Jump Right In!

Lest it be thought that we party only at night, like vampires, a little vid of my friends doing what they do best in the blazing desert sun.

Our hotel had a great space outside to meet and talk with everyone, and a pool in which and by which to frolic.

Las Vegas provided the sun and the space – we took care of the rest!

Jump right in, it’s the Wildside Pool Party!

 

Party Like You Mean It

OMG, THAT was FUN!

We invaded Share Nightclub last night and took over the VIP section. It took a few minutes for us to get settled in and suss out the club, and then all hell broke loose!

Our little VIP area quickly turned into an exuberant party, everyone dancing with everyone else, bopping up and down to the beat, embracing, laughing, loving each other’s company! IMG_7351a1

There were lap dances, girls dropping clothes and shoes, and a healthy dose of raunchiness that never really crossed into the realm of vulgarity.

I danced my feet off for hours, sweating out the tequila I had consumed all week.

I’d dance with one girl, and then a few others would join us; some more arrived and others left in a revolving door of dance partners… every so often, I’d feel a hand caress my back or even a body close behind me and a hand or two coming around the front of my body; it was all good…

I was free and happy and joyful! Doesn’t get much better than that!

Around 3 a.m. we headed back for the hotel in a state of complete exhaustion. We cleaned ourselves up a bit and then went back to the outdoor courtyard to hang out as the girls filtered back from the club and gathered to wind down from the party.

We all spent hours talking and just hanging out until the sun came up.

Then, it was really time for bed…

Party Bus

What do you get when you cram 30 sexy, dancing, drinking, flirting, partying tgirls into a bus filled with liquor and ice and music?

Well, you get Wildside in a Bottle!

This is Wildside mobile, Wildside concentrate! All you’ve come to love about Wildside in a convenient travel pak!

The bait to lure us onto the bus was the promise of picture-taking opportunities; it is well known that none of us can resist having our photos taken…IMG_7259a1a1

We had stops at the “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign, the Cosmopolitan Hotel and downtown on Fremont Street, where they collected refurbished neon signs from vintage Las Vegas into a museum of sorts.

There were a lot of nice backdrops for pictures in the Cosmopolitan, but it was a pretty nice walk to get to them. And, by the time we made it downtown, few of the girls were willing to undertake another long trek in 5-inch heels. Growing pains – this was the first try at it; we will do better next time.

Anyway, photography, night and neon make for a challenging combination and I, for one, got very few memorable photos, despite taking the effort to actually bring along a tripod and a DSLR.

But, it was never really about the pics anyway. Like everything else we do, it was about the love!

It is an incredible phenomenon, but this group plays so unbelievably well together. There is very little hand-holding but if you put yourself into the mix, everyone is your friend, your playmate, your lunch date, your shopping buddy, your dance partner.

We simply cannot get enough of each other. After the bus returned, a large number of us went to the rooftop of the Rio to dance some more.

IMG_7307a1aUnder the stars and above the twinkling lights of Sin City, my friend Gina and I looked around and in every corner where there was light we could see any number of our group dancing, laughing, hugging, flirting. The combinations are ever-changing, having nothing to do with place of origin or who they hung out with last night or last year.

Gina – who is one of the founders of this event – is understandably overcome with pride and emotion at what Wildside has become. But, here’s the thing: so am I. I think all the girls know how special this group has become and are proud to be part of it.

Wildside Tuesday

The goings on in Las Vegas…

Vegas, Baby!

I’ve told you all  in years past (see here, here, or here for example) about our annual Las Vegas shindig… well, it’s on again, starting today!

I am already in Sin City, but things haven’t gotten underway just yet. Still, no shortage of things to do…

I spent the better part of the day at a ghost town not too far from here that is basically a million great photo ops! Just the perfect place for me!

We took literally hundreds of photos, and if 50 of them are not among the 100 best I’ve ever taken, I’ll eat my hat!

No, check that – I have eaten way too much already – and I have only been here for a couple of days!

IMG_7011a1

My friends are arriving starting today, and the party is about to blast off. For all you kittens that want to follow along in our debauchery and merry-making, check out Twitter under the hashtag #VWS12.

As a Canadian, it is a royal pain for me to use twitter in the U.S. since I either have to find a wifi connection or roll up the truck to Fort Knox to pay for using their cellular network. But for my loyal followers, no effort is too large, right?

Bacon-Stuffed Janie

Well, there goes my diet!

IMG_6868a1I have been in Las Vegas for not even 24 hours, and I have probably consumed more calories than I normally do in a week.IMG_6886a

Instead of a small bowl of granola and yogurt for breakfast today, I started with a Bloody Maria and finished with a giant portion of Sage-fried Chicken and Bacon-Stuffed Waffles with maple syrup.IMG_6874a

But I will say that GF’s “Hand-Hammered Pork Tenderloin Benedict” took the prize for gluttony. The photo doesn’t do it justice; it is 12 inches across if it is an inch!

(As always, click on each photo to enlarge it.)

I So Love Philly

IMGP1190aEvery time we go to Philadelphia, we have a total blast. Mostly shopping and eating and enjoying the historic streets of the city – and oh, yes, the great cocktail bars.IMGP1174a

I am not sure why Philadelphia seems to offer the best selection of peculiarly-themed cocktail bars that take drink-making very seriously and merry-making equally so.IMGP1153a

But, that’s been my experience.

Of course, there is no mystery when it comes to the Philly cheesesteak. Simple food made exceptionally well from fresh ingredients – there is no such thing as Philly cheesesteak anywhere but in Philadelphia.

I just LOVE IT!!

An Utterly Sublime Threesome

Their hands caressed every inch of my body, every nook and cranny – well almost. When they were done with me, I was little more than a hunk of quivering Jell-O; it was as if my bones had turned soft.

This was the best threesome I’ve ever had – and I hope to do it again sometime.IMG_6340a1

For those of you who have never had a “four-handed massage,” I assure you that the experience is exponentially greater than the sum of two plus two.

We are, indeed, talking here of massage, and not euphemistically about anything else. Tsk! Get your minds out of the gutter…

The thing about having two therapists working on you simultaneously is that your whole body is receiving attention at the same time, and you drift into an incredible state of relaxation.

Expensive? Yes. But memorable.

Put it on your bucket list; you won’t regret it.

Winter Fire

Last week I attended Winter Fire, a fetish event put on by Dark Odyssey.

Unlike most of these events, which are a "Look at Me!" kind of thing, Winter Fire is much more about people and their fetishes. One main reason for this is probably the prohibition against any camera use at the event.

The organizers provide creative activities, mixers, etc. at the beginning of the event in order to facilitate meeting new people. The people themselves are quite friendly and open to newcomers, which is quite different from what I have experienced at Fetish Weekend in Montréal, and what I have been told about other major fetish events.

But, what is most remarkable about Winter Fire is the sheer variety of fetish and gender expression that is on display. You can wander through the several dungeons and playrooms available and find flogging, bondage play, domination, submission, fire play, needle play, sex machines, cages, wrestling… the list goes on.

And, the players come in all shapes and sizes, not just in terms of height and weight, but in terms of gender.

In fact, remarkably, in the Sex-o-Rama room – a place where there were comfortable pieces of furniture on which people could have sex – I walked by a round red bed upon which there were five naked people making love – and I could not discern the gender of any one of them!

[And, I must confess, it was a pretty hot scene! Frankly, not something I thought that would appeal to me, but, live and learn!]

There are also courses given on subjects of interest to this group, ranging from practical how-to demonstrations [often hands-on] to spiritual aspects of sexuality to latex clothes-making. Depending on the subject, I didn’t know whether to find some of the demonstrations in the hands-on courses to be uniquely and instructively open or just incredibly vulgar.

I also got a bit of a chuckle out of the attempts of one lecturer to avoid any offense to anyone in this crowd when describing, say, male genitals.

Using any gender-related term required disclaimers for those born as that gender, those born as that gender but not identifying as that gender, those born as the opposite gender but identifying as that gender those born as one gender but not identifying as any gender, those born as one gender but identifying certain physical body parts as not related to that gender or to any gender, etc., etc., etc. You get the picture.

All in all, it was an eye-opening experience for me, but, as is my way, I found it raising more questions about me and my gender, and about unlimited open-mindedness in general.

I guess that’s a good thing… I’ll share any insights in the coming weeks.

Kid in a Candy Store

Black Friday found me on the premises of Charlotte Russe, an American clothier with no peer in Canada.  Their fashions are appealing, and their prices are hard to believe.

I was all over that!IMG_8743a1

I picked up a number of tops at under $4 each, and a collection of sexy mini-skirts at around $6 apiece.  Shoes under $30…  Dresses in the $20 range…

I must confess to having become helplessly overwhelmed by the number of choices I had and the bargains to be found…

I felt like a cat surrounded by lethargic, careless mice and low, slow-flying birds – too many to catch and which one first?

I had to get out of there and gain some perspective…

But, really, such deals are hard to pass up, and all the more when I get to this store but once a year…

Pretty please, Santa, can’t I have everything?

Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing

Travelling sometimes means that it is harder to be in the right clothes at the right time, and the other day was one such time.IMG_8556a

Being at the door of a store full of yummy girly clothes, I just had to go in, even though I was totally in guy mode.

No matter… it seems my shame – at least in this respect – has vanished.  I was picking up items here and there and posing with them in front of public mirrors, and then went so far as to get myself a dressing room and try some stuff on.

Tried on shoes too.

The sales staff never batted an eye…

Cheesecake Photo of Me

Did I say “cheesecake?”  Oopsy!  I meant “cheesesteak!” Winking smile

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Ful-Phillied

Wow!  What a blast we had in Philly!

It is no New York, to be sure, but its small size and high quality IMG_0530aentertainment factor count for a lot. 

We started by dropping in on our old haunt, Jim’s Steaks, for the best damn Philly Cheesesteak there is; don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.  We’ve been going hours out of our way for a decade to come to this place, so believe us when we tell you a) there is no such thing as Philly Cheesesteak outside of Philadelphia, and b) Jim’s is the best there is.IMG_0553a

Stomach filled, we went shopping.  Sexy dresses, fun jewellery and a huge selection of low-priced shoes beckoned us, and we simply couldn’t resist.

Then came the bar-hopping.  My oh my!

We started right at the top of the heap, at a place called The Farmers’ Cabinet.  I am a cosmopolitan girl, IMG_0557ahaving traveled some and experienced many bars and drunk many drinks…  But this place shot out the lights!  The ambiance was like a forties or thirties vibe with a farmhouse accent, and the drinks were pure alchemy.  Easily the best bar I have been in in at least a decade!

We met a nice fellow there, a cute, outgoing gay guy who was conducting a bar-jumping experiment of his own.  When he mentioned a connection to my home town, I invited him to look us up any time he was there.  He left shortly thereafter; I feared I may have scared him off.  Oopsy!

We proceeded to Good Dog Cafe/Bar, to sample the cheesesteak empanadas, featured on The Food Network’s Diner’s Drive-In’s and Dives.  Not bad, and a welcome fat-antidote to our alcoholic intake.  But, before long weIMG_0545a were off to our next bar: the Franklin Mortgage & Investment Company – a fine place to get a nice return on your investment.  Sophisticated drinks, a speakeasy vibe and yummy munchies were on offer. Plus, we ran into our old friend from The Farmers’ Cabinet – I guess I hadn’t scared him off after all.  We sat for a spell and had a drink and nice conversation.

But dinner was still needed.  That turned out to be Duck Fat Fries with Sly Fox Cheddar Sauce and Beef Shortribs, served with a IMG_0563adrink called the Harvard Girl – the nutritional goodness of all four foodgroups: protein, fat, carbs and alcohol.   This divine combination was to be found at Village Whiskey, and served up with a smile by our friendly bartender, Jon, backed up by an excellent jazz soundtrack.  (And FYI, this was the best-stocked bar we came across the whole night.)

After that, there was nothing left to do but go home and sleep… for a week.

Red Cap Redhead

Picked up a morning coffee at Stumptown Roasters (yet another terrific NYC cafe!) before heading to Penn Station to catch a train to Philadelphia cheesesteaks!IMG_0520a

Oh, yes.  I do follow my stomach Winking smile (unless there are more tantalizing temptations to distract me.)

So, there we are, having boarded the train with our two large valises, when GF gives me “the look.”  Yes, dear, I know…

Suddenly, it is this girl’s duty to heave those suitcases onto the overhead rack – and from the stares that came my way, I was either being perceived as an incredibly able-bodied woman or, well, you know…

Perfect Harmony

I have had more than my share of disappointments trying Thai restaurants in America.  Given that I am a lover of Thai, and that we have been spoiled with great Thai restaurants where I live, more’s the pity.

But all that changed last night in Manhattan, when I found Galanga on 4th Street W. near 6th Avenue.  (Galanga, by the way, is Thai ginger.)IMG_0519a

Finally, Thai food that hasn’t been Americanized!  Finally, a place that doesn’t lump all Asian food onto one menu, as if Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese and Malaysian were all more or less the same.

We started with a Papaya Salad, shredded papaya, red peppers, carrots and onions with a sweet, spicy, garlicky dressing that was perfectly balanced and refreshing.

That was followed by a Shrimp Fat Fried Rice dish that was a shining example of how to do fried rice – a gourmet treat if done right, but crappy fattening fast food if done wrong.  Studded with shrimp and full of flavor, all cooked up at high heat to give the rice just the right texture, it was heavenly.

While we’re up there in the clouds, the Panang Chicken Curry was also divine.  It again adhered to the sacred mantra of balancing Hot, Salty, Sour and Sweet that is a hallmark of great Thai food. 

As an aside, we had brunch at Bobby Flay’s Bar Americain for lunch.  I have been a fan of his cooking for some time, but dinner at Galanga was better and the bill came to less than one-third of the ticket for brunch.

Galanga has earned a roster spot for my next visit to Manhattan.  Totally yum!!

Ok, I Love New York

This past weekend was probably the tenth time I’ve visited the Big Apple.  I have never been a big fan of New York; it was always too intense and aggressive for me.  By contrast, I fell in love with Chicago the very first time I set foot in the place.  But, I am about to relent… the place is starting to grow on me.

There is no denying that New York is a massive ball of energy, of people driven towards their own ends – each a contribution to the Manhattan mosaic of infinite variety of seek and find that goes on here.  There is so much that it is impossible to take it all in as a tourist.  It’s overwhelming.

There is a feeling that you are missing something all the time, that no matter where you are, something significant is going on somewhere else.  The selection of things to visit, see, and do is so enormous that a cursory sampling of these would take at least a couple of weeks, instead of the two days I usually have.IMG_0428a

I am adapting.  I am learning to be content to take in whatever I see and forget about what might have been; that helps.  Part of this calm comes from my promise to self to come back here with more time, and keep doing it until I do get it all.

New York is an amazing feast wherever you go and whatever you see. 

Washington Square at dusk, with quiet jazz wafting in the air was magical.  Bryant Park in the morning, with skaters on the ice and bustling shops all nestled in the midst of Manhattan apartment buildings and stores, was bright and energizing.  Greenwich Village shops were quaint and interesting, cafe’s eclectic and soothing, and oh so hip.

The size, bustle and action of New York allows the smallest and most diverse kinds of shops and bars to flourish; nowhere else could they survive…  a bar in the back of a barber shop, a peanut butter sandwich shop to name two off the top of my head.IMG_0422a

I like intense places, to a point.  Specifically, and metaphorically, things move more efficiently where the slightest gap in traffic invites pedestrians to cross against the light without the slightest interference from the authorities. 

The knock on NY for me has always been that I can actually feel my blood pressure going up when I am here.  There are line-ups everywhere – which I hate – and sometimes the pace just gets to be too much. 

But, I am starting to get it.  There is just so much to see and do that people have to race everywhere all the time.  And, once you get accustomed to the pace here, everywhere else is just, well, kinda, slow.

Lobster Dinner

Where I come from, having lobster is a pretty special affair, and is therefore to be eaten in finery – tuxedos, gowns, cocktails dresses and  such.  More to the point, one wants to be dressed in clothing that costs more than the weighty number at the bottom of the bill that arrives once we’re done wiping the melted butter away from our lips.IMG_4489a

But, where lobster comes from, both the food bill and the luxury factor are much diminished.  And, as is often the case with food, the less it costs, the better it is.  If you doubt my word, ask yourself whether or not an in-season tomato, locally grown, is not cheaper and infinitely more wonderful than the pricey winter tomatoes flown in from southerly climes.

So here, without guilt, on an ordinary Monday night, we found ourselves at the Lobster Pot, staring at a bright orange-shelled dinner (and it staring back at us – never get used to that).

Fresh, succulent and simple; just the way the best foods are.  And, a price that goes down just as easy, allowing a return visit later this week.

Just another fringe benefit of coming to the T-Party that is Fantasia.

Fantasia

Hi everyone!  Today, I find myself in lovely Provincetown, Massachusetts, quaint – cute as a button – seaside village, on a sunny, gorgeous day. 

PTown is the site of Fantasia Fair, the longest running of the many tgirl conferences in the U.S.  It was here that I came, back in my very early days as a tgirl, to find my feet as it were, and it was a judicious decision if there ever was one.Picture0423

There is no place I have ever been where it is easier to be a crossdresser or tgirl of any stripe.  We pretty much have the run of the town – and we are EVERYWHERE!

