After Jack leaves at 9:00 am I will get dressed in my flamboyant attire to ride my bike to the parade with Betty. I’m wearing an orange shirt with a green plaid shirt over it, purple tights, rainbow socks, and neon pink shoes. I get to her house in Ocean Beach at 9:30 am. We take the bike path to Mission Hills where we will walk our bikes up some steep streets. We arrive in Hillcrest at 10:00 am and the sidewalks are packed with onlookers.
The parade starts at 11:00 am and we want to try to find space for us and our bikes to watch. I hadn’t eaten breakfast yet, so I stop into a smoothie place and order something with a banana in it. That in hand, I get back on my bike with my camera around my neck and my purse on my back to go further down the street. There are lots of people, but all seem to be walking up and down the road and Betty is having no troubles navigating the crowd…but I did.
Riding along and all of a sudden….Bam! This large-built man (muscular and tall) walks into me and tackles me to the ground. I am on the concrete covered in banana with broken sunglasses, a dented polarizer on my camera, and a bruised calf. Security from the bar I’m in front of brings me a towel. I try to gather myself as I dab at the sticky spots and worry about my camera most. I will miss the motorcycles and military part of the procession.
Betty comes back through the crowd. She has found a spot where we can lock our bikes and stand near the tape keeping the crowds back. Some people are wearing only underwear and others full robes and feathers. There are churches, banks, police, restaurants, and more out supporting the human race. And if the day wasn’t eventful enough – I got to watch a proposal and I wasn’t the only one crying – so romantic!
Also attending were government officials for support and equal rights, Amanda Lepore – a famous model and artist, and a variety of gay organizations and cultural groups. Passed out to the crowd were beads, condoms, cards, candy, fans, and bracelets. At 2:00 pm the parade is coming to a finish and we decide to find a place for lunch. We walk into a rainbow decorated bar halfway from the crowds at 2:30 pm and the wait is still too long.
We ride our bikes to Tiger! Tiger! Tavern in North Park and at 3:00 pm are enjoying our cold beers. I wanted the donuts & beer menu option, but that’s only available during Sunday brunch. We choose OB Noodle House for dinner hoping all the crowds will be out and about and away from there. We run by the house and upon our return there is already a wait, but for us it will only be ten minutes – we aren’t VIP, but we are here before the rush. We order a beer, spring roll, and veggie pho each for $13. Then I go home at 7:15 pm.
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