Sunday, March 07, 2010

[The Life of Shaun #397] Sydney Mardi Gras

"They didn't sell out tonight, there'll only be about 25,000 people."

And with that, I entered the world's largest gay party. Three main halls, each one more substantial than most clubs I've shook my tush in, en suite with several smaller venues in a gated gay fantasia. My engaging, nurturing and handsome tourguide, Matt, shuffled me from venue to venue, ensuring we found the best nooks and missed none of the important shows. I saw George Michael and Kelly Rowland, but left before Amanda Lapore and Adam Lambert.

Completely singular event, and as I entered, I thought about how exceptional it was that this largest and most impressive party takes place in a relatively small city on the farthest fringe of the gay travel map. But, after a few more drinks and pondering, I thought that perhaps the enterprising, but pragmatic, denizens of Sydney realised that they had to throw such a singular and exceptional event to inspire tens of thousands of leisure-minded gays, lesbians, their friends and supporters and their disposable income to fly for the better part of a full day to their fair city, bypassing scores of closer, bigger gaycation destinations along the way.

With Sunday afternoon came the follow-up party, Toybox, at Luna Park, Sydney's 1960sesque, fun fair - actually the main event in a lot of people's books. Equally dazzling and certainly unique -- but I left after two hours. Sometimes you just know when you are done, and I was done. I'd had a good party, and I've had a great holiday, I was happy and sated. It was time to go home.

Not looking forward to 28 hours of travel tomorrow, apexing with a three-train ride from Heathrow to East London, but looking forward to getting home and, crucially, staying there for a while.


Pics: Just how far away Sydney is and the city from Luna Park.

Shaun H. Coley
Sydney, NSW

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