It is said that the hardest place in the world to “pass” is PTown during Fantasia – as everyone in town is presumed to be T; that is the extent to which we are ubiquitous.  We are totally accepted, and any girl, from the rank beginner on up, can feel comfortable walking the streets.  You are so likely to be taken as trans that it is neither a reflection on your “passability” nor a concern at all.  (Many GGs are mistaken for tgirls too.)

It is the perfect place to come and feel what it might be like if your home town were ever to embrace you unreservedly.  You can walk around freely, go to the market or the store, or out for dinner – all the things you’ve dreamed of if you’ve wanted to go out but never found the nerve.

It is a true and palpable fantasy – so much so that the organizers of this event have seen it necessary to remind new girls that the ecstasy of acceptance they feel here will not likely be found when they get home.  They call it the Pink Fog (though, I believe, Purple is the more appropriate color).

If you are feeling stuck inside at home, constrained by the four walls of your existence, be sure to punch your ticket for next year’s Fantasia Fair.  Or, hop in your car or on the plane right now and come down for the rest of the week!  The organizers here know and understand every worry, fear, hesitation or hangup you may have and will find a way to accommodate you.

So, jump in – the water’s fine!!

Plane Truth

So, I did it.  I did just what I said I was going to do, and didn’t have the slightest problem.  I wore my girl clothes under some male clothes and changed on the plane. (See All Aboard – Except the TGirl)IMG_3435a Plane Jane

I am not playing games here.  Though it may seem trivial to Transport Canada, I am not doing this for a lark.

Of necessity, I lead a double life; my girl and guy lives are entirely separate.  I was meeting a friend on the other end who knows only Janie, and Janie is who I must be when I get off the plane.

Looking back on the boarding process, I suspect that I could probably have worn a dress and a bow in my hair to the boarding gate and gotten away with it.

The agents there have so many passengers to go through, and if they are even managing to compare the name on the ID to the boarding pass, I would be surprised.

Making an assessment of gender is not likely within their frame of consciousness.

Still, I am not going to risk all the trouble it might bring to challenge the rules. 

The rule is wrong, no doubt.  But I suspect one doesn’t realize how precious unfettered access to air transportation is until one gets one’s name on a “list.”

And, I don’t want to find out.

All Aboard–Except the TGirl

Having flown without incident as a girl on a number of occasions in the U.S., I was quite taken aback to read that in Canada – a country most people would regard as more progressive – the law requires airlines to deny boarding to anyone who “does not appear to be of the gender indicated on the identification he or she presents.” (Aeronautics Act of Canada Section 5.2(1)(b).)

My experiences in America have been nothing but pleasant. I have sung the praises, on these very pages, of both border agents and security personnel, who have gone out of their way to be accommodating and pleasant.IMG_3448aAir Traveling Again

It never occurred to me that my own country, which has legalized same-sex marriage, gives much greater recognition to common-law spouses, and often even pays for sex-change surgery, would have enacted such a dubious rule in the name of passenger safety.

Either I look like the person in my photo – and can prove my gender if necessary to confirm – or I don’t.

Whether I wear a dress or nail polish or heels should have no bearing on it.

I had intended on wearing a skirt and heels with a slinky tank top on my upcoming flight.

And, I am still going to… except for the heels. 

However, to comply with the regulation, I will now gather the skirt into a baggy pair of chinos, wear a loose-fitting polo shirt over my tank-top, and don a pair of running shoes.

By the time my bottom has touched down on my assigned seat in the cabin, the chinos and polo shirt will be in the overhead bin, along with my running shoes, and I will have extracted my heels and makeup kit from my carry-on.

It may cause a few wide-eyed stares from my fellow passengers, but I’m flying as a girl even if I can’t board that way.

I fail to see how security is enhanced by making me jump through these hoops to fly in my chosen gender. 

Perhaps it is directed at the man who, not convincingly and for nefarious purposes, dresses up as a woman and presents female ID.  But fake ID is fake ID, whether gender is at issue or not. 

I don’t know – maybe it makes it easier for the people at the gate to process passengers more quickly. 

I don’t know…  The U.S. seems to manage alright without singling out trans people.  So should Canada.

Mad Mad World

Has common sense gone out the window?  Have people no sense of decorum, or consideration for others?

I could do no better than to shake my head in disappointment and shame after reading a story published by SF Weekly late last month.  It concerned the denial of boarding privileges to a black football player who was wearing sagging baggy pants that exposed his underwear, while, in a separate incident, allowing a white man in his 60s to board wearing only a bra and panties. (Click here for the original story.)

This whole episode offends me on so many levels.  First, there is the young man, who, rather than being embarrassed, obviously refused a request to pull his pants up, as if it was his constitutional right to gross out the other passengers who were sitting in close quarters with him.  I hope he at least had enough self-respect to wear clean underwear.

Then, there’s the crossdresser, whose conduct evidences a complete lack of respect for himself, for others, and for the trans community. (Do click on his photo below to see this pillar of society in all his glory.  He looks so proud of himself.  I’d like to slap that self-satisfied grin right off his face.)  Was it a lark?  a dare?  What planet did he fall off of?  Has he seen people walking the street that way?  I can’t say it plainer than this: you don’t walk around in your underwear in polite society, whether you are a crossdresser or not.  ap_passenger_scantily_dressed_jp_110622_wg

For all of us who want to be taken seriously, as real people living real lives and wanting the same rights as everyone else, this guy is a selfish fool who has hurt us all.  The public sees another headline-grabbing memorable image of what a CD is.  Parents will cringe at the idea that he might have sat beside their child. 

They also see that the airline let him fly when no genetic woman would have been allowed to board that way.  That will reinforce the idea that special-interests get special treatment, and that we are being given too much as it is. 

I don’t know why they let him on board, but I am worried that I will have a lot more trouble the next time I fly.  Because of him.

No doubt, the lawyers are getting involved… I wouldn’t be surprised if, in either or both cases, these folks were just hoping to be confronted so that they would have a right to sue under some civil rights law.  It is a no-win situation for businesses and reasonable people.

Finally, I note the poor choice of headline from SF Weekly:  “Crossdressing Man Allowed on US Airways Flight.”  When I first read it, I thought, “Why is this a headline; are CDs not supposed to be allowed to fly or something?”  Perhaps people from other walks of life may take note in a different way, asking, “OMG, they’re now letting CDs fly! Ew!”

All we need is a little common sense here, people.  Sadly, it seems to be in terribly short supply.

Janie Craves…

On our drive to San Diego last month, we stopped off to visit a friend at his home.

We know him as a nice, funny and handsome guy who has a passion for life and plenty of laughter.  He occasionally dresses up, but with his booming deep bass voice and broad 6’4” frame, he has a hard time passing as a girl.IMG_1982a

He was a consummate host, taking us for a lovely walk along the beach, showing us around his home, and going out for dinner with us to a terrific restaurant.

We topped the evening off with one of my favorite things in the whole world – a campfire on the beach – and marshmallows for roasting too! 

Goodness, me!  How romantic and awe-inspiring… fire and ocean… the crackling flame and the surf’s roar…  taking off my shoes and feeling the soft sand on my feet… so sensuous…  Add a sweetheart of a guy and exactly how does life get any better?

Ah… but all good things must come to an end, and we had to get going to San Diego.

I don’t think I am being presumptuous to infer that he probably would have preferred if we had spent the night.  IMG_1980a1

However, I am allergic to most everything in his home, and so it was simply not even a consideration.  I spent a decade of my life not being able to breathe, and I’m not going back there again!

But, as we drove away, I felt a sense of disappointment that we had to leave him.  I’d like to know him better and figure him out more.  Also, I worry that he sometimes doesn’t take as good care of himself as I wish he would.  (Oops, am I starting to sound like a doting girlfriend?)

I had a wonderful time.  Love ya, babe!

The Advantages of Being T

Today was travel day, and I decided to wear a flirty, flouncy sundress and high-heeled sandals.  I wanted to feel as feminine as possible before I return to the drudgery of life tomorrow.

Kudos once again to the security people for not even flinching as they perused my passport.

And, thanks to the security officer who smiled at me and complimented my dress.IMGP1144a

Flying home on Southwest, we boarded early and took up the aisle and window seats of Row 6 leaving the center seat empty and hoping no one would take it.

Ok, who’s gonna sit beside the tranny?  I started hoping I was having a bad day so that everyone would notice what I was and walk on by…

The parade of passengers boarding after us seemed endless, and the stewardess announced that every seat on the plane was taken, so start filling up those middle seats.

Well, if every available seat was taken, they don’t count empty seats next to trannies as available.  Cuz, here we are at 30,000 feet and no one is sitting next to me.

And, that’s just fine with me.

A Good Night

Staying at the Hard Rock Hotel, we just had to check out the incredible vibe and energy coming from the club in the lobby.

Unfortunately, it was 1 a.m. and they weren’t letting anyone else in.

As we stood there, forlorn and forsaken outside the velvet rope, Prince Charmin’ rode to the rescue.IMG_2048a1

He came up to me and stood in real close, looked me in the eyes and said, “I am so taking you upstairs with me tonight.”

“Um, no you’re not,” I replied, just loving this…

“Why not?”

“Cuz I don’t know you.”

He looked over at GF, who was smiling.  “Your friend says yes,” he pronounced.

“You misunderstand her,”  I said.  “Honey, you have no idea what you’re getting yourself into.”

“C’mon then…”

“I don’t think so, but thanks so much for the offer, really.”  I skipped off on a cloud, smiling all the way.

Sunbathing

As anyone who has been following me knows, I am white – maybe ghostly so.  I have always been relatively pale, but having to stay out of the sun in order to do my laser hair removal treatments has turned me almost porcelain.

Funny thing is that I am now liking that look.

However, I have missed being able to go outside and not have to hide from the sun, so I slathered on some sunscreen and went out by the pool.

There is something very comforting and warming about the feeling of the sun’s rays on naked skin.IMG_1307a

Here’s the evidence:

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Elvis by Cirque

We love Elvis, and we love Cirque de Soleil.  So, an Elvis show by Cirque… gotta go, right?IMG_1391a

So, here’s my review.  The show, a meeting of two great franchises – Elvis and Cirque – is not so much Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup as it is, “You got your chocolate on my pickle.”IMG_1412a

Nothing was gained by marrying the two.  One distracted from the other.  Great acrobatics, but do I watch them or the terrific film montage of Elvis?  Great singer, but Elvis did it better.

A shame really.  The best part of the show was right at the end, when they showed Vegas Elvis on film handing out his scarves to crazy fans at the foot of the stage as red satin scarves rained down from the ceiling on the real-life audience, giving us all souvenirs to take home.

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On the Air from Wildside Central

What do you do when you have 50 sexy, exhibitionist and sociable t-girls gathered in a room in latex and other fetishwear, and in the mood for a party?IMG_2286 (1)a

Why, you broadcast the whole thing on the internet, that’s what!

Seems people were actually interested too, if viewership is any indication!

We do love showing off when we get together in La Vegas.  We show off to each other, then to the City of Las Vegas, and when that’s not enough… the world-wide web!

We do have great fun!

And, it is so gratifying to walk around town and have people constantly stopping us and asking to have their picture taken with us.IMG_2266 (1)a

I know it turns us into a bit of a sideshow, but heck, this is Vegas, for goodness sake!

We all go there to let loose and have a blast.  We can be conservative and just regular folk when we go home.

A nice, large dose of ego-stroking and affirmation is good for the soul, believe me!

Vegas Vixens

This is what passes for a low-key meet-and-greet dinner at a Chinese restaurant, Wildside-style.  Ya think anyone noticed us?

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BTW, much to my surprise, I got more compliments on this outfit than any other I wore the whole week.

The Hardest Part is Saying Goodbye

Minutes after leaving my Wildside friends, I felt strangely alone. IMGP0969a

I realized you can’t get very far before you come to understand that the energy and love of the group lifts us all and makes us better, and that the thing I will miss the most – already do! – is being connected to everyone. IMG_1156a

Sure, the internet helps, but it is not the same as being there with each other. Waking up every day in the midst of friends is so comforting and supportive, and it is sad to realize that it will be so long before I can do that again.

It sure was fun!  But in the end, this trip is about the love.

Fetish, Wildside Style

Lather, rinse, repeat…

There I was relaxing by the pool, when a couple of friends joined me…

…one conquered bottle of tequila later, it was time to get ready for the Fetish Party.IMG_1033a1

There are some real fetish girls in the group, but the Wildside Fetish Party is nothing so hardcore.  It is just the same bunch of wonderful gals as the previous night, dressed in latex, leather, corsets and such, coming together for another fabulous get-together of sharing stories and feelings, flirting, touching, camming, dancing, joking…IMG_0943a

It was a really nice party, following which a few of us spent the wee hours of the morning traipsing around the Canal Shops at the Venetian Hotel and Casino, taking some special photos.

We were quite the attraction – my friends more so than me, believe me – and stranger after stranger came up to us asking if they could have their picture taken with us, which we happily obliged.IMG_1066a

By 5 a.m. we had snapped a hundred photos and were feeling pretty good about ourselves and all the attention we were getting.

But we were about to be brought down a peg.

Being a bit hungry, we stopped off for a burger and shake.  Walking back to the hotel from there, we passed a drunken fool who gets credit for the comment of the night – a comment that we found as funny as it was assinine:

“Oh geez! From a distance, I thought you all were hot.  I hope you take that as a compliment.”

How could we not?

Wild Wildside!

Hooboy!  That first party was a doozy!IMG_0732a

Picture 50 sexy, wild, exhibitionist t-girls who just love each other’s company, in skimpy lingerie, in a hotel suite with booze flowing and two live webcams broadcasting, and twenty cameras taking pictures.IMG_0895a

That is Lingerie Night, Wildside style!

It is hard to describe the phenomenon that is Wildside.  There is so much love, so much laughter, so much fun and sexiness!  The friendships in this group are like the ones you made back in high school; most of us don’t see each other all year long, but when we finally get back together, we pick up just as if we never left each other.IMG_0788a

There are a bunch of new girls this year, or at least they were new, yesterday.  Now, they are as much a part of the group as everyone else.

I went to bed at 4 a.m., leaving a bunch of girls still partying.  I rolled out of bed late this morning, did a bit of shopping and then parked my sexy ass at the pool, in the soft breeze, to recharge before tonight’s second big-time party.

See ya, tequila!

Being Different Comes in Many Flavors

According to a local paper, many of the attendees at the Rockabilly Festival enjoy the freedom the group gives them to express their individuality in musical and fashion terms.  They do not follow what is considered mainstream or popular and go their own way.IMG_0559a

People at these events wear vintage fashions, or modern spins on those, along with two-tone shoes or colorful brogues.  The men slick their hair back while the women have their hair intricately styled into 40s dos, often in jet black, platinum blond or bright red.  Many are heavily tattooed.IMG_0627a

The newspaper quoted one person saying how she loved coming to this event because, at least for one weekend a year, she can dress as she likes and not feel like an outcast.

Sound familiar?

Him Again!

Sometimes, feelings hit you by surprise.

Case in point, I am here in Las Vegas, having spent the past four days in boy mode with GF at a Rockabilly convention.  What a fabulous event it was, demonstrating that the 60-year old spirit of 1950s rock and roll, rhythm and blues and country hillbilly music is alive and well and that the next generation will keep the faith in impressive numbers and with ample exuberance.

Everyone was dolled up impressively in vintage fashions, with a certain modern edge for the younger set, the old and beautiful cars were on display, and The Killer himself – Jerry Lee Lewis – rocked the stage in impressive form.

In this environment, GF has (correctly) ordained that it is appropriate that we go as boy and girl – and I play the part of boy, cuz she’s no good at it.  Her soft voice, ample bust and very curvy hips make it pretty much impossible for her, but that’s a subject for another time.

So, here I am now, after a few days of floating on the very best kind of energy I know, and very much looking forward to the massive influx of my tranny friends tomorrow morning and beyond, and I feel…

…well…IMG_0692a

…like a guy. 

I bought a bunch of very cool guy clothes today – I don’t often buy guy clothes any more but vintage stuff is just so cool and fits me much better than anything made in the past 20 years – and I haven’t really thought or felt girl for some time!  For the most part, I have been lamenting my inability to better look the part of a 50s hipster because of my long hair.

As I was putting away my boy clothes this evening, GF looked at me with a bit of sadness on her face – sad to say goodbye to her guy, with whom she got to spend a solid four days for the first time in ages – and, to my surprise, I kinda felt the same way.

It is time to shift gears, even if the clutch is stuck.  I’ll have time to think about what this all means when I get home, but starting tomorrow is a week I don’t want to miss.  My spirit will catch up in no time flat, I expect.

Topless

A few of the girls coming to our Las Vegas fete are hell-bent on invading a topless swimming pool at one of the other hotels.

One is tempted to the reaction that this was much ado about nothing… to state it bluntly: take the top off a bikini-wearing crossdresser, and you have a man in a speedo!

Ok, ok, that’s not exactly right, I know.  With wigs and makeup, it would certainly have a different flavor, and those of the girls who are on hormones or who have implants would obviously have a completely different experience.

But, it struck me how, in a way, it is all coming full circle… to go through all these changes only to end up doing something we could have done any time without a second thought as guys, and making a big deal about it.IMG_3082a

Upon reflection, though, that’s really the whole point, isn’t it?

I mean, so much of a person’s sexuality is between their ears.  Here is a perfect example of an activity that has completely changed simply due to how we think of ourselves and our bodies.  The act is the same, but it sure doesn’t feel that way!

