaus over for the four of them to break their fast together; I was privileged to join them. Coffee and conversation in dishabille – who could ask anything more of a morning? This was the most time I got to spend with Darling and company over the course of the weekend, and it is easily one of my favorite parts of this year’s Pride.
The fellas were all booked for a Pride cruise around the Sound for the next several hours, and I was going to investigate the Pride event on the Hill itself – Broadway was closed to traffic and lined with vendors. Obviously, I was wearing considerably more clothing than the fellas, because of course I was, but we dressed in similar amounts of time. Darling loaned me his sock garters for the occasion, because he’s a thoughtful friend and they were just the touch I needed. Off I went in my poncy big hat and toile skirt, into the fray.
The street fair was the same as any such event; vendors hawking wares, beer gardens by the score, a few stages hither and yon topped by beplumed drag queens. You know, the usual. I received countless compliments on my couture, which is as it should be – the French have a saying that no outfit is a success until a stranger compliments you on it. After walking the length of Broadway a few times, I was done with the event; it was time to visit my Aunt and Uncle Stone, way over across town. I believe I mentioned I’m not good at navigating in cities I don’t know well?
Yeah. I wound up taking entirely the wrong bus – to be fair, I was told that the bus would take me where I was going. No matter. I phoned the Stones and they helped me develop a work-around, and eventually made it to their charming home. When I arrived, I had just missed a crisis. They sit dogs, you see, and there had been an accident; one of the dogs had to be taken to the vet. Owners had to be contacted, etc. etc. – despite these troubles, which they handled with aplomb, they were graciousness itself, as ever. I sat with Auntie Trin while Uncle Gwydion took the poor injured pup to the vet, and we smoked countless cigarettes and discussed wondrous things. When Gwydion got home, cocktails commenced, and we sat and chatted some more. Eventually, I realized I had probably better make my way back to the Hill – who knows when the buses stop running in town? Not I! – and I promptly got on the right bus, going in the wrong direction. I eventually realized my mistake, and an hour or two later got to my destination.
I was looking for Pony, where Darling was dancing that night; after wandering a bit – for far less time than the night before – I finally found it, and was promptly phoned by Auntie Robbie, who was down at C. C. Attle’s – which didn’t have a cover. Reluctantly – I really had wandered for miles the night before – I agreed to trudge down there to meet him. Once we finally made it inside, we took a few turns around the room, caught up – it’s been ages since we’ve seen one another – and promptly decided to leave. Robbie wanted to go to Pony – he’s never been – and despite the fact that I was really quite tired and Darling’s apartment was only a few blocks away and it really would have been much more sensible to just retire for the evening, I agreed to go back up to Pony. On the way, I ran into Jarel yet again, and he and his friend promptly dropped their plans to join us, and go see Christopher dance.
We merry few trekked back up, running into acquaintances and trouble, which is one of my favorite parts of Pride – literally everyone is there. It’s impossible not to run into people you know. Eventually, we arrived at our destination. I spent most of our time there in the beer garden, smoking and looking out-of-place – which I was. Pony is rather butch and scruffy, and daintily dressed Edwardian Ladies aren’t quite the clientele they’re going for. I was also displeased to be mistaken for a pirate several times while there.
Eventually, we hit Bar Time, and the crowd began to disperse for the night. Darling and the fellas were going to an after-party, which clearly wouldn’t have been my scene. I toddled back to his place and called it a night; when I awoke, despite it being the main day of the festivities, I felt a little burnt out, and decided to give the parade and the festival a miss. I shoved my feathers and fripperies back in my bag, and began the long trip back home.