This week I was in Shanghai for a trade show. In order to get an airfare my employer was willing to pay for, I was obliged to stay through the weekend after. Looking around for things to do, Time Out Shanghai pointed me at the Shanghai Pride website.
So lunch today was at the Pink BBQ, one of the opening events of the sixth year of Shanghai Pride:
The Pink BBQ on Shanghai Pride’s opening day
I’ve managed to miss a couple of London Pride events, and this was a great reminder of the amazing buzz at events like these. I was pleased I had the chance to be part of this one!
Something odd is happening in Russia at the moment. Thank you google for a good perspective with my searches this morning:
Business took me to the San Francisco Bay Area last week. Unusually, I had some time to relax before the meeting started on the Monday, so I took a trip to the Castro.
I’ve been taking pictures of this flag since 2002, and I still have a big smile on my face the first time I spot it as I approach.
I wonder how many times it’s needed replacing since 2002? It still looks as fresh.
(And a P.S. on my last post. I ended up cycling every workday in April. I skipped the weekends, mostly because they were so wet!)
Thank you Jelte for the £10 you owed me. Betting against a gay man on male TV and film star identities wasn’t your finest move!
After a quick stopover for Jelte and Lorin’s birthdays, last night me and Richard went to the LGMC’s annual summer show: Bad Boys.
It would feel odd to go to a London Gay Men’s Chorus show and not blog about it, although I am left fairly speechless. They were fabulous, putting together a really entertaining show. I always enjoy the sight of a stage full of gay men smiling!
Apparently it was their musical director’s last show, which made for an emotional ending, and a rousing encore. He will be a hard act to follow!
If you’ve not seen them and you fancy an evening of high quality music, performed with pure enthusiasm, you should get tickets to their next show!
Yesterday’s parade was lots of fun. We had an early start (6am!) to help organise the volunteer stewards for the parade. As last year, I was looking after the arrivals, and forming them in to teams. Some teams looked like they gelled for the day – I saw them wandering around together in Soho, while others were clearly only for the parade. Either way, I hope everyone enjoyed themselves.
We were then asked to steward the last bit of the parade, by Trafalgar Square. Me and Richard were either side of a likely crossing point, mostly helping people spot gaps to cross in.
Which is where I saw the parade from:
Despite being a bit damp (this is London!), it was good humoured and spectacular. Lots of people smiling, which makes my day.
More pictures (including some of mine) in this flickr group.
So I didn’t get much more involved in pride in the end this year. Work has been hectic, and pride seems to have coped perfectly well without me (No surprise there!). It does look like I’ll be volunteering on the day – possibly signing in other volunteers, as I have in previous years – or maybe doing other things. As they have each year, there seem to be a few good sounding changes to the setup, so it will be interesting to see how they work in practice.
It is not too late to sign up yourself, and whilst they like to know in advance that you’re coming, there is nothing stopping you turning up on the day. Head to the pride parade assembly area, on Baker Street, a few hours before the start. Look for the signs to Steward Control. Now I hope we remember signs for Steward Control…
Something I’ve known was coming for a while, that I can now talk about.
Congratulations to Liam and Brett on their engagement. It sounds like New York has been fun. It was certainly a great evening on Thursday, and I was honoured to be present at the start of something new. I also now understand why there weren’t airline tickets in the envelope that Brett opened – Liam wasn’t done with the surprises at that point :-)
Tonight I went along to one of Soho’s fine bars with Richard for an early meeting about London Pride. I’ve been involved as a volunteer for a couple of years now, and I’m going to have to decide whether to get even more involved soon. In the meantime, a short plug for stewarding on the day. I’ve done it a few times, and it’s great fun. If you think you might be interested, sign up here. If you’re more interested in coming along to watch, keep Saturday, June 30th free.
Every time I visit Stockholm (3 or 4 times a year, I’d guess) I make a point of spending at least one evening at Mandus. It’s a little restaurant in the old town (Gamla Stan), that is mainly marketed at (and apparently run by) gay folk. However, it is certainly ‘heterofriendly’, and seems to get a fair bit of passing trade.
The food is good, reasonably priced (much cheaper than many of the tourist targetted establishments nearby), and they are always very tolerant of my need to speak English!
I’ve idled many pleasant evenings there, and I tend to take colleagues along if we’re travelling as a group. It makes a nice change to be on the road, and in a bar where the eye candy is biased in my direction :-)
If you’re ever in Stockholm, it’s highly recommended. Apologies for the quality of tonight’s picture, but it was dark by the time I left!