And, it doesn’t matter whether you’re in transition or not.  All that matters is that you feel yourself to be a woman.

As someone not on hormones and without implants (topless, profoundly Winking smile), I can tell you that even I have come to feel much differently about my breasts (which are unchanged since before I first became Janie).  I do not casually expose them, I do not walk around without a shirt, and I instinctively cover them up.

So, as it happens, going to a topless pool would indeed be a titillating (sorry, but you knew I had to go there Open-mouthed smile) experience for me.

Goll, darn!

Here’s to Airport Screeners

Traveling to Las Vegas, I opted out of the scary big machine scanner thingy, and took the pat-down instead.

The guy quickly radioed, “Female assist needed,” and within a few seconds, a female screener appeared.

The airport security authority has clearly bent over backwards to accommodate the most sexually sensitive people out there, from providing a same-sex screener for the pat-down, to instituting procedures requiring them to describe exactly how they are going to touch each part of your body.IMGP0871a

As I stood there, with an undoubtedly bemused look on my face as she explained that she was going to use the back of her hand to pat down my ass and my breast area, and the front of her hand on the inside of my leg or arm, or whatever, I found it all just too much.

I am very glad for all the efforts that have been made to ensure that travelers are not discriminated against in any way, but the level of “sensitivity” shown struck me as having descended to the ridiculous.

My personal perspective aside, what about the screeners themselves?

We often concern ourselves with people accommodating themselves to our needs, but think of the woman who had to do my pat-down.

As up close and personal as we were, I am clearly not female…  I mean, she ran her hand right up the inside of my thigh until she hit something.  If she were permitted to be as sensitive about touching/being touched by the opposite sex as we allow passengers to be – and why shouldn’t she be? – then we’d be at a stalemate.  This is an instance (among many others) when indulging everyone to the max is just not possible – and not the first where it is a trans person who throws the biggest wrench in the works.

I am thankful for her indulgence and her consideration of my feelings, but I feel bad at having had mine placed as a priority above hers, even if it was done entirely without my approval or need. 

A pat-down should not be a sexual experience, and as long the screening is conducted in a professional manner, as it was by all the screeners I observed, it shouldn’t matter the gender of the screener or the passenger.

Just my thoughts.

Hey Baby, Let’s Go to Vegas!

The annual Sin City Soirée is coming up in just a few days… so exciting!

For those of you who haven’t been with me for that long, I have been going to an annual t-girl week in Las Vegas for a few years now, and find it to be a celebration of all that’s great about being T!IMG_4230a

Every year, a totally accepting, fun, enthusiastic, happy group of girls gathers in Las Vegas to make friends, lounge by the pool, go out dancing at night, and just have a sublimely exhausting week of merriment.DSCN0431a

We go everywhere and anywhere, and don’t mind turning a few heads while we’re at it.

We welcome new girls every year, and accept them as family from Day One.  I am no social butterfly, but I can tell you that I have never felt so at ease, so welcomed and instantly accepted and loved by strangers as I did the day I met these girls.4559988320_483eb57db6_ba

The girls run the gamut from passable to not, from crossdresser to transitioning, from those who spend the whole week as girls to those who hang out with us in boy mode from time to time, and from the four corners of the globe, and there is no attitude, no ego, no judging and no expectations.IMG_6295a

So many girls have simply bloomed like a flower as a result of exposure to this group’s energy.

We all show up, participate as much or as little as we want – and have a blast!  We talk, we make real friends… and we stay in touch all year long… until we get to do it again!

Nice Idea, But Will It Fly?

A new Thai regional airline is recruiting transgender people for its cabin staff positions.

Nice as it is, this news would be more significant if it were being done by a successful and experienced airline.IMG_3548a

The reality is that this is a new startup, founded by fortune-teller Piyo Chantraporn, 47, who said he had a "sixth-sense" insight which spurred him to launch the airline. He and realty businessman Chatrawiwat Klumkomol raised 200 million baht to set up the venture.

They have already hired some staff, including Miss Tiffany Universe 2007, who is best known as a model and soap opera actress and goes by the name "Nong Film".

The government agency responsible for airline safety has no objection to transgender cabin crew – which is not insignificant news. 

The airline will provide charter service out of Bangkok, and I wish them all the “good fortune” in the world.

For more details, see http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/218188/new-thai-airline-dares-to-be-different

Girl is as Girl Does

Chicagoans see me as a girl, it seems.

I have yet to break out my girl clothes or makeup, I haven’t taken a razor to my faceIMG_8403b1 in almost a week, and yet I have been treated almost exclusively as female, whether in a restaurant, or trying on clothes in a department store, or on the street.

…and that suits me just fine!

Though I had no problem looking through the clothes in the women’s section of a certain department store, I really didn’t have the nerve to ask to be let into the women’s change rooms in my then state of appearance.  But the sales clerk who came by offering assistance referred to me as ma’am, so I thought I’d give it a shot. 

Obviously, people take a large part of their cue from the length of one’s hair, and the fact that my face is pretty much clear of any hair.

…that and the fact that I am trying on jewellery or skirts…

Seems that girl is as girl does.

As hard as it is to believe, it looks like if you behave as a girl, most people will assume you are one.

Thing is, I haven’t been trying to act female at all, and still, even in neutral contexts like restaurants I am still assumed to be female.

It has happened in front of my sister, which causes nothing more than a bit of teasing. It has happened in front of my GF, which is no problem. Not sure how comfy it’ll be when it happens in front of Mom or Dad or my buddies.IMG_8406a1

I’ll fall off that bridge when I get to it.

Meanwhile, I look at these episodes as an opportunity to make clear in front of those I might one day come out to that I am fine with being perceived as female. I am admitting nothing, but putting the concept into their consciousness nevertheless.

That said, today “stealth Janie” can take a break; the real thing is coming out to play.

Corset, Collar, Fishnets and Patent Platform Heels

Photo Gallery (6 photos):  Four staples of the fetish wardrobe come together in my little outfit… (click on the photos for much larger versions)

2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 032a2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 029a

I bought the corset last year from a vendor at Southern Comfort (www.timeless-trends.com), the red bra is Victoria Secret (www.victoriasecret.com) and the collar from an independent designer.  (The red bra matches the corset so well that I thought about wearing it out, instead of covering it with the the top of the dress… maybe next time ;) )

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The furry black strapless mini-dress and matching hat are vintage, and just as well-suited to a fancy cocktail party (as long as no bra-straps are left showing ;) and, I dare say, with different shoes…

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The happy face below is brought to you by Fetish Weekend in Montreal.  Next year is already in the works.

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Big Easy

After a handful of days in Montreal, it suddenly dawned on me that I don’t have to go all the way to San Diego for a place to be free and easy and Janie. Middle of the Road

The realization came to me as I was walking down the street looking for a cafe for our Labor Day morning coffee and breakfast.  I’m out and about, wearing scarcely any makeup, in jeans and a t-shirt, and I am as comfortable as can be.  No one looks at me strangely; no one bothers me.  I am treated with respect and courtesy… 

…and it’s such an easy feeling that I hardly noticed!

I didn’t really care this morning whether I went out as boy or girl, but decided on girl because I had a more comfortable outfit at hand.Pizza at 3AM

And, that’s the crux – whichever – didn’t matter.

This got me thinking about the weekend…

Whether it was getting pizza at 3:00am wearing a fur-trimmed PVC leotard and thigh-high boots, walking the downtown streets in a bright red latex dress and 5-inch heels or strolling down rue St. Denis in jeans and a t-Escalating shirt, I was completely at ease, and felt totally welcome and accepted.

People addressed me in the feminine, even when they knew otherwise, gentlemen stopped on the street to offer directions when I was looking at a map… it was all so normal!

Bravo, Montreal!

Red Latex Outfit – Pictorial

 

I just loved my new outfit.  It clings like a second skin and stretches with your movement, so it is surprisingly comfortable. 

…and, it’s hot! er.. I mean, sexy!

Sasha and MeWalkin' Down the hallway

 

 

 

 

 

TaDa  Posing at Credenza

Selected Photos from Latextacy

Just some piccies of me…

I had fun playing with this suspended metal ring:

Showing Off

A lovely gal was enjoying my posing and decided to help out:

A Little Raunchy Play

One final shot on the ring:

Standing on the Ring

…and then off for pizza (no one seems to notice me at all… Is a tranny, fully decked out in PVC and thigh-high boots such a regular sight for them?)

Pizza at 3AM

Night of the Masks

The Sunday night party was yet another step up on the intensity scale, and the last chance for everyone to show off!

This night, unlike the others, there was virtually no picture-taking except by the venue organizers. 

E.P.T.

Instead, there was an event during the afternoon – something they called the “Exhibitionist Photo Tour.”  The idea was to go by subway and on foot around town and create a commotion and take some interesting pictures. 2010-09-03 Montreal Fetish Weekend 073a

Unfortunately, I was 5 minutes late and they had left and they were nowhere to be seen by that time, and they left no clue as to where they were going.

That’s bizarre.

Anyway, there were a few other stragglers, equally perplexed, so we decided to do our own little event and hopped in a cab and went downtown, walked around, went into the subway stations – all the while hoping to find the larger group, but to no avail.

Masquerade Ball

The nighttime party was an chance for me to renew acquaintances with some people I had met during the weekend, and to meet up with some older friends, and at least one online friend with whom a meeting never seemed to come off until now.

After traipsing around town in the afternoon, on top of the other weekend events, my feet pretty much gave out.  Wearing 5-inch stilettos and walking long distances was probably not the wisest thing to attempt, but if I were wise, would I be doing any of this?  IMG_8001a

At least I had the pleasure of having a dom tie me up and of walking around in a totally helpless state among several hundred or more strangers.  That was new and exciting for me, and I loved it!

Then, having kicked my heels off and settled in on a bench in the middle of the action, I got two separate foot massages, neither with altogether saintly intentions ;)

Around 4 o’clock in the morning, we decided to call it a night and hobbled off to our room, warmed by the experience of having witnessed a fabulous spectacle, connected with new and old friends, and shared a wonderful time with a great crowd.  We’ve been initiated into the fetish lifestyle, and like my friend said… they’re such nice people, who get along so well, it’s a pleasure to be in their company.IMG_7999a

Stranger than Thou

The truth is, what seems to me to be different about this group (as compared to mainstream society)– is that we all recognize that we are all strange in our own way, so who’s to judge someone else? 

Want to spend a night in a coffin?  Want to wear a diaper?  Lick a stranger’s feet?  Pretend you’re a dog?  Spend the night blindfolded or covered from head to toe in latex? Get electrocuted? 

Why not?  If it makes you happy and harms no one, then why not?  But of course, if you want that mindset applied to you, you must return the favor, right?

There’s lots I just don’t get – and some things I find a bit revolting, to tell the truth – not so much in the sense of begrudging some people their particular fetish, but in wondering what accepting such behavior says about me…

Ah, but that’s a long topic for another time.

Latextacy

I have never owned a piece of latex clothing before this weekend.  PVC, leather sure, but latex always seemed one step too far… and a darned sight more expensive too.IMG_8007a

Well, I figured that if I was going to spend the cash to come all the way here, to Montreal, to the Fetish Weekend, that it was time to invest in a fabulous latex outfit.

And, that’s just what I did.

There is something about the way the fabric becomes like a second skin… and the way it shines…

While I was at it, I figured might as well go red, just to make sure I get noticed…

The Latextacy Ball

That said, I checked my wardrobe and realized that my new latex outfit would have to wait one more night; if I wore it tonight, I’d have nothing to wear to the Vampires Masquerade Ball and Play Party.

So, horrors!  I would be wearing PVC to the Latextacy Ball!

The party was a step up in intensity from Friday night’s affair, and there were more play stations and kinkiness all around.

Most of this stuff is not my scene, so I just marvelled at the costumes and took my fun where I could find it…

… like this metal ring I got to play with…2010-09-03 Montreal Fetish Weekend 051a

  2010-09-03 Montreal Fetish Weekend 056a Beyond that, you could watch – or participate if you dared – in various torture stations, involving flogging, medical play, confinement to coffins, or other horrors – or just watch the show on stage, which demonstrated suspension bondage and electrocution with a violet wand and some other dark implement.

I actually found the whole spectacle quite interesting.  Still, when faced with the idea of going to the After-Party around 3am, I realized that I had just about run of out gas, and went for pizza instead.

Star-Krossed (or maybe not) Kinky Kabaret

This weekend seems not to be one of those things that karma is smiling upon – in fact it seems a tad star-crossed.

I was so distracted and out of sorts on the day of our departure that instead of leaving in the morning, we started out in the middle of the afternoon rush hour.

After making our way through the predictably bad rush hour traffic, we stopped for gas and some onboard food supplies.  Turns out, there was a small gash in the sidewall of one of our tires, which made me a bit nervous.  So, we had to find a garage to look at the tire. 2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 031a

Long story short, the tire ended up being ok, and off we went.

Then we got to our hotel and they gave us a skanky room, which we had to change, and then there was no place to park the car.

The weather was utterly gross Friday, very hot and humid.  Not great weather for my planned outfit for the Kabaret Kink Ball of a fur-trimmed dress with corset and fur hat, huh?  (Damn weather-people said it would cool off!)

Shopping

We were on our way to a sex shop to look for a latex outfit when we got some good luck for a change.  We happened upon a sidewalk sale, where I found a bunch of  fetish clothes pieces for about $10 a piece!  Incredible! 2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 039a

Our bad fortune resumed at the sex shop when I was trying on some tight pants… Unbelievably, I got myself caught in the zipper!

Yes, there!

Oh! My! God!  No joke!  (I guess the damn thing is just too big that it keeps getting in the way…)

Oh, and if there was ever any emerging question as to whether I might be becoming less attached to the little guy, forget that!

Anyhow, I am not accustomed to doing such incredibly stupid things!  Wow!

And, I swear I don’t know why I tell the world these things!

We took a break to recover, and eat, and then went back for a much more successful shopping experience.  2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 075a

Bottom line, I found a spectacular latex outfit, which will come out at Saturday’s Latextacy Ball.

Having a Ball

The Kabaret Kink Ball was a spectacular affair!  We were treated to an amazing assortment of creatively kinky outfits, modeled on the stage of the beautiful Olympia Theatre, followed by an after-party where you could dance and play in a room fitted with flogging stations and such. 

There were breathtakingly beautiful people everywhere you looked, in unbelievable outfits and impossibly high heels!  2010-09-01 Montreal Fetish Weekend 063a1

I even got to meet one of the people I have admired online for some time – Tara Emory – who was in the Fashion Show, as were her fashions, and whose line of custom fetish couture, called Sadie Masokissed (www.sadiemasokissed.com), is second to none!  What a sweetie!

2010-09-01 Montreal  Fetish Weekend 092aWe went back to our room last night around 4:00am and woke up this morning to another dark cloud: police tape and cruisers right at the edge of our hotel… and the news that someone had been shot and killed at 4:30am on the same block!  OMG!

I wonder what’s next?

Kicking the Bucket-List

Ever since I returned home from a recent driving trip, I have been out of sorts.  I have fallen into one of those periods of malaise that affects many crossdressers, I’m sure, where I am just not sure whether the whole thing isn’t just a waste of time.

Self-DoubtIMG_4766a

Despite the many strides I have made, there seems to be a lingering doubt as to whether I am simply being self-destructive, or maybe even undertaking some elaborate form of procrastination.

I mean, I put a lot of time and effort into all things Janie. 

Then, sometimes I find myself face to face with the mirror, thinking, “You’re just such a weirdo.  Wouldn’t your time be better spent on something more constructive?  What good can come of this? Stop trying to be something you’re not!”

Who Am I?

The truth is that I don’t know if this is something I am or something I do – and if the latter, whether it is something I ought not to do.IMG_4772a

Before Janie, I lived for decades never ever remotely contemplating any attraction to men, but now I think about it every day.  Have I perverted my own sexuality, or just started to realize it?

I do know that being this girl I am is risky business.  It brings sexual risk, and it brings social risk.  It is often energizing, but sometimes – as now – energy-sapping.

And, to some extent, it does distract me from pursuing challenges that maybe would be more rewarding, but seem somehow more daunting to me.

The Trigger

What seemed to set this latest episode off was a recent tryst.

There I was in all my glory, with my girlfriend and this voluptuous vixen, having the threesome I’d dreamed about as a guy for… well, since puberty… 

You could scarcely imagine a more bodacious body, or more agreeable company, and everything went wonderfully, but after it was all over, there I IMG_4757a was… no happier than I had been before… no exploding stars… no walking on clouds… no sense of accomplishment even.

It’s not every day you check an item off your Bucket-List with a shrug.

Field of Broken Dreams

Maybe it would be different if we did it again, knowing each other a bit better and feeling more comfortable? (I mean, there are so many things to try once you know your partner(s) better.)  Or, maybe it would be different if it were another woman instead?  Or, maybe if I did it as a guy rather than as Jane?  Or maybe if I was just in a different frame of mind?  Maybe it would be better, maybe worse.  I don’t know.

All of this got me wondering how I might feel if and when I am with a man…

I mean, why go to all that trouble to find the right guy, then take the risk of meeting him and the further risk of sleeping with him, if all I’ll end up with is, well… another one of these episodes…

Chin Up, Wilbur!

A girl’s got to know, though.  And there’s only one way to find out for sure, right?

But for now, I am left with lots of questions and few answers.  And, it’s damn depressing. 

