With all this media attention in the States about Chick-fil-A and LGBT rights, reminds me of a few summers ago when I was living in Madrid and traveling around Europe. On my way home, I stopped in the UK for a few days to visit a good friend in Brighton. Now Brighton is one of my favorite cities in England. An hour south of London on the water, it has a thriving student population with lots of fun, colorful bars, cafes and adorable shops with lots of laid-back and exciting events and people. It is a beautiful historical city that has been flourishing since Jane Austen‘s time, and it’s and lively and young, something I’ve not always found when traveling in England. Did I mention that Brighton is considered the gay capital of the UK?
I was lucky enough to be in Brighton in 2009 for the Gay Pride festival in August, and let me just tell you, it was unforgettable! I’ve hardly ever seen such general euphoria, lack of inhibition and fun, and seeing it in England was downright shocking! Little kids wearing rainbows mixed with men in speedos and dresses and families snapping pictures and clapping along. My favorite part of the weekend was the Pride parade. The floats and costumes were amazing, and the signs were hilarious! Brighton Pride was so much fun!
Colorful drag queens mingled with teachers, firefighters, priests, and athletes all wearing rainbow flags and singing out their gay pride. One of my favorite moments was watching an old man zoom by on his electric wheelchair sporting a giant sign proclaiming “I’m the oldest gay in the village!” Looking through my old photos, I stumbled on this gem, which I think about sums about my experience at Brighton Pride, rainbows, costumes, tiny speedos and general joy about Brighton and being different and special! I can’t wait to go back one day!
Have you ever been to Brighton Pride or a pride event around the world? What did you think?