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It was a windy morning at 7.30 on a Saturday in mid July that myself and Brandy, the TL make up artist , rocked up at Warrior Gardens in Southend to assemble the Transliving magazine gazebo and stand at Southend Pride. There was a good deal of interest all day and we took every photo opportunity we could, including when the mayor came and saw us.
The setup goes well, all up and ready to go with time to spare. Now the nerves are starting to kick in, and the gates open, oh crap, I'm actually going to have to speak to people I've never met before. As my friends know, this is totally out of my comfort zone (and I really mean totally), new people! Talk? Panic…. But as I force myself to approach people and talk about what I know best, my journey, and how Transliving has helped me, it gets easier. I also began to realise a lot of the people I'm talking to are more nervous than I am. Confidence is growing by the minute I tell anyone who will listen about all the great things Transliving has to offer and giving out goodie bags.
I donned my custom-made trans-colour dress/outfit and attended The Rainbow Fayre; at the event, people were lovely and complimentary, wanting to say 'Hi' and have photos taken with me. My travel to and from the event was more interesting as local people were happy to see me, again complimentary, cheering and waving as I walked.
At the tender age of 63, I attended my first Pride event last month. Transliving International were taking part with a stall for the day and required a few unsuspecting girls to help out with advice, leaflet distribution and, more importantly, the erection of the Transliving gazebo which had only recently been recovered from the Black Country. Courtsey of Transliving resident photographer, Richard, I found myself one of the unsuspecting crash test dummies who volunteered to help and I’m very glad I did. The forecast was clear and on our trip over to the heart of Essex it was obvious that it was going to be a very hot day.
We wondered around the many stalls spread across the meadow, split into different sections. Something I had never seen before were the latex ponies at pets corner, it must have been so hot inside those suits, when I asked, all I got was a “neigh”. We picked up a few leaflets and stickers as we strolled about. Playfully blowing rainbow bubbles I was given at one stall, a lovely lady stopped to share in my juvenile joy!