Maybe I should take advantage of this time to do some of those things I have been too busy – or too scared – to do for so long…

Viva Las Vegas TGirl Style!

Ok, fans and fanettes! 

Wildside went to Vegas last week and had a blast!  A week later, everyone’s still in recovery mode!

My head is still spinning, and all the massive and continuous stimulation over 7 of the shortest days in my life is still sinking in!

As I have said elsewhere, I’m a happy, happy girl, tired, warm and aglow in the aura of the sinfully fun memories and precious friendships that bless my life now and into the future!

There is some magic in a group that gets along so well, where everyone supports and loves each other, and which has a blow-out blast every day it is together!

Love to everyone who was there!

And, I leave you today with the big one – the Wildside slideshow with most of what I consider to be the best pics.  Enjoy!

 

Portraits from Wildside Vegas

I collected a bunch of photos that are essentially portraits of the Wildside girls.  I think it worked really well with the music.

We are beautiful after all, aren’t we?

Viva Fun

I cannot believe how much fun we had!  …all the usual Vegas vices, ‘cept, interestingly, much gambling!  This is a group that loves one another and knows how to enjoy itself.  Want proof? Watch:  (sorry if it’s a bit Janie-centric at the beginning).

 

Back to Reality

As much as I enjoyed my first Viva Wildside Sin City Soiree, this one blows that experience a mile out of the water!

I am a bit shy, and it takes a bit for me to open up to people.  Last year, I met a bunch of strangers who turned into sweet friends.  This year, I walked into a room of friends and left with real and much deeper connections.

I imagine this experience just gets better – richer – every year…

As with many of my ilk, it is hard for me to find friends with whom to share the wonderful experience of being Janie.  I spend the year relatively alone in that respect, for the most part.

But, walking into the Viva Suite, I am instantly surrounded by people I have now come to love!  I have seven days to revel in their warmth and humor, optimism and energy, incredible generosity and caring, and I try to give at least as much love as I receive.

We come from all over the continent, and sometimes even further, and it is amazing to see how everyone seems to just become part of this supportive, loving group of partying, fun girls.

It may look like it’s all about the dancing and drinking and flirting and more… but every girl will tell you that all those are secondary to the sincere caring that goes on, following on the example of our fearless leaders, Gina and Nikki.

It is something to behold… a spiritual experience!  Look at the faces in the pictures and you will see what I mean…

 

So Sexy It’s Not Sexy

Saturday was spent largely at the pool, drinking margaritas (sometimes upside-down) and hanging out with friends. 

We had hoped to fit in a special dinner before our Cirque de Soleil show, but one of the key participants couldn’t toe the timeline.  So we made the best of it, and went with Plan B.IMG_4509a

The frenetic pace of the week had taken some, but by no means all, of the energy out of us, and the result was both a lovely afternoon and a mellow dinner where the talk was easy and friendly, at a slower pace.

I was happy for the opportunity to talk with some of the girls I hadn’t had one-on-one time with…

On With the Show

Then the pace picked up again, and we were off, first back to the suite to pick up the tickets, and then to Zumanity, which we made with nary a minute to spare.

The show they put on is nothing short of awe-inspiring. 

Gorgeous bodies in all shapes and flavors – man, woman, black, white, large, small, straight, gay, lesbian and trans – bawdy humor, feats of strength and grace… wow! 

To say there was a man spinning inside a large metal ring, or a woman hula hooping up and down a 5-storey rope, or a couple defying gravity in their sexual acrobatics, or two naked women dancing and slithering and writhing with each other into and out of a large bowl of water… these don’t begin to describe the spectacle! 

…but it was all so strangely… unarousing!  (Now is not the time to speculate on why, and I don’t even have a working theory yet.)

A Show of Our OwnIMG_4594a

As we filed out of the theater, a few of us resolved to get out on the strip and take a few nice shots. (Why should this moment be different than the rest of the week – I had over 1,000 shots by that time, but no matter…)

It is an understatement to say that we cannot walk through a casino or on the IMG_4624astrip unnoticed… even in a jaded city like Las Vegas.  No doubt, most of the spectacle was provided by my friends, next to whom I look like some small town girl.  After all, they were each over 6’ tall with bright blonde hair and dressed in shiny PVC, while I was a demure little redhead, barely 5’9” in heels and a floral print dress. 

But that works for all of us.

Life as a VIP

Friday night was our chance to live it up.  A local gay club – for a fee – treats us like royalty.  We get the total VIP treatment, which means a quick escortIMG_4270a upstairs to the private rooms with bottle service and a view of the dancefloor.IMG_4278b

By this time in the week, the girls have gotten very friendly with one another, and this is the perfect venue to let it all hang out.

Some, by turn, go downstairs and dance among the sweaty, half-naked gay boys, some take their place in one IMG_4230aof the rooms, drink in hand, and interact with those who come by, while others prowl around the suites, seeking conversation and flirtation.IMG_4295b

And, as always, pictures, pictures, pictures.

We inevitably close the place down and are asked politely to leave so the staff can, mercifully, go home…

…but that’s never the end of it, so thank goodness the casinos never close. 

We finally end the night with a bite to eat in the company of good friends… and, punchy as we all were, there was more laughter than food!

Added Pics to Recent Post

For those of you who enjoy pictures – and for those of you for whom pictures enhance the reading experience – I have added several photos to my post That Hot’n’Bothered Feeling in Lingerie that you may wish to go back and see.

I was anxious to get the story out as the days’ events started to tumble one upon the other and I didn’t want to be too far out of date, but I didn’t have the pictures I wanted, residing as they were on friends’ cameras.

So, I decided to post without the photos, and have now added them.

Mood Swings

As much as I felt so warm and fuzzy during the lingerie party, the vibe was decidedly different for the Fetish Night.

I was quite late, and wandered into what I thought was a pretty lifeless room.  As I reported last year, when I arrived early, there was a distinct lack of energy then too.

I am sure that part of it is due to the fact that everyone was out until 6am the previous night.  I know I had no energy despite sleeping later than many.  Everyone I talked to was planning on an afternoon nap.

But, somehow, Fetish Night has a different feeling.  Not everyone is a big player in this field but most go along with the dress and then the trip to Power Exchange.

The highlight of the night was – as it was last year – the jaw-dropping mouth-agape stares we elicit as we march en masse, dressed in our finest fetish-wear, through the casino to the front to our limousine.

We posed for pictures with those brazen enough to come out and ask.

We even had two girls from New York State join our group!

But, once we arrived at PE, everything went quiet again.  Some people did the kink thing, others either took their partners or found new consorts and went into one of the fantasy rooms and presumably did what adults will do, but most wandered around for a while and then kinda sat down and waited for the ride back.

I did try being flogged for the first time, but it was so tame that it didn’t feel like much – good or bad.  I did note that the strokes at the bottom of my back and on my butt felt a lot more interesting, so the door is still open a wee crack…

…oops, did I say that?

That Hot’n’Bothered Feeling in Lingerie

…continued from That Warm Fuzzy Feeling in Lingerie

Still Warm

Among all these wonderful friends of mine, I quickly focused in on this cute blonde in an elegant little black dress.  Not that she wouldn’t have drawn my attention anyway, but that dress in a sea of very revealing lingerie certainly set her apart.

OMG, she’s one of the people I was so excited to finally meet after corresponding with online forever!  Suddenly, I felt like I had shown up at a meeting having forgotten to put my pants on.  After all, she looked so refined, and I looked so… undressed.

After a few minutes of conversation, my self-consciousness melted away, and I knew I had found the makings of another wonderful relationship.  She and I seem to have a very easy and natural compatibility.  

Is it Getting Hot in Here?

In the midst of this little conversation, another one of the truly great souls in the group pulled me aside.  We exchanged a few flirtatious and libidinous words and looks, before she led me into the other room and onto the bed.

I have talked here and there (literally and figuratively) about exploring my sexuality and my limitations, and now I was going to get what I deserved.

She quickly assumed a dominant position with me and I was so utterly turned on to take the submissive role!

Baby, You Can Drive My Car

This is a girl I know I can trust completely in this context, and that allowed me to let myself be totally vulnerable to whatever she wanted to do with me. 

She did things to me that I never imagined I would allow, much less enjoy.  Trust comes in many flavors, but trusting that she knew what she was doing is a big part. 

Not to put too big a point on it – after all it was a pretty tame session by general standards – but at one point, she applied sudden, but controlled force to a vulnerable part of my body, and it hurt, but just the right amount, if that makes any sense.  Rather than protect that area, amazingly, I was so impressed with her skill that I was happy to leave myself open to being hit there again, if she was so inclined.

Psychological Release

I can’t tell you how big a deal it is for me to be able to let someone else take complete control of me. 

I am so much about controlling everything that goes on in my life, and certainly have had erotic fantasies about giving up that control, but reality is another matter.  Obviously, I was fortunate that one of the few people I’d trust was inclined to do it.

There is a certain irony in being liberated through the control of someone else, but the need to control is a pretty confining mentality if you can’t turn it off.

Free at last!  Free at last!  (Thanks, sweetie!)

That Warm Fuzzy Feeling in Lingerie

What a difference a year makes!

Last year, I was just getting to know everyone, and the idea of prancing around in a sexy teddy was quite intimidating for me.  Nonetheless, I sucked it up and my concerns turned out to be much ado about nothing.

I had a very nice time, though I must admit I was fortified then by several pretty strong margaritas.  When the picture-taking began in earnest, I waited for an invitation before climbing on the bed where all the posing and flashing (by both camera and model alike) was going on.

I posted plenty of photos last year.  (Click here to have a look.)

This year, I was among friends.

Until now, we’ve interacted in little groups here and there (excepting the one dinner), but the Lingerie Party was the first big event, where everyone would be together, unrestricted by a seating arrangement at a long table – free to move about and talk with everyone at their pleasure.

Also, there was an open bar…

It hit me pretty quickly, how many “close friends” I had made over the course of the last year – at the last soiree and then online. 

I don’t tend to call acquaintances “friends,” much less add modifiers that make even more of the relationship, but I truly had the warm feeling of walking into a room full of people who cared about me and to whom I mattered.  (And being warm wearing as little as I was, was no small thing.)

I may sound like a blubbering and sentimental fool, but to actually see a person’s face light up at the sight of me is one of the more special feelings I can get.  And there was just so much of that going on everywhere I looked.  And, of course, their smiles were reciprocated by me from the bottom of my heart.

I was like a kid in a candy store, not knowing which way to turn.  My tendencies run toward the loner – or at least a one-on-one type person, so juggling the attention of several people, all of whom I desperately wanted to hang out with and enjoy, was an overwhelming and, of course, impossible task.

…but a happy problem to have…

Lingerie Party – The Next Level

OMG! Lingerie Party was the best! … a people-meeting, friendship-renewing, raunchy, erotic, ecstatic experience into the wee hours!

… More in a bit…

Club 54

Another big dancing night… had to ditch my boots for cute running shoes to deal with the pain… fun flirting and sexy gyration!  Things are heating up!

 

IMG_3819

Ice Bar

Minus 5 Ice Lounge! Glasses and bar made out of ice. Almost worth the $25!
47 secs ago from TweetDeck

Poolside

Making the most of prolly the best pool day likely this week…just relaxg, letting it wash over me blissfully. http://twitpic.com/1h4li6

Revolution

Danced my feet off at Revolution Lounge, despite the best efforts of the self-indulgent dj. Love these gals!

Group Dinner

Yummy viva Chinese food, finally! And of course, pink cocktails! http://twitpic.com/1gz1vs

The Friendly Skies

Janie-girl is thru airport security… such a rush travelling as girl! Security looked at my pic and smiled@me. http://twitpic.com/1gvgxd
-43 secs ago from TweetDeck

California Girl

I have returned to San Diego, to spend a couple of weeks before the wild party that is Viva Wildside in Las Vegas.

More than any place I have been, San Diego is a place in which I feel comfortable being Janie all the time and whenever and wherever I please

So, I am loving just being me.  A simple pleasure, but a special one for a tgirl out and about, I think.  IMG_3010a

Today, I am in bikini, by the hotel pool, doing some work and enjoying a wind-less, mid-seventies sunny southern California day.     

Not much to write about, but that’s kinda the point.

Peace and comfort may not make for good headlines, but I cannot tell you how much I appreciate being able to just be part of a community where no one seems to care in the slightest whether I am boy or girl or something in between.

I can go to the supermarket and shop…

I hailed a cab…

I went to a pizza joint and not only got a spectacular pizza and Red Stripe beer, but the sweeties gave me a nice discount…

Normal life, non-events… all a pretty big deal when you’re looking through my eyes!

And if, during my stay here, I get hit on in a bar, or asked to dance, that’ll put the cherry on top of my sundae… but it’s not necessary, that’s for sure!

Blast from the Past!

I spent the most wonderful weekend in Las Vegas at a rockabilly festival, dancing, listening to rock’n’roll legends, watching jive dance contests, admiring all the hipsters in their fabulous outfits and retro hairdos, going to a tiki pool party, seeing those incredible old cars, and buying swanky clothes…

…just having a blast with great, fun people and phenomenal music!

My girlfriend really wanted to share this experience with me as a boy – and it made a lot of sense to me too – we could dance together and get into the vibe of a bygone time, and meet all these people without having the TG thing in the way.

The one torture I had to endure was going through the vendor area and desperately wanting to try on those fabulous 40s, 50s and 60s dresses! 

The closest I got was having her try them on and vicariously enjoying them through her…  Not entirely altruistic was I since we often share the same size, and I will try on every one that we bought, in due course!

And, fate was smiling on me…

In one booth, there was a pair of black and white peekie-toe patent pumps, really cheap, and ONLY in MY size!  GF was kind enough to let me surreptitiously try them on, and I’m happy to say, they now occupy their rightful place in my closet!

Looking Back at 2009

Ok, ok.

Writing that last post got me thinking about last year’s resolutions, and even more so, about what I had accomplished, or not.

Clearly, there were no earth-shattering changes to this blog – as I’d hoped, but I did manage to get a video on my blog before year-end, and this year I will definitely do some blogs by talking into a camera rather than typing.

I promised to meet more t-girls, and I did that too.  I went to Fantasia, as I had the year before, but also added a trip to Las Vegas and one to Southern Comfort in Atlanta.  Getting to know different groups of gals, and noticing where there were overlaps was fabulous and rewarding, and I probably cherish my new friends above all the things I accomplished last year.

I admit to being lazy about going to monthly meetups locally, and maybe I will try that again this year.

Looking back on’09, there were a number of firsts for me…

I registered my domain name www.cdjanie.com which makes me very happy; putting my site there would be even better!

I flew on a plane in a skirt and t-shirt!

I went to a hair salon and got a totally feminine hairdo!

And, I even expanded my sexual horizons a teenie-tiny bit!

Baby steps I know, but I’ll be patient with myself…

10 Things I Love About Having a TG Spouse

I hope you’ll indulge me one more post that relates to my October trip to Provincetown, MA.

I had every intention of making this year’s trip to Cape Cod a relaxing and slow-paced affair; I promised myself this week would be about just hanging out and thinking about stuff. Didn’t quite work out that way, but I’m still happy I went.

I still marvel at the mess I made of packing for this trip, taking so much stuff and not having anything appropriate to wear half the time! Also, because I was excited to make the most of the great bargains I had found in Philadelphia, my feet were so sore from wearing one new pair of shoes after the other that I had absolutely no choice but to wear my clodhopper boy shoes all day on the Friday – note to self: be sure to buy a girly version of these. The oddball outfit I concocted was something to behold.

Shopping in P’town was hit and miss. Given all the 50%-off sale signs, I decided that I’d look for a nice sweatshirt and girly baseball cap for cheap. But despite stepping into probably 10 stores, there was nothing acceptable, nothing without “Provincetown” or “Cape Cod” or the Red Sox emblem on it that was discounted. On the other hand, I did manage to pick up two super bargains at Eros: a great leather and nylon crop-top and a chain-mail negligé – you’ll have to wait to see those. And, of course, there was that insane shopping spree at Wardrobe!

In our never-ending search for just the right place to sit and chill, we once decided to use the Hospitality Suite during the afternoon, but our plan was thwarted by the presence of a class/seminar called 10 Things I Love About My TG Relationship. They were enthusiastic about having us stay and participate, going so far as to show me a list that they had previously compiled and asking for our input. It was surprising – almost to the point of being unsettling – how similar are the experiences of this group of vastly different people and how many of the things on the list resonated with us!

But, interesting or not, we had other things on our minds, and we left after a few minutes.

That list of 10 things women love about their TG spouse… you wanted it, didn’t you? Well, here it is:

10 Things I Love About Having a TG Spouse

Serious

  1. The sweet person that you fell in love with has a feminine side
  2. You chose him for a reason
  3. Some of the things that attracted you are from the femme side of his personality
  4. His look is one of the things that you noticed
  5. The way her reacts to you
  6. The way he really wants to understand you
  7. The way he deals with his mom (or yours), his sister, grandmother, aunts
  8. When he says that he loves everything about you, he really means it
  9. He really wants to spend time just being with you
  10. When he says he will never hurt you, he really means it

Silly

  1. He understands the need for six black skirts
  2. He understands the need for six black purses
  3. He understands the need to go shoe shopping
  4. He understands that you feel better if your underwear matches
  5. He really wants to see what not to wear
  6. He loves to people-watch
  7. He loves to be a member of the fashion police
  8. He understands that some curse words are really offensive
  9. He will watch chick flicks with you
  10. He will loan you his stuff

Simple

  1. You never run out of shampoo, conditioner, shaving gel, razors, pantyhose, mascara, blue eye shadow
  2. The only person in the world that will hold you while you have cramps and say “If I could have them for you, I would” and mean it
  3. When you nurse your child, the look in his eyes
  4. When he says you look beautiful when you are eight months pregnant, he really means it
  5. He understands that giving birth is a miracle
  6. He never laughs when you cry at romantic movies
  7. He can and will hold you when you cry
  8. The hurt look when you do lash out at him
  9. He can hold a conversation
  10. He really does want to know what you are thinking

Let’s hear your comments. I couldn’t believe how many of these applied to my relationship! There were only about 3 in total that we couldn’t relate to.

