Thursday, June 16, 2011

June 16, 2011 - Transgender Day of Celebration - Camping in New Brunswick

Yikes, has it really been 9 days since I last posted? It has really been a crazy couple of weeks. I have never been so busy in my entire life. but I am managing to hang in there health-wise, and I am thoroughly enjoying the work.
first of all, it was an amazing weekend in New Brunswick. The first ever Transgender Day of Celebration Camping weekend was a huge success. I flew into Halifax from Newfoundland on Saturday morning, rented a van, picked up 5 people, and drove to New Brunswick. there, we met the host, my amazing friend Josie, and several other attendees. We drove into the woods, unloaded our gear, set up tents, and had an amazing time. while a total of 12 people camped over night, we had an additional 6 people attend the day's event, so a total crowd of 18.
We had a lovely time exchanging stories of struggles and success, both inside and outside of our transition. we had a great time laughing and joking around and poking fun at each other too! It was also time to symbolically let go of health trends to celebrate. After Josie broke her 2 year vegetarianism by having a symbolic hamburger, I decided to break my 12.5 year dry spell, and I cracked open a beer! (I will now attempt to become the first transsexual in world history to have quit drinking for 12.5 years, twice!
As the evening set in, we got the campfire lit, and hours and hours of more stories were told, and friendships developed. I ended up rooming in a tent with my lovely new friend Trina, a transwoman from Halifax. we hit it off and had a great time telling jokes and filming episodes for my youtube channel.
One of the highlights was a video we filmed in Josie's yet-to-be finished out house. The toilet and foundation were there, but no walls or door in place, so we took the opportunity to use humour to send a strong message about the serious issue of transpeople being falsely perceived as bathroom predators.
The key highlight for me was seeing my dear friend Josie enjoying the event in her environment. Josie is as girly as they get, yet at the same time, she loves her outdoors - her tractor, her chainsaw, her pick up truck!. Josie worked so hard to make this event happen and I know everyone in attendance were highly appreciative of her efforts to put this thing together.
The night was very cold, and after 3 hours in the tent, I decided to go warm up in the van! I ended up falling asleep in the van for another hour, giving me a total of 4 hours sleep - 4 more than I anticipated I would get! the sun rose around 5.30 am, and myself, Josie, and Aimee were awake and ready to go. Josie got the camp fire burning again - and made campfire coffee, while Aimee took the lead on creating BBQ pancakes! Eventually, after many team pictures, we packed up and all headed home.
The long drive back into Halifax to return my 5 friends was tiring, but it was extra special for me to be able to play a small part in making the event what it was, by providing transportation to others who may not have otherwise been able to attend. I made some great new friendships, and further developed fairly new existing friendships. the trans community in Canada is so small and so spread out. to get transpeople from 3 of the 4 Atlantic provinces together, made for an amazing atmosphere. I totally did not want to come home.
Anyway, a big thanks to Josie, Trina and Aimee for making this such an amazing weekend. I love you all and can't wait to see you all again.
Well, this was initially going to be a blog about the past 9 days, but it is already long enough, so I think I will cut it off and write another one to talk about the many other things that I have on the go.

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