Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Waiting and wondering whether you’re falling apart.

I’ve done it; I’ve now been in every province in the country. And I’m proud to say I couldn’t have gone out in a more lude and inappropriate fashion. The same night that saw me peeing on the floor of the Memorial University cafeteria next to our make shift bed of discarded knitted blankets of the rez we broke into because we were too drunk to find our proper building also saw me rent my shirt at a George Street bar and offer free licks to whoever dared. I was a mess, which has become an Atlantic tradition for me.

Sorry for all the LOTR comparisons but Conception Bay looked a lot like it. Towering cliffs adorned with 15th century fortresses split to offer a peak of a distant and hostile Europe beyond its dark waters. Everyone was impossible to understand when they spoke but their glowering stares were quite clear was we chanted our way up Water Street during their Gay Pride Parade. It was worlds apart from Toronto where the whole community comes out to celebrate. Here its was definitely making a statement, windows rolled up as we passed so thy wouldn't catch our AIDS and fishermen scowled while hiding in recessed shop door ways. It made me keenly aware of what it would be like to be judged and unaccepted by your community. It was an important lesson for me especially since for some unknown reason I was right at the front, and it was so small that I could interact with people as I passed by. There was no security of anonymity like you would experience in Toronto. Each person you walked by you spoke directly to them, with nothing between you except misunderstanding.

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