 

 

Goodbye Fantasia for Another Year

Our Fantasia experience was winding down, and it was time to say goodbye to those who weren’t going back to the hospitality suite, including my potential guitarist for next year’s Follies. The club started playing some 1980s disco to close out the night, tunes like Celebration, You Make Me Feel Mighty Real, Hot Stuff, IMG_1228a etc. We were saying good bye, but the wives wanted to dance to this stuff, and who (she says, cringing) were we to say no?

The songs soon ended and then it was really goodbye. I’m sure we’ll see them at Southern Comfort next year, and meanwhile, we have an act to plan!

If truth can be found in the bottle, then we also have a (fairly drunk) new admirer from home, and not a bad looker either. It will be interesting to see whether anything comes of that…

The hospitality suite was only across the street, but by the time I managed to pry the door open, my feet were killing me again, and I staggered through the door with a staccato, "Owww… oww… ow!" to guffaws of laughter. (Where’s the sympathy, empathy, support and understanding?)

Off came the boots that seemed to have fused themselves into the bones of my feet during the last chorus of Disco Inferno, and my feet hurt even in stockings alone! I kept looking at my feet to be sure my boots were, indeed, off! It took a few minutes for them to decompress. I kinda wanted to avoid nerve damage, y’know!

We sat and talked with various people for a while, though I was too tired to make conversation. One of our friends came over and made us laugh; her company was so enjoyable all week long, and I am certainly going to miss her through the year!

More girls kept showing up as we got into the wee hours of the morning, and we knew most everyone. That’s such an amazing thing about this event. I almost always keep to myself when I’m thrown into a big group, but for some reason, I have gotten to know a lot of the girls and we all genuinely like each other! Sounds like hooey, but that’s the way it is!

We also found out that two of our friends, with whom our friendship has flourished on this trip completely separately from one another, happen to live near each other and know each other very well. It’s funny how that works.

When it came time to say goodbye (that was when we were so tired, we weren’t sure we could walk the 50 feet to our room), it took an hour, with promises of seeing each other during the year and making it back to Provincetown next year. I even had to promise to be in the show. It was touching to be so warmly treated, and told, most sincerely, that we are now part of the family. There was some talk of us going to one of their events, or them coming to visit our fair city, and who knows, it may happen. But Fantasia #36 waits in the background; in case we can’t connect on our own, it will be there to ensure that we all have a place to come and renew and revive our friendships.

I hobbled back to the room, we packed and went to sleep; it was 4:30 am.

After the Follies

After the show, we congratulated our friend – a local who does a terrific impression of Phyllis Diller – and some of the other acts on their performances. I know what a high it can be after a show, being the center of attention and all.

But seriously, there was free food over at the dance club, probably getting cold every minute we wasted!

Yes, yes, we had dinner. But everywhere we went, everyone was making a fuss over GF’s outfit, and scarcely anyone even had the courtesy to even mutter an obligatory “You look good too,” to me. That kind of disregard can drive a girl to… eat! And they had all my most fattening faves – an all-you-can stuff-into-your-corset buffet of piggies in a blanket, mini quiches, meatballs, cheese cubs, crackers, and sandwiches on croissants – they made sure each mouthful was at least 500 calories.

Fortunately, as I intimated, and you can see from the photos, I was wearing a corset, snugly fitted, so that I couldn’t really eat much. I know I looked damn good, but sometimes GF simply outshines me! It wouldn’t be fair if I got all the attention, now would it? I get plenty… mostly from her! She is happy to leave the spotlight to me, and was a bit surprised by all the attention she was getting, though I wasn’t – I was just hoping that someone would find the time to notice me as well…

I had saved my feet all day but they were killing me again, so I sat down. That didn’t do me any favors in the attention-getting department either. But, using GF’s radiance, we managed to reel in a couple of friends for conversation, one of whom was in the show. We thought she was pretty good, but her wife was not that impressed, and she herself thought she’d been better before. She did relate what must have been a fun experience for her, and one I’d love to have seen – the singer/piano player in the hotel bar, who does lots of show tunes, let her sit on the piano and lip-synch to his songs during his show.

I also may have found a partner-in-crime for next year’s Follies – a backup musician to my singing. And her friend apparently knows Chuck Berry pretty well! Maybe we can do a little tribute… News as it becomes available, only on this channel!

The bench was getting crowded with girls who couldn’t walk any more, and it was pretty funny. But a couple of the more lively (and drunk) girls got us up dancing, and despite my poor tootsies, we danced for a half hour and had a very nice time. I decided it was my duty, as a t-girl, to ignore the pain that would cause a real (read: sane) woman to remove her shoes, and dance in my sexy heels and move my body gracefully to the music, as if I was feeling all sexy and groovy.

I must have succeeded. I even noticed a few guys looking me up and down – ah, my adoring public! I haven’t often been on the other end of the full-scan look-over that guys can’t seem to help doing to a girl that catches their attention. And, I didn’t mind… I know what it’s like to be unable to stop your eyes from doing that, and you just hope she doesn’t notice – because women tend to get offended by such things. I was just glad someone could focus on me… it didn’t hurt that GF was on the other side of the dancefloor.

(Note about these two photos: these are two people, whom we found to be very quiet since we met them last year, and through Southern Comfort and into this Fantasia Fair. Turns out there’s a whole other side to them! Goll, darn!)

Lobster Done Right and then The Follies

Before dinner, we stopped by the port and cheese spread that the hotel has put out every day and we have missed every day. There were still people there, but no wine and no cheese. Missed it again!

We met one of the Fair organizers there – a girl who had strongly suggested last year that I drop the wig and go with my own hair. She is a really sweet person and she’s still giving me hair advice. Thanks V!

We stayed a while and talked, but we had to go before we ended up without dinner again, so we made our excuses and were on our way back to the Lobster Pot for a proper lobster dinner this time.

The Peach Cosmo I had was properly pink, but a really lame drink, it must be said. Fortunately, they are much more expert in their handling of lobster, which was succulent and sweet and altogether yummy. I do love Surf and Turf, and they offer a nice deal on a steak as an add-on to the lobster, so we saved a bit of money by ordering that instead of two lobster dinners. We started with lobster bisque and shrimp cocktail.

Shrimp cocktail is a noble appetizer, and these shrimp were quite delicious. But, the best thing about shrimp cocktail has always been the pornographic playfulness you can have with it. Have a look… (almost got caught, hee hee!)

The lobster is a tactile and undignified animalistic experience, breaking shells and sucking out flesh… but utterly sensuous too! Messy, loud, butter glistening on your lips and fingers, and the haunting taste of this delicacy, made all the better with a little flute of champagne. We were having a special occasion, no doubt… you could tell by the bibs we were wearing… very distinguished!

We finished up just in time to walk over to the Follies Talent Show. No doubt, there’s pretty fair talent within the group. The lip-synching is generally not my fave but the song selection and stage presence made it very entertaining; I don’t know where they found these peculiar, funny and musically enjoyable songs. There were also original acts, musical, comedic and dramatic. And there was a serious side to all this; the show raised money for a local aids organization. One of our friends who is involved with it got up on stage to encourage donations and revealed that she has been HIV-positive for a number of years…She’s fine, but the medication she has to take is so very expensive and government programs don’t cover everything, so donations are critical.

My friend from the wine and cheese affair came to the show vamped up in a slinky red number and ready to do what was necessary to get her bucket filled with contributions for the cause. For my little donation, I got a delicious kiss and a smile; I’ll be making that contribution again, you can be sure!

During the intermission I was fooling around with camera taking pics of myself when I get tapped on the shoulder and look around to see a semi-familiar face in reddish hair. “Tracy,” she says, smiling – and I immediately recognize last year’s striking blond as this equally fetching redhead. (See my story from last year.) I was so happy to see her, but we only got to talk for a couple of minutes before the second half of the show started. Pretty well all we had time for besides the warm hellos was for her to encourage me to come to First Event and for me to encourage her to make the trip to Las Vegas. (See Viva Las Vegas, Baby!) I didn’t see her again after the show, but I held out hope that she’d show up later at the hospitality suite as she had last year. She didn’t. :(

I have to say that this was the first time during the trip that a relationship I had from last year did not improve substantially during my time at the Fair this year… and she was one of the people I was most looking forward to seeing! It just goes to show you that things never turn out as planned, and often they turn out so much better! People I had met only briefly last year have become so generous and friendly to me and I reciprocated these feelings completely. The deepening of these relationships is the most profound thing I will take home with me from this trip, and I hope to see these people during the year and again next year.

Dinner for Four

On our way to dinner, we met up with a couple of the Fantasia stalwarts in the hotel bar. They were enjoying a quiet drink but we struck up an easy conversation and could have talked for hours if not for the fact that we had to get ready for dinner. I didn’t even get a chance to do my hair properly or shave but threw on one of my newly bought dresses, and newly bought shoes, and looked pretty nice if I don’t say so myself.

Dinner was pleasant and it was nice to see a couple that seemed in a lot more trouble last year on the road to reconciliation. There is still quite a hill to climb, but they’re on the road. Still, you can feel the stress as you touch the points of contention, but they do seem to love each other, so whether they end up back together or remain apart, it looks hopeful that they will still have each other, which is great.

We’re tired – did I mention that before? So we’re finally going to make an early night of it!

Wardrobe Problem

(Getting back to Provincetown and Fantasia Fair)

The next day, I got up with a wardrobe problem. I really had nothing appropriate to wear for this couples’ dinner we were now invited to. We seemed to bring so much more stuff than for Atlanta, but somehow we had so much less! Weird!

A local friend of ours has a clothing shop called Wardrobe that was having a 50% off sale, so went to see him to see if we could solve our problem.

Turns out, we ended up with an even more serious Wardrobe problem!

The guy only stocks one of each dress, and yet, every dress I picked out and tried on not only fit me like Cinderella, but looked really, really good! I’ll show them all of to you over time, you can be sure!

We were there for hours, spending both cash and time we needed for other things. We walked out with a pile of dresses, wigs, hats, accessories… thank goodness we weren’t flying! All that stuff barely fit in our car!

Now, when am I going to get my chill-time, my thinking time, my down-time?

Perspective and Pinball at Fantasia

The Fashion Show is one of the two events with some buzz at the Fair. They are open to the public, and the townsfolk lap it up! Both raise money for local charities.

I have commented last year, and it bears repeating, that the girls in the Fashion Show get a rare thrill – to be applauded and shown public love from a large group of people – and all they have to do is muster up the guts to walk to the end of the runway and back. It’s a coming out party of sorts, and gives the girls a boost of confidence. It is one thing to walk around town and hope no one notices you; quite another to stand on stage and say to the world, “Here I am!”

Not that I am minimizing in any way the tremendous feeling a timid and closeted girl can get from walking along the town streets. For me, that was at least as important as the Fashion Show because it was such a simple, normal thing to do that I had not done before. Simple and mundane can be boring – mostly because you do it all the time without thinking – but when you can’t do the simple and mundane, they become a very big deal!

Sitting in the crowd, it was nice to enjoy the show from a different perspective – no pressure, no attending practices – and there were a number of girls who had participated last year who were now in the crowd with the same idea. It was nice seeing them again and reminiscing about our experience backstage and what the new girls are going through.

Watching the show, I recognized one of the girls as a girl I had met once at home. She was on cloud nine after doing this and is going through much the same experience I did last year, with the same attitude of trying everything. I’m sure when I meet her back home, she will be a different person than she was the last time.

Another of the models was the girl who was directly in front of me in the show last year. We had lots of time to talk last year waiting to go on stage. She was back again for a return engagement and looked just fine. Thing is, she’s very comfortable as a woman and experienced in being on stage, so it’s almost too easy for her.

We caught up with her after the show and she was glad to see us even though she didn’t remember our names; truth be told, if they hadn’t introduced her on stage, I wouldn’t have remembered hers either… but why should that stop me from making her feel bad, right? J You meet so many people at these things that remembering names is an overwhelming task. No offense can be taken for forgetting, that’s for sure.

When we met up with her, she had picked up an admirer who was trying his best to be more than friendly. We all walked up the hill together, talking, and Admirer, who evidently is not very particular, started flirting with me since our friend’s attention was being occupied by my GF. For him one tranny is as good as the next, I guess. Convenient then that the wine and cheese party we were going to was a private affair, so it was easy to ditch him.

It turns out, as I think it may have last year also, that the wine and cheese party was actually a port and dessert party. Nothing wrong with that, but we hadn’t had dinner. Even though I didn’t have to get ready for the show this year, or attend rehearsal, and even though we ended up at the only late-night eatery in town – Spiritus Pizza – both the first and second nights, I didn’t manage to make time for dinner before the show, so we had little choice but to go for pizza for the third straight night.

Going back there for pizza with her was reminiscent of last year when we and other models from the Fashion Show went out to eat after the show and had a grand old time getting to know each other. She was very easy to talk to then, and this year, with only the three of us at the pizza joint, we seemed to pick up where we left off. It turns out that our friend, who had announced to us last year that s/he and his wife were separating after a long marriage and it didn’t look good, was far more hopeful this year, and amazingly, with time to gain distance and perspective, she agreed to come along to the Fair! We were so happy for them!

As it happens, the stories I heard this year about people’s situations generally were a lot more positive than last year, when pretty much exclusively the refrain was, “My wife found out, we’re getting divorced.” Or, “I can’t take living in the closet any more and my wife can’t cope – we’re getting a divorce.” This year, first off, a number of t-girls that came alone last year brought their wives along. And, second, the stories were more hopeful.

On the way back to the hotel, our friend invited us to join them for dinner tomorrow night, and we’re plenty looking forward to it.

She went to join her wife in their room, and we went into the bar to see what was shakin’. Not much, it turns out, so I had a go at the pinball machine and did pretty well – won 2 free games! (… even if I may not have looked very ladylike in the process…)

More interesting was the surprising approach from a Fantasia acquaintance of ours. We stayed at the same hotel last year and met her and her wife now and again for breakfast – and later in the week, we also met another couple with whom they are friends – but they seemed never more than civil to us and we found it hard to carry on a conversation with them. We just assumed they weren’t interested in us. We met them again at Southern Comfort with a similar experience. I don’t know if that has changed for some reason, or if they just came off distant because they were shy, but it’s nice to finally be friends.

Coming Clean

This is supposed to be my week of R&R, and half-way through I’ve still not remotely caught up on my sleep. I tend to need close to 8 hours generally, but for some reason I’m waking up after about six.

The multiple coffees and cocktails might have something to do with it, I guess.

With the Fashion Show tonight and being in and around town, I expect to run into many more people – old acquaintances and new – and as much as I needed the rest and relax, I may very well be more concerned about the bags under my eyes, which are making me look very old and tired indeed. No amount of concealer seems to be able to disguise my fatigue. How vain a girl am I?

For once – it has been a long time – I started the day off right, by eating oatmeal for breakfast and then going for a run. We ran out to the west end through a lovely neighborhood with nice homes and cottages for rent on the beach – beautiful. Note to self: keep these in mind for a future visit. Also stopped for a photo op on the rocks near the lighthouse.

Exercising felt so good, as did the long slow stretching afterward.

Then, I stepped into the shower.

Our room has this wonderful shower unlike any I had been in before. There is the usual massaging showerhead above, but there are two strategically placed jets on the opposite wall… So, you are drenched in water from front and back… The higher jet was positioned so it hit me between the shoulder blades while the lower one pulsated against my lower back. It didn’t take me long to realize that if I just got up on my tippie toes and leaned forward, well… ooohh!… I mean, I’ve just got to put one of these in my home!

Emerging from the shower in a comfy robe, I could have slept the afternoon away just then, but there were things that had to get done.

First, we had lunch – a characteristically middle-of-the-road yet highly fattening affair – and then went to the Fantasia office to see about registering.

All along, we debated whether or not to register for the Fair. We wanted to support the event and be part of the group, but considering our intention for very limited participation, it really wasn’t worth it for us to spend the kind of money we expected it would cost. In the end, we figured we would be open and let them know where we were at and see what their reaction was. They were incredibly understanding and accommodating.

It was very much like my experience last year, when I was happy to pay the full load and participate fully, but I didn’t want to give them my real name. They allowed me to register anyway and accepted cash at the door and never demanded more information from me than I was comfortable providing. They truly bend over backwards to allow all of us to participate with the highest degree of comfort and acceptance. That’s the spirit of Fantasia!

Credentials in hand, we were off to the Purple Feather Coffee Shop for some reading/thinking/coffee until it was time to go see the Fashion Show.

Lobster Pot on the Beach

Tranny Week aside, Provincetown is a wonderful place. A small town on the Cape, with beaches and shops and a nice warm feel.

Among its charms is the seafood, and one of the standard-bearers in this regard is the Lobster Pot.

We went there thinking we’d have dinner, but the menu was a bit overwhelming so we started with a drink. In our short time here, we have found more inventive drink menus here than in the vast majority of big-city bars we’ve been to.

Nice cocktails and a view of the beach… now this is the life!

Our waiter returned and enticed us into ordering appetizers – famous clam chowder and a lobster-avocado salad. Yum!

We lingered over our view and our seafood and our drinks for a while… When the waiter returned seeking our main-course order, we felt a little bad for him that we had been quite satisfied with what we’d already had and were not going to order any more. He seemed fine with it, and we’ll probably be back to have that main course later in the week.

Cycle of Support

Our new lesbian friend finally got her wish – she had wanted to propose to her girlfriend at a karaoke bar in town in front of everyone, and finally the girlfriend relented and agreed to go.

Naturally, they invited us along.

When we got there, they made a beeline for the bar to get more liquid courage into their systems, while we ran into some long-lost friends.

One of the great things about Fantasia Fair – the best thing in fact – is that you make friends so easily and these people are like old schoolmates that you can always talk to, even after years apart.

Among the girls there were two gals who really helped me out last year when I was just finding my legs, encouraging me to participate in the Fashion Show and making it so easy and fun. More than being teachers, mentors, guides – I’m not sure what to call it – they had a genuine caring and affection for me – and all the girls. Now, they are just sweet wonderful friends of mine at the Fair. And my life is richer for knowing them, even if I only get to see them for a few days a year.

There was also a young girl who was even shyer than I was last year and had declined to participate in the fashion show, but had mustered the courage to do it this year. Her confidence had grown over the year, and she even managed to meet a girl who loves her with full knowledge of her feminine side.

New girls were also around and being quickly embraced into the group. Timid and hesitant as we were last year, I felt happily obliged to comfort and encourage them, to learn their stories and relate whatever experiences of mine that I thought might help them. This cycle of support is what sustains the Fair, and makes it special.

Before I knew it, we were talking and catching up and having a grand old time, and three hours had passed. I’m not really sure what happened to the happy couple, but they were nowhere to be found.

We closed the bar, so the whole bunch of us moseyed on over to the town’s late night pizza joint and ordered a pizza and sat and talked some more. Tranny war stories, movies, personal experiences, teasing, joking… it was great. Lots of laughter and warmth… smiles all around.

We got to bed by 3 am, which was only about 4 hours later than we’d hoped, since we were really tired and wanted to make it an early night.

He’s a Lying, Cheating Homo

Continuing my story from last night, our lesbian friend did manage to propose to her belle, and near as I could tell, the answer was yes. I say this because champagne was offered around and I saw them hugging. But she still didn’t seem satisfied for some reason…

She also was still perplexed by my existence and so was her fiancée. “You’re straight, right?” asked the lesbian fiancée.

“Well,” I said, “that depends on what you mean by being straight.”

“I mean, you’ve never slept with a man,” she replied, without the slightest hesitation or awareness of how odd it was to be saying such a thing to a woman… or the slightest consideration or empathy for how that might make someone who is trying to be a woman feel.

I’m not the type to let poor manners bother me generally, but I did find it a bit rich that this lesbian, who craves and demands acceptance for who and what she is, should so brazenly disregard my appearance and treat me as she would any regular man.

“Yup, straight then,” I answered, much to her chagrin. But I knew where she was going with this, so, after a pause, I fed her some ammunition just for fun. “But, as a straight woman, I can’t help thinking about what it would be like…”

I’m a bit of a devil, and I was toying with her; she jumped in with both feet. She went over to my GF to discuss my homosexual tendencies with her, hoping to protect her from her lying, cheating, dishonest man – aren’t all men just beneath contempt?

It was delicious.

“You’re straight, right?

“Yes.”

“But he wants to sleep with a man!” came the epic revelation (and notice the pronoun again, BTW).

“That’s what straight girls do.” GF said, non-plussed, setting her straight on my gender in the process.

“Doesn’t it bother you?”

“Hell no! You gotta have variety, and I have everything, man and woman. Think of all the possibilities!” And then, the tables turned, “What puzzles me is why you’d want to be a lesbian. No variety at all. You’re a woman, she’s a woman… everything’s the same…”

Sometimes it pays to be a devil…

What a Difference a Year Makes

I arrived in Provincetown last night, tired and fighting a cold.

Tonight, I’m at Bayside Betsy’s bar listening to cheesy Olivia Newton-John tunes like “If you love me let me know, if you don’t then let me go…” and Neil Diamond, and drinking a very delicious Ginger Collins – a Tom Collins with a kick of ginger – very good.

I expect that tomorrow, I will go over to the Fantasia Fair registration office and say hello to those I know and tell them that I’d like to maybe have lunch with them a couple of times and attend a few of their shows, but that I won’t be registering for the conference or attending any of the galas or seminars.

Last year, I was excited to participate in everything and meet everyone. This year, my intention is to chill out, rest, and think about my future as this dual-gendered person. I am so much more comfortable as Janie than I was last year, and I am so much closer to knowing who I am and what I want.

Being both male and female is intoxicating and a great deal of fun for me!

A girl came over to me and my GF and struck up a conversation. She was tossing around the idea of proposing to her girlfriend this very night and was seeking our support. But the conversation soon turned to who or what Janie was.

She asked me if I am like this all year long and I explained to her, “Yeah! I’m not always a girl, but I’m sometimes a girl all the time.” (And, that’s the beautiful truth.)

That seemed to throw her a bit. She looked at my GF and said, “But she’s a man in bed, though.”

“Not always.”

“Huh?”

My GF laughed, knowingly.

Our new friend thought about the possibilities, especially from her lesbian point of view. “I guess it saves having to boil the strap-on,” said our new friend, cutting to the chase.

“Not always!” said my GF with a twinkle in her eye…

Outed at the Airport

You think you have prepared for all eventualities, and then it happens…

I have done my best during the time I have been crossdressing to separate my real identity from Janie’s.

But, apparently, all it takes is some stupid airline gate agent who has nothing better to do at 5 o’clock in the morning than to announce people’s names and ask them to come to the desk to verify the information they have entered when checking in online.

WTF!

And, just to make matters worse, it seems Atlanta’s airport has the loudest and clearest P.A. system I’ve ever heard.

I’d have ignored her, but she kept repeating my name!

All of this would not have mattered except that just prior to these announcements, I had noticed a t-girl sitting in our gate whom I had met at the conference and who will be on our plane home.

So there you have it…

If she can remember my girl name, and put it together with what she has just heard, she’ll know more than I’d like. It’s really all up to her, but she has all the pieces of the puzzle I’d hoped to keep jumbled up and separated.

Let the “what-ifs” begin…

Gala Day at Southern Comfort

Big things were planned for Saturday, but it mostly ended up being a quiet day for me.

The pool party was confined indoors when the rains came back. This meant many people in a small, chlorine-smelling, humid area. Needless to say, I didn’t stay long – only long enough for a photo op.  (click to enlarge)

That evening was the gala ball. It is a rare treat to go to a black-tie event, especially when you get to wear a fancy gown. So, I took full advantage. The girls were all dressed so beautifully and the only thing missing was an army of handsome tuxedo-clad men to escort us. Oh, well!

The best part of the evening, though, again was simply sitting in the bar, mingling, meeting new people. We made a few new friends that night who might just turn out to be the most compatible with us of any we had met during the conference.

It’s funny, because the very same thing happened at Fantasia Fair last year!

 

Robin – the Gurl Wonder

In my last post, I started talking about Friday, but got lost and never found my way back.

The night’s event was a cocktail party and dinner with a heroes and heroines theme. We were asked to dress up as superheroes, but on a more serious note, to honor the real heroes that have touched our lives – community leaders, teachers, mentors, etc.

I hate to sound like a ditz, but I have to admit that I never got around to even considering the serious side of the evening. I did manage, however, to fish out from the depths of my closet a Robin costume that I can’t , for the life of me, figure out why I bought way back when.

Anyhow, Robin is in fact, as we all know, a girl’s name, and this was a pretty sexy girl version of Batman’s Boy Wonder’s outfit. Besides, Robin always looked like a weenie in his costume, didn’t he?

I was recruited to help check people’s tickets for the dinner, so I got to see everyone’s costume one by one as they entered. Wonder Woman was not as common as you might think, and there was at least one Condom Fairy. Batgirl and Catwoman showed up, as did a few X-Men characters. But about half the people chose not to dress in theme.

I didn’t last long at dinner as my mask started making my eyes tear, and I actually started not to feel right… not sure whether the stress was getting to me or the lack of sleep of what, but I decided to take a break and lie down in my room for a half an hour.

On the way up, I ran into a friend who was staying at the hotel but not participating in the conference per se; she just looked at me in my costume and laughed.

After my rest, I changed into something more appropriate for clubbing or partying, and went back down. There was supposed to be an outing to a club, but I guess I missed the boat. Instead, I got caught up in conversation with that friend and through her and her group, met a few others.

I had a great time sitting around catching up with the old and getting to know the new, and before we knew it, it was past 1am, and there was a suite party starting.

Well, as everyone knows, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, and so it is with my friend. Suffice it to say, we continued our conversations upstairs in the midst of some edgy, somewhat raunchy company.

(click on the images for larger versions.)

Social Butterfly

Friday at Southern Comfort got a lot more crowded. By now, the sight of a massive group of t-girls seems more normal than not…

I spent a while at Starbucks, finding out how far behind in my emails I had fallen and trying to write up some of my experiences.

I was hoping to get some exercise and some shopping in, but no dice. To be honest, I just didn’t get up any desire to shop. Maybe it was sensory overload, I don’t know, but the urge just wasn’t there.

On some level, I am so overwhelmed that I don’t know what I feel. I haven’t been able to catch my breath. There are about 800 attendees at Southern Comfort, and meeting everyone is a large part of the event.

Truth be told, I am not much of a social butterfly. I want very much to make new friends, but meeting so many new people in such a short time, remembering their names and stories is a big challenge for me.

And, more to the point, I am not one who collects friends just to be able to say I have a lot. I want to really get to know some people and if I can make a few good friends, that would be priceless.

Everywhere I turned I found attractive, interesting and nice people. Plus, I am interested in hearing people’s stories because it helps me understand this phenomenon a bit better and understand myself a bit better.

Click for larger image. (Thanks to Kimberly for this shot.)

So, I made the effort to make conversation.

That’s hard for me at the best of times, but I also discovered that this group presents special challenges.

They say that if you want to facilitate conversation with someone, get them to talk about themselves. Well, if it works generally, it is exponentially more effective among trannies… who, it must be told, are often difficult to stop from talking about themselves.

The unfortunate consequence of that is that once you get them started on themselves, they are very forthcoming but will never ask you anything about yourself or your experience – probably for fear of having you go off in the same way…

I don’t mean to generalize – of course it doesn’t apply to everyone – but it did apply to a clear majority of people I talked to at the conference. Oh well, their loss; I am richer for hearing and knowing all these interesting stories.

Of course, I shouldn’t be so presumptuous as to discount the possibility that they simply didn’t find me interesting enough to care about my story.

But self-involved or just disinterested, there were so many people to meet that, even so, I’m sure I will get my handful of enduring friendships out of this event – and that’s all I could ask for!

Friends Old and New

We’ve just returned to our room from a two-hour talk with a fascinating older couple from Texas.

It’s amazing the type of people you meet at this place. It was pointed out to me that crossdressers are, in the vast majority, successful and educated people. The time and thought and open-mindedness required to be a CD makes this true. Transsexuals are another matter entirely.

It is an interesting theory, supported by the sampling of people I have met at this event, though Fantasia Fair last year was quite different. Then again, it may be that there were many more transsexuals there. I don’t know.

In the course of the evening, I met a girl who dresses only once or twice a year, and another who dresses once a week on average and who had never before been out in public in the decades she’s been crossdressing.

I don’t know how common these stories are, though I suspect the second one is more usual than the first, but both require a substantially different mindset than mine.

I would never even begin to judge another girl, because I know how personal and sensitive this experience can be. Everyone’s story is unique, shaped by their own particular personality and circumstances. These girls just prove that point; very time I meet a group of girls, I hear a new story, and often some that I cannot have imagined.

But, I can’t help having questions. I still want to understand how she could stand putting all that effort into dressing, only to walk up and down the hall and then have to change back. Wouldn’t it be better just to give it up altogether? My curiosity aside, will she be able to go back to her previous situation now that she has been out?

Some girls develop a rich internet friend network which helps immensely with the social aspect of all this. It also helps people see others with common challenges. I think she has done this too.

As for the girl who dresses only once or twice a year, it s clearly a special-occasion type of activity. I wonder how often she thinks about it, or thinks like a girl or feels like a girl in between…

This was also a day for reacquaintances. I was especially happy to run into a friend from my Las Vegas trip and someone who I respect and think highly of. It was heartwarming to have her greet us so enthusiastically and affectionately. We picked up right where we left off in May… I hope to see her for dinner on Saturday and get to know her better.

The lowdown on the conference so far for me is this: the food is passable but overpriced – you can do better in the food court across the street, but the experience of sitting at a table with a different bunch of girls each day and making friends is priceless. The one course I attended was, frankly, a waste of my time; perhaps here are those who might benefit… I don’t know, but everything seemed a bit elementary and obvious to me.    

Southern Comfort Debutante

Well, the Coke thingie was just what I expected. Crass commercialism of the best kind – a product with a cult-like following. Best of all, a few nice photo ops.

When we returned to the hotel, we realized that we had better hustle to get into mingling mode if we wanted to enjoy any of the social aspect of this conference. So, a quick change, makeup touch-up and out we went.

When we arrived at the bar, I spied two girls I recognized from last year’s Fantasia Fair. So we went over and chatted them up, and ordered a couple of drinks. It was nice to see two old friends – a funny term for people we had met only for a few days last year, but such is the nature of friend-making at these events – and we talked for a while about the changes and developments since our first meeting.

Jen, who is now a woman full-time, was the one who first told me her little joke: what’s the difference between a crossdresser and a transsexual? 3 years. This she had told me at Fantasia about 10 minutes after we had first met, and right after I told her that I had just started and the one concern my girlfriend had was that she might lose the male part of me. My gf laughed nervously then, but so far there hasn’t been any truth to its message, at least in my life… on the other hand, Jen transitioned almost exactly on schedule according to her joke.

As I surveyed the room, I noticed another familiar face – this one I had seen only on my computer screen. Kimberly and I had exchanged a few messages online and reading her posts I knew her to be pretty, outgoing, funny, talented and well liked. So, I excused myself and went over and introduced myself.

These girls were so great!

(Left to right, Dita, me, Kimberly and Terree)

 

She was sitting at a table with two other girls, laughing and having a great time. They immediately welcomed me and invited me to take the fourth seat.

It sure felt good to sit down… during the day, I had walked just a little too far in my cute little booties, and had made the mistake of not wearing socks, so the last thing I wanted was to walk anywhere in heels that night. I hadn’t had dinner and expected to have to go out for some food, but sitting there with these great girls, laughing and talking, and being in Atlanta, Georgia, after all, I resolved to adopt the attitude of Gone With The Wind’s Scarlett, and decided, “I’ll think about that tomorrow.”

Dita is a tall girl with a German accent, a very girly sense of style, lovely eyes and an outgoing personality. She loves herself and is full of positive energy, which makes her all the more attractive. She has met so many people online – and turned a fair number into real-world friends – that I want to take a course from her on the subject. Who but Dita could manage to walk onto a plane, in her own inimitable way, smiling at the first-class passengers and later in the flight have a drink arrive courtesy of an admirer from up front?

Terree is such a friendly and sweet girl who makes everyone feel at ease. She was the first girl I met who has never been mesmerized by her own emerging feminine image enough to constantly be looking at herself or taking pictures. Maybe that’s a sign of maturity or self-confidence… I don’t know, but whatever it is, I don’t have it…

Turns out, this table was the center of the universe, so to speak. We just had to sit there and have fun, and others came by and visited. I managed to meet a fair number of other girls as a result, each and every one an appealing personality. I was even surprised by another Fantasia friend who passed by later in the evening, a tall South African beauty named Diane. I look forward to running into all of them during the course of the weekend and getting to know them better.

I cannot stress enough the amazing way these conferences create friendships. Diane and I had fifteen minutes of time together in Fantasia last year, yet each of us remembers the other and is pleased as punch to have the chance to reminisce and renew acquaintances year later. I’ve never had that experience in the “real world.”

Eventually, Kimberly and Terree went off to a suite party for a time, but amazingly, even without those two larger-than-life personalities, our table didn’t miss a beat! They were replaced by Kahlan, who turns out to be a friend of Dita’s, JoAnne, who is also member of the same site as Kimberly, Gina – a friendly, soft-spoken girl, Kelly, Ginger, Stephanie and on and on…

When they returned, Terree was a little miffed. Apparently she had a run-in with a humorless girl from Diva Las Vegas (is that redundant?). She and Kimberly recounted the episode, with Kimberly doing her impression of this unidentified sourpuss listening to this joke. I’m not sure who was funnier, but here’s the joke: what’s the difference between erotic and kinky? Erotic is with a feather; kinky is with a chicken!

I thought it was funny!

I stayed at that table for the rest of the night until 4am and even managed to get some decent food delivered right to me, so I didn’t even have to go hungry. “As God is my witness…”

Hello Sunshine!

News to Me

I have heard that Chicago is a dangerous city, only to find it to be one of the most friendly and hospitable places I have ever visited. I have heard that Washington DC is the murder capital of America, but found it to be beautiful and no scarier than any other place. And now, I heard something about the persistent rainfall threatening to submerge the city of Atlanta, but have arrived here today to a beautiful and sunny day, though admittedly a bit humid for my taste. I am told by the hotel front deskman that it was equally beautiful yesterday.

I don’t doubt all the facts reported in all the above cases are true, but it is also true that anyone who is unfortunate enough to be cooped up at home and forced to get her facts from the television has no clue about reality on the ground. News outlets are in the business of selling news, so reality which is usually unremarkable has to be ‘punched up’ a bit.

It is an unfortunate side-effect of improved access to information that our perceptions are so distorted. Parents afraid to let their kids walk anywhere alone, women scared of their own shadow on the streets, the elderly terrified of everything… and all the while our society has gotten statistically a great deal safer!

End of rant…

First Impressions

I haven’t seen anything quite like it… I arrived at the hotel this morning, and there were a bunch of people enjoying the patio – all t-girls. I entered the hotel lobby and, as I scanned the vast room, there were the usual clusters of people – at the café, at the business center, and the front desk, by the phones, getting on or off the elevators – most every one a t-girl.

This hotel is quite a ways outside the center of town and quite isolated. It is also massive and sits across the street from an even more enormous strip mall which, notwithstanding its apparent proximity, begs the use of a car or shuttle.

It is no accident that this hotel was chosen for the conference. Many of the girls I saw were clearly not going to pass as female in the real world, even if they optimized their make-up skills, and many of these are quite scared to venture out, but a bit suffocated at home.

Like everyone else, t-girls crave acceptance and interpersonal interaction, and wish to avoid conflict, rejection, harassment and danger. This hotel allows those who don’t feel comfortable in public to be their feminine selves, make friends, share experiences, concerns etc., all in a safe environment.

Next is lunch at the Flying Biscuit Café and then I’m off the visit the Coke Museum. See ya!

Atlant-is

Like the legendary Atlantis, the modern Georgian city of the ironically similar name finds itself largely under water these days.

No joke this predicament… several people have died and property losses are substantial. Schools were closed today as authorities tried to catch up to the problem, and a state of emergency was declared.

And, for a topper, rain is expected every day from now through the weekend.

Which begs the question: why on earth am I getting on a plane and flying right on in there?

Well, I called the hotel and they assure me everything’s ok despite CNN’s caterwauling. The Southern Conference Chairwoman likewise has soothing words for prospective attendees.

So, I’m still going. I hope they’re right!

Southern Comfort

I’ve done a cursory review of the events going on at this week’s transgender conference in Atlanta, known as Southern Comfort, and my first and most obvious conclusion is that I’ve got an awful lot of packing to do.

This is apparently the largest convention of its kind, with nearly a thousand attendees from all over the globe. There are seminars and vendors and planned activities, as well as a few nice parties planned.

Among other things, there’s a pool party, a karaoke party, a jaunt to a dance club, bowling, and a formal event.

And, there will be a heroes and heroines cocktail party and dinner… which is not just about dressing up as Wonder Woman (though there will be that, and it will be fun), but about honoring those people in our lives to whom we have looked up and from whom we have learned and taken strength.

The conference is housed entirely within the walls of one hotel, though there are outings to town. In this way, it is as safe an environment for the shyest among us – not having to interact with the public yet having the freedom to “go out.” I’ll bet that will be a great thrill for those who are scared to go out, and a perfect first step.

I’m hoping to meet some new people and make some new friends, as well as renew some acquaintances.

Well, it’s back to the closet and the suitcases for me… I’ll let you know how things are going from Atlanta, if I have time, otherwise, when I return.

Cathouse

As promised, here’s a gallery of pics taken at the Cathouse in the Luxor, Las Vegas.

Night of the Piranha

As I said in the previous post, the last of the major evening events for our Las Vegas week was a takeover of the entire VIP section of the Piranha Club.

The club surprised us by welcoming us with a huge poster. That was nice!

It was the full VIP experience, with three private rooms, lit in soft red light, bottle service and comfy couches. Those of us that wanted to dance went downstairs and gyrated to the pulses of “Club Music” which, I confess, sounds largely all the same to me. I danced a bit among the sweaty gay boys and some friends from the group, but for the most part enjoyed intimate conversation in the VIP room.

We stayed until the kicked us out at 4 am, and then a bunch of us went for breakfast.

It is somehow always the most unlikely moments that stand out and this breakfast tuned into the highlight of the trip for me. I got to know a few people who I hadn’t really had the chance to talk to where yelling wasn’t necessary. At 6 am, people tend to let their guard down some, and it was nice to see inside a bit. Then, two of the girls started wisecracking with the waitress and making jokes of pretty well everything. I sat there and laughed and laughed!

It was the best show in Vegas! And it was free.

The next day was our last, and it was kind of a winding down time. We had the afternoon by the pool again, and went to a club at night. In between, my girlfriend and I went for dinner to The Cathouse at the Luxor, and I couldn’t resist the temptation to get a few photos in the sumptuous décor. My next post will contain a gallery of those shots.

At the end of it all, we found ourselves in the suite with a bunch of our cherished friends – people we had met just a few days earlier who had become so special to us in such a short time! We exchanged heartfelt hugs and promises to keep in touch – we were all sorry to leave one another! We had spent a week free of the burden of the hiding and conflicts that go along with being t-girls, with others who understood and shared our experiences. And these girls were friendly and interesting and enthusiastic and supportive and caring and fun! We miss you already!

You’re Fabulous but I Can’t Help Forgetting You

The last of the major evening events for our Las Vegas week was a takeover of the entire VIP section of the Piranha Club. But first, there was the matter of dinner. And what better place for a group dinner for a collection of out-there t-girls than Liberace’s?

I knew where we were going, but not exactly when!

I had arranged with one of the girls who runs this thing for her to call me with the details when they were finalized. Despite what I know to be her best efforts and intentions, she forgot. It was therefore up to me to guess what had happened to them on Friday evening, and find my own way over to the restaurant, luckily before they had finished their meals.

I have to relate (sorry, babe!) that despite profuse apologies on her part, the following night I was left for two hours wondering where they had gone, before my phone finally rang with more apologies, literally moments before I was going to call it a night and go to bed. (Y’know, a girl could develop a complex about such things!) Truth be told, she did try to reach me earlier, but there was a snafu with the number. Anyhow, it’s impossible to be angry with her for long considering her genuine efforts, amazing concern for everyone, overwhelming amount of distractions and not least, her immense likeability.

I learned a lesson from those two nights, not to allow that sort of thing to throw me for a loop, to operate on the assumption it is not a personal slight, and to accept from people as much as they are willing and happy to give. I had a very nice time both nights, as it turned out.

Back to Friday night. I arrived at the restaurant wearing this really hot red leather pencil skirt, with 50 cents in my hand. After quickly interacting with the service staff and placing an order, I walked over to her, sitting at her table with an “Oops! I screwed up!” look on her face. She said, guiltily “I’m so sorry, Janie!” The waiter placed a plate of food in front of her. “Y’know, I’m not gonna eat my main course until you get your food.” She’s so sweet that I’m sure she really meant it!

“Don’t be silly,” I said. “It’ll be ruined.” I paused. “By the way, I got you a present.”

She looked at me a bit confused, probably wondering whether I had lost my mind. Also, she is not inclined to accept gifts from the girls, all of whom are appreciative of her efforts. She’s a rare breed whose happiness comes from the good she does for others.

I put the 50 cents on the table and said, “Here’s your present. Y’know that coupon you insisted on giving me yesterday, doll? This is the change from that coupon… I bought this fabulous skirt with the rest!” I twirled around. “Isn’t it great?”

“Now that’s a present I’ll accept,” she said, clearly relieved, and happy to have made me happy. “You look fabulous!”

I left her to her dinner, and found a seat. By the time my food came and I started eating, I looked around and she had left along with most of the other girls. I didn’t need her to spoil her own dinner, but coming over afterwards to hang out with me as I ate would have been a nice gesture. But, by then she was on to something else…

It’s nothing personal. She is what she is, and what she is is pretty special. Besides, there were so many distractions and other egos to soothe. I’m happy to know her! Her generosity, outgoing nature, positive attitude, energy and larger-than-life persona are something to behold! Love-ya, babe! You are great!

Now, if I can only find her, we’ll be off to the Piranha Club!

Fetish Night – Power Exchange

After a lovely day at the pool and a few hours in between, we arrived at the suite for the start of Fetish Night.

Ca…..thump!!!

The place was dead! We weren’t as late as usual, but there were about 20 people there and no noise, no buzz… dead!

I was a little surprised and disappointed, since I expected this night to be kinky and fun, and for some reason the energy had gone. But, maybe people were just readjusting from relaxation mode into kinky night-mode. The party gathered steam as the minutes passed and more people arrived, and we were just about ready to mosey off to Power Exchange.

But first, pictures had to be taken and outfits had to be discussed. Have a look at a few:

My sweetie and I got a bit of a primer of domination and submission etiquette and rules from some of the enthusiasts. Apparently, we both should not have come wearing collars, which apparently indicate that we are someone’s sub. This faux-pas was obviously forgiven, and we were so taken with our lovely collars that we dared not remove either one.

After a few episodes of playful flogging, verbal domination and so on, we were out the door. Most of the girls went in cabs or a limousine, but we took our car. The place was not easy to find, even with directions, but evidently we did better than the limo driver, who ought to have known better.

Power Exchange had quite a reputation in San Francisco, where it used to be. I couldn’t bring myself to go there after some of the stories I’d heard. In Las Vegas, they have a new life, though there have been some news stories questioning how they manage to circumvent the laws that would seem to prevent them from operating. But that’s another story.

The place is trans friendly to the point of letting us in for free. There are themed rooms on two – or was it three – levels, and a couple of balconies to get some air. They had a stripper pole to try out, and a 50s-themed bar room, lit entirely in red with a charming Irish gal behind the counter, who we learned had appeared in Trantasia as well as many Las Vegas clubs in her performing past.

One of the gals brought along a vacuum bag for sensory deprivation. A person climbs in, gets zipped up, with only a tube in their mouth poking through for air, and then the bag is suctioned out of all its air. Once the person is vacuum-sealed, people on the outside play with them. I confess to wondering what it might be like, but I never got the chance to get inside.

My one big coup for the night is the picture you see below on the right. My friend G wore a Madonna “Like-a-Virgin” Wedding Dress and it lit up beautifully in the black light. I had to get a shot, but pics aren’t supposed to be taken, so I really had to hide the camera as I took this shot. I only got one shot at it, but it came out beautifully! We both were so happy!

Other than that, and my go at the stripper pole, the entire experience was a bit lame. After a little while, most of the group ended up on one of the balconies sitting and talking, so we took the opportunity to get out of there and get some sleep.

Except that I was hungry, so we had to stop at the Hard Rock Café for some grub…

And then back to the room, to bed.

Lingerie Party Night

Starting with Wednesday, the mornings were lost due to the fact that bedtime became ever closer to dawn with each passing night.

We did some shopping, especially at the mall at the Planet Hollywood (formerly the Alladin). There’s a Bettie Page story there, with 1940s inspired fashions, and I had to try almost everything on! What fabulous styles. If I were made of money, I’d have bought out the whole store! I am developing a serious shop-a-holic problem… I did buy the beautiful pink dress, and now I’m on the lookout for pink shoes…

We finally made it to a buffet – the Spice Market Buffet – a relic of the Alladin, and it wasn’t cheap but they had tons of yummy food which covered us for both breakfast and lunch.

The evening’s event was a lingerie party with a potential outing later on (meaning mid-morning) to a bar. Well, it almost goes without saying that a Jacuzzi suite with mirrored ceiling, an open bar and a bunch of raunchy camera-loving t-girls would turn into a fun party… It certainly was! The idea of going out was dropped by unanimous consent around 2 a.m., and the party rocked on…

There was posing and flirting and both real and simulated naughtiness, there was drinking and kissing, and oh, yes, live online camming. I guess I can confess that I had my very first online t-girl-t-girl kiss that night! Thanks T!

While I’m confessing, I can also say that I had what I consider to be my first special t-girl kiss the previous day. I’m not sure whether to call it a “romantic” kiss (cuz that’s probably overstating things), so let’s say a “movie kiss.” Picture a scene where two pretty girls are talking seriously, and then there’s a short pause in the conversation when, completely out of the blue, one girl leans in and plants a sweet kiss on the other’s lips, and then turns on her heel and walks away leaving the other to wonder what just happened.

So, guys, are ya ready for some photographic evidence from the lingerie party? I thought so!

Finding my WildSide

I have been back from Las Vegas for two weeks now, and somehow haven’t managed a report on the fabulous week I spent there.

I didn’t really know what to expect when I finally met up with these Wildside gals. The main reason I chose this group is that they seemed a lot more fun and raunchy than the others. As much as I desired to let my hair down and have a good time – rather than just a nice, proper and evolved time – I worried that I might be too tame for this crowd. How wild and crazy were they? How far would they go? How far would I go? There is only so much you can tell from online interaction, right?

We normally travel light, so the avalanche of suitcases that tumbled out of the car was quite a handful to manage, but ol’ Janie didn’t want to be missing anything. It didn’t help that I found several “just perfect” things in every single vintage store we went to, at throwaway prices! OMG, I just had to buy them.

I was already getting nervous about the evening, when we would finally meet the organizers of this event along with another friend. As I got dressed, my fingers were dry and cold and I had trouble with the clips and buttons and, well… everything. Conversation was a bit strained. Doing my makeup, I must have dropped everything I picked up at least once, sometimes twice. And, of course, my hair would just not behave. “I cannot be late!” I said to myself.

Since the show was at the Mirage, having dinner at the casino’s California Pizza Kitchen seemed the most convenient, and with my nerves, this was more important than food quality. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to eat much anyway. After parking the car, it occurred to me that I was really now going out for the first time as a girl in Las Vegas. Of course, I’d done it elsewhere, but every new place can be different. I walked alone in the parking garage to the elevators and down to the entrance. Going through the casino’s doors, I headed… straight for the ladies’ room.

You’d think that was a refuge, but instead it was just another challenge, especially with butterflies in my stomach and actually being cold from nerves. [I am so not comfortable meeting new people!] Anyhow, with the DivaLV caveats about using the women’s washroom ringing in my head, I just hoped no one would bother me as I went in to check my mischievous hair, and sure enough it was misbehaving. More fussing, more hairspray. “Geez,” I thought, “I hope it’ll hold in place now!”

“Dammit, I gotta eat something or I’m gonna faint!”

My GF was waiting at the restaurant with the show tickets in hand. Sitting and eating, and realizing that there was lots of time before the show, I relaxed a little bit. But I didn’t finish half my food. I wandered the casino nervously, looking for the theater, contemplating running into my new friends or how we would make our entrance with them already sitting there. Turns out, the seats in front of us were still vacant when we arrived so we took our places and waited for them to show up.

When they got there, it was like a meeting of old friends. Hugs were exchanged, smiles all around. They were familiar faces, brought to life, and it was clear that their online personas were honest and true. They were in person just as they had been online.

The show was great. Cirque de Soleil’s LOVE was a delirious explosion of color and texture and acrobatics and fabulous music. I could see our new friends in front of us enjoying the show like kids in a candy store.

After the show, we decamped to the Revolution Bar – Beatles themed. As we entered – and I’m dating myself here – I realized that the theme extended to décor only. I had the usual disappointment of hearing the same house, hip-hop, groove, trance, techno stuff (whatever it’s called) wherever I go, no matter the “theme.” We had a few drinks and talked and started in quickly on our obsession with taking pictures and being photographed.

It was a pretty tame evening at that. I’d have followed if they’d have gotten up to dance, but I couldn’t find the energy to lead. No matter, many others were arriving the next day and the party could really get underway!

Mile High Club

Well, I finally did it! I flew on a plane! I put on my pink mini-skirt and respectable heels and a t-shirt and went to the airport. I figured, if I was going to fly as a girl, I might as well look unmistakably as one, so I ditched my original plan to wear my jeans, sexy as they are, and went with the skirt.

Well, it was a complete non-event. I don’t know how many people can tell what I am just by looking at me, but the security people had my passport after all, and nevertheless, it was business as usual.

When we got off the plane, I rented a car and again nothing… not the slightest bit fazed by my driver’s license, not the slightest look of surprise or interest. I was looking carefully for any even slight sign.

Goll’ darn gone ‘n’ done it! (Shania Twain fans will know that line.) Yay!

Now, with my sexy convertible and my luggage in the trunk, we’re going straight to the mall to do some more shopping!

Babycakes and Hash

Last time I said I might consider coming back to stay for a while in San Diego, and breakfast at Hash House a Go-Go followed later by pink cupcakes and espresso at Babycakes has done nothing but reinforce my conviction.

Mama Mia! I have never seen a plate as big as the one upon which my breakfast was served! And the plate was full, with a tree growing out of it! Pictured, you see two eggs over easy, a sage-fried chicken breast on bacon-mashed potatoes with maple syrup reduction, served with a country biscuit, a thick slice of watermelon and tomato slices. Seeing as I am on a diet, I didn’t finish it ;)

Over at Babycakes, I get to type all this stuff in with a free wireless connection, and keep my waist growing with a pink pomegranate cupcake and a triple cappuccino.

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention that we went to the Cinco de Mayo celebration in Old Town, had a very nice meal in a fancy Mexican restaurant and then enjoyed the music in the main square, where there was a live band, some dancing and mucho drinking.

I consider myself a margarita aficionado, but I hate to say that the best margarita we have had in San Diego was at Fred’s – a decidedly inauthentic Mexican restaurant. We asked them to make us a special margarita with some excellent tequila on their menu, but it was one of the worst margaritas I have ever had. Then I ordered one of their standard ones and it blew me away! A girl can be too smart for her own good sometimes.

There is a Zydeco Festival happening in town this weekend, and I’d like to get to that so we’ll see how that goes. See ya!

The Beach Towns

Duuuuuuude!!!!

I went out to the beach town of Ocean Beach to see the beach and eat at Hodad’s.

It is incredibly cold for a 75 degree day on these coastal towns, and a fair-skinned lass like myself can find herself burned to a crispy red without ever feeling much heat! So, I took the precaution of slabbering sunscreen everywhere. I have noticed the dry, aged weathered skin of so many Southern Californians that is due to the unending supply of irresistibly beautiful sunny days and that has scared me into using sunscreen – which I rarely do.

Ocean Beach is a nice sun-kissed beach town and comes with an extensive collection of California stereotypes. Being from Canada, I thought these were exaggerations, but the granola types, the surfer dudes, the old guy in the bicycle-racing suit, the peaceniks, the gray-haired surfer in a wetsuit, the beautiful men wandering the sidewalks and beach, the group of teen girls piled into a VW Beetle, the blonde lady whose hair looked like clumped nautical rope – they’re all here!

Hodad’s was everything it was made out to be on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.” Fabulous burgers, friendly attitude, neat ambience. And a chocolate malt that was so thick you had to use a spoon. Heartily recommended.

After OB, we also went to PB and La Jolla. (Californians are so laid back that they cannot muster the effort to say whole words, it seems. So Pacific Beach becomes PB, and avocado becomes AVO.) There were nice cafes, each town had its own personality and the vintage clothes shopping was bountiful. I got myself a hot leather skirt for 20 bucks, and a couple of beautiful sundresses for half that much and a clubbing dress for even less.

We had lunch at the Green Flash at Pacific Beach yesterday, where we were served by a cute waitress whom I can only describe as eerily evocative of Jodie Foster. The salads were yummy and we got to eat outside in the mildly warm Caifornia beach air. What could be better?

La Jolla reminded me a bit of Monte Carlo, especially since they promote themselves that way, but it’s not really anything like the real thing. I did witness an incredibly self-important rich blonde woman and her superior attitude with a hotel doorman and valet. But I don’t think that counts.

I think I liked Pacific Beach the best, because it seemed to me like the most down-to-earth town with easy access to the beach. I didn’t spend long enough anywhere to know for sure, but that was my gut feeling.

But the most important thing to me personally about all these places and all the people I have encountered in the San Diego area is that they don’t have a problem with Janie. I have never been anywhere where I have felt as much at ease walking around just being my girly self. And that includes San Francisco. I may very well start thinking about hanging out here a lot more in the future.

First Taste of San Diego

Ooohh, so many possibilities here in San Diego. I’ve just arrived for my very first visit here and it’s Cinco de Mayo!

I’m at Starbucks reading a few tourist magazines, plotting my next move.

Obviously there are parties to go to, but do I go shopping in the malls, sunning on the beaches, play tourist at Legoland, or visit the many 1950s nostalgic diners around town?

I’m going to start with Carlsbad. I’m off to the train station…

San Francisco Pit Stop

Hey, all!

I am starting my long journey that will take me to Las Vegas, and my first quick stop is San Francisco. I have a few hours between flights, so I zipped into the city for a few hours rather than cool my jets at the airport.

I picked the Mission District cuz I do love Mexican food and there’s lots of good, cheap and reasonably quick, but freshly prepared food to be had in this area of town.

Also, within a stone’s throw is Philz Coffee, a place that not only has wifi, not only has a comfy and inviting area in which to hang or work, but also has Tantalizing Turkish Coffee! Their Turkish coffee is my weakness – a very dark roast infused with cardamom. Mmmmmnnnhh… Yummy!

They make coffee here differently from anywhere else I’ve been. Each cup of drip coffee is made to order and presweetened and pre-creamed (with their own particular kind of cream or milk) by friendly and helpful staff. These methods and ingredients, coupled with the warm reception and ambience makes for a very nice break indeed and a cup of joe that you cannot reproduce at home.

That’s it for now! Direct from Philz in the Mission District in rainy cold and wet San Francisco, this is Janie, signing off…

Viva Las Vegas, Baby!

Ahhh! Mid-May is round the corner… the time when the sun is shining, the first blooms are sprouting in the Great White North… and trannies descend on Las Vegas! (I first wrote about this in Viva Las Difference!)

For a decade or so, a group calling itself Diva Las Vegas (www.geekbabe.com/dlv) has been organizing a trip to Las Vegas unlike any other crossdresser/transvestite convention. There is no official hotel, no conferences, no presenters, no meals included. In fact, registration is free. They take care of dreaming up many things you can do, and you can do and pay for whatever you want. It’s basically like going to Las Vegas on your own, but there just happens to be a large group of TGs doing stuff that you can join and they’re happy to have you.

I am preparing to go to Las Vegas during Diva week, though I haven’t yet decided whether I’ll sign up with them. In fact, I doubt I will.

One message that comes through quite clearly from reading their information is their obsession with decorum. It is more important to them than anything else that those that attend DLV dress conservatively and don’t make any trouble. Don’t draw attention to yourself, and don’t argue with anyone, even if they’re wrong.

Now, I’m no wild party animal, and I tend not to go out looking for trouble, so I understand where they are coming from. But, I haven’t lost the inclination to let loose from time to time and I love hanging out with people who live life ecstatically. A vacation in Las Vegas with a bunch of girlfriends seems like the perfect time and place to shake things up!

So, the attitude of these Divas seems a bit out of place and overdone, at least to me. Critically, it will have the effect – likely intended – of discouraging the fun, exuberant people from attending. Do I have any interest in spending a week with a group that has defined itself primarily as conservative, responsible, reasonable, even timid? It’ll be like going with my parents and not being allowed to bring along any of my fun friends.

A group of t-girls went through a very similar thought process about two years ago. They went to Diva Las Vegas and quickly started to bridle at the restrictions. They soon became the “bad girls” of the group, organizing parties and having a grand ol’ time.

Rather than make a photo album and reminisce about that great experience, they took it upon themselves to organize a trip for the following year for as many like-minded t-girls as wanted to go. In my opinion, this was a tremendous act of charity and community.

Two years on and the 3rd Annual Viva Wildside is about to happen. The girls who have gone in the past seem to be fast friends and the atmosphere is all about acceptance and fun. The organizers of Wildside have facilitated friendships and experiences and created a home for a t-girl demographic that was outside the focus of any other convention of which I am aware. I am so excited to be a part of this for the first time!

If you’re interested in more info, go to http://wildsidewest.forumotion.com/ .

I gotta start packing!

Viva Las Difference

While planning a trip to Las Vegas for the spring, I found that two interesting groups of t-girls are going at the same time. What is most interesting is how different these two groups are.

The first of these groups has activities like golf and skeet-shooting, while the other has little planned for the daytime, instead preferring to concentrate on planning for pretty wild nights.

The first spends an agonizing amount of internet real estate on the do’s and don’ts of how to dress “appropriately” (which seems to me a bit misplaced in a city like Las Vegas, which surely has, at any given time, the largest proportion of inappropriately dressed individuals in the country). The latter seems to revel in turning heads.

The first asserts that their vacation is not sexual in nature, “Never has been, never will be.” I would have to confess to sharing the sentiment of members of the latter group who might be wondering why the organizers of the first group think that’s something to crow about.

Oh well, vive la difference!

Dinner with Obama

My girfriend and I had been looking forward to our visit to Topolobampo in Chicago for dinner this weekend but were surprised to be greeted at the door by armed guards insisting on inspecting the contents of our bags and scanning us for weapons. As we entered the dining room, there was another large man with a communications device in his ear, looking plenty serious. In the back corner was the President-elect, Barack Obama, together with his wife and some others dining on the finest Mexican food the U.S. has to offer.

Despite sharing the room with the imminent leader of the free world, our thoughts quickly turned to our own personal concerns. As we sat by the window fronting onto the street, we could not help but think that whatever danger he might be in, we were in much greater peril. After all, he was ensconced in a protected corner with people and firepower everywhere while we were unarmed and out front. We were cannon-fodder in the case of any potential trouble. But considering that any perceived danger was likely to be entirely a product of our (and the Secret Service’s) imagination (and of course – and thankfully – it turned out to be exactly that) the more serious problem was that the entire service staff was distracted by his presence, resulting in a poorer dining experience for us.

I’m sorry if that sounds selfish, and I don’t mean to belittle the very important concerns for the safety of such an important person. Also, I don’t begrudge the man his nights out, nor the waitstaff‘s giddiness at being able to spend some time with him and even to care more about him. But notwithstanding the privilege of being in his presence and the ability to crow about it here and elsewhere, I was there for the food and the service after all.

Our waitress was a friendly and professional server, but it was her assistants who brought us every course and were therefore charged with explaining the intricate mastery that went into each. This was a tall order for these shy quiet Mexicans whose heavily accented voices were soft and impossible to understand amid the cacophony of the room and whose vocabulary was not up to the task.

Additionally, though we were a table of only two, every course of the tasting menus were brought and served to the wrong person until the waitress showed up to put down cutlery for the last course and found out that she was giving the special fish knife to the wrong person. “Has it been like this from the start?” she asked and we nodded in response. “I’ll fix it. Sorry.” Great, thanks.

The main course was followed by a sweet Mexican coffee redolent with the aromas of cinnamon and cloves. Unfortunately, the assistant server who brought the coffee in the French press coffeemaker forgot to put a filter in the press, providing us with a very flavorful, if somewhat grainy, cup.

The food was expertly conceived, perfectly cooked and sauced, but frankly struck me as just so much culinary masturbation, in marked contrast to the orgasmic experience we had not too long ago when we ate at the more casual sister restaurant next door, Frontera Grill. There we had an absolutely and overwhelmingly fantastic meal; great and friendly service, bright lights and uplifting decor, perfect drinks, and at half the price! On the other hand, Topolobampo is not for me. It is a touch stuffy, the food may be more complex and adventurous but it isn’t as good. For those on the bleeding edge with more sophisticated tastes and more money to spend than I have, go for it; for those who want a great meal, Frontera’s your huckleberry!

Or, you could try Salpicon. My understanding is that this restaurant was founded by a former employee of Topolobampo more than a decade ago – and it was around that time that I first visited for brunch. Since then, I have always returned to order the very same meal which remains on the menu to this day (Huevos Motuleños-sunny-side eggs served on a tostada with black beans and surrounded by a spicy tomato-habanero sauce; garnished with peas, smoked ham and plantains). We went again this year – the morning after Topolobampo – and for the first time I tried something new, but was not disappointed in the least. FYI, it was Arrachera con Huevos (charcoal-grilled, marinated skirt steak served with two eggs, any style, with a spicy salsa borracha and black beans).

The happy room and the friendly, funny, accommodating service brightened up a very dreary cold, dark and rainy day. The fabulous margaritas didn’t hurt either. These were the ones way back that set the standard for us for margaritas – a standard that most every other place fails to meet. Olé!

salpicon

Feel the Woman on the Inside (and Outside)

This morning I went to a seminar on how to make your voice more feminine. Not surprisingly, the upshot was that if you move like a woman, gesture like a woman, intonate like a woman and so on, the pitch of your voice – unless you have a deep bass Johnny Cash-type voice – is not that big an impediment to passing as female.

girly-thoughts-on-the-bed-1For the most part, if you have been, as I have been, a long-time, enthusiastic and devoted observer of women, and if your motivation for all this is, as mine is, to assimilate that which you love about women, then a lot of this should come naturally, and the main challenge is to concentrate on not forgetting yourself and reverting to your masculine tendencies when you are not in the moment. My theory is that it is always going to work better if you can feel the woman in you and simply manifest that. I don’t think I would be doing this at all if I couldn’t feel that femininity, being then forced into rote practice and memorization to be able to behave like a woman. For me there would be no point.

This reminds me of an observation I made at the recent Fantasia Fair Fashion Show rehearsals, where I noticed how interesting it was to watch how men learn things differently from women – in this case, how to walk. My good fortune is that I have already learned this lesson, and so I was more of an observer than anything else. As a guide, our instructor suggested that we stand one floorboard apart and then walk, keeping our feet no closer or further apart than about that much. Everyone got a turn to try it in front of the class.

One by one, each model would come up, look down, measure things out exactly and strive to do it perfectly, exactly as instructed. The problem was that they were stiff and they were staring at the floor. As men, we want a formula to follow, and that’s why we dance like robots too. Women do things more fluidly and are so much less afraid to do it wrong and learn as they go. The men did great, but the stress on the poor guys’ faces was adorable!

The man part of me knows the feeling only too well, as he has tried, on several occasions, to learn how to dance. I find that I am a much better dancer than my male side ever was and it is because I dance to feel my sexy body move with the music rather than to score with women. And, while the sensual slower beats of certain music used to be a good reason for the guy I was to sit down, as a girl I take the opportunity to slither and wiggle and groove on the dance floor and run my hands up and down my smooth sensuous hips and thighs as the high heels help me undulate my pelvis. ‘Nuff said ;).

Fair Comment

The Photographeress
One of my goals in coming to Provincetown was to find out what kind of people were doing what I was doing. You read stories online, you look at pictures and you wonder what kind of weirdo man-in-a-dress you may be becoming. So, I wanted to see what they were really like and what my reaction to them would be.
While the way some of the guys look is certainly different than what I see every day, this is as wonderful a bunch of people as I have had the pleasure of meeting. Throughout the Fair, everyone without exception was Continue reading

So This Blonde Walks Into a Bar

I apologize for being a few days behind, but once posted everything is out of date anyways. So, this comes from Sunday October 26.

I shaved my legs last night, even though the hair was barely noticeable. It was, after all, Gala Night, and pictures would be taken. It still thrills me the sensual feeling of bare smooth skin as one leg brushes against the other as I move Continue reading

Follies and Fetish at Fantasia

Last Friday night was the Follies show followed by a fetish party. For a bunch of amateurs, we put on a pretty impressive Vegas-style show to a packed room of participants and locals and tourists. By “we” I mean the Fantasia Fair participants; I was not in the show, though I hope to be next year. Think of it… unlike most people who’d like to try performing, we have a venue. All we have to do is practice and create a good act, and we have a stage to do it on and an audience to do it for! Continue reading

How Long Can You Go Without (Being) A Man?

By the 5th day there has been some attrition. A couple of my new friends have left and one had to abandon his female self for the rest of the week for the sake of the sanity of his partner. There has been some heavy drinking happening, and I don’t really know how much of it is just in good fun and how much is a symptom of problems.

Bathroom Politics


For my part, I have been unable to sleep for more than 6 hours in any one night and so I am physically and emotionally pooped. I went out today as completely androgynous as possible, dropping any semblance of effort to appear as the fabulous woman that I am. I’m not used to being a girl for this long without interruption and that pesky guy in me wants to come up for air. My girlfriend misses him a bit too. But if for some reason I have momentarily forgotten, when I crawl out of bed and look at myself in the mirror and brush away my tousled hair from my eyes with my hand and I notice those beautiful deep purple nails, it hits me again that Janie’s still here and I love her.

Truly, I am having such fun being a girl! Just the way I walk transforms me into a female state, Continue reading

Provincetown’s Fantastic but Frikkin’ Freezin’ Fantasia Fair

What a miserable day it was!  Cold, raining, strong blowing winds off the ocean…  In a place where walking is the preferred mode of transportation, every outing required reconsideration. Is it worth it? 

Well, we only have a week in this fantasyland, so better make the best of it.  This is also the day when a bunch of new people arrive for the second half. 

 
In the spirit of my determination to participate, I decided to be in the fashion show given by the Fair every year to raise money for a local charity.  The weather kept many people away, but we did alright.  Liz and Robyn do such a nice job making all the girls feel like they are beautiful divas and giving us the training and preparation to do the show.  Of course, then, when they have you onstage with nowhere to run, Continue reading

Provincetown’s Fantastic Fantasia Fair – Day 2

I am sitting here in the Purple Feather Coffee Shop writing my thoughts and every time I look up I see one or two crossdressers on the sidewalk outside the storefront windows. From time to time one of them comes in here and orders a coffee. For a crossdresser, it is such a different feeling to be hanging out in a place where you are just another person; it is understood that your lifestyle is completely off the charts everywhere else. I have been in progressive San Francisco Continue reading

Provincetown’s Fantastic Fantasia Fair – Day 1

 It is only 24 hours into Fantasia Fair in Provincetown, MA (Cape Cod) and I find myself walking down the main thoroughfare of this quaint village exchanging smiles with strangers and waving or stopping for a quick chat with every tenth person I pass as if we are old friends. No, I’m not running for office, nor am I a long-time resident of this place – in fact I have never been here before last night, but I feel like I have the key to the town.

This is Friend-making for Dummies. Continue reading

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