Is if a party the night before and getting mixed up in Chinese New Year celebrations weren't enough on the noise count, we gluttons for punishment went off in the afternoon to the Gay Pride March, held along Fitzroy Street St Kilda, with celebrations later in the Catani Gardens.
A friend who we were going to meet up with arrived at Fitzroy Street at 3.30 and called to find out where we were. The march started at 5.00 and that was the time we intended to be there. He sulked and went home, seeming to blame us for his error.
We decided to stay only for the parade and to cheer Sister, Bone Doctor and Little Jo as they marched with the Rainbow Families group. We saw them briefly before the march and almost missed them in the march. They too headed off home as soon as the parade finished.
What is it about Police Chief Commissioner Christine Nixon? I have never heard anyone receive such heart felt applause as she did as she led a group of perhaps forty police, preceded by the police pipe band. She warmly greeted everyone back. When she marched a few years ago after taking up the role of CC, she was cheered, but this time there was a real warmth about the interaction.
We forgot our water bottles, so in the bit of time before the march, we slipped into the IGA to get drinks. Oh, alcohol, I spied. We bought a can of vodka and citrus each, and sat on a stone wall to drink them. Along comes the husband of an ex workmate of R's who lives near us. His reddened face convinced me that as he is married, he can't possibly be gay. Daughter, he stammered. Just around the corner. Lives in a flat. Bringing her a fan. Just wondering what the fuss is about. Yeah, ok.
Then a familiar face walked by, body attached Brian before you jump in. Looks like Reuben. Can't be. Hair is not quite right. Surely he would not spoil his north side cred by visiting south of the river. But it was said Reuben and he marched in the parade. Good on him. I don't think he was in the Prostitutes Collective group, but not 100% sure.
Ok, I did only think it was Reuben. If I was sure, I would have said hello. Confirmed later.
So, as the parade finished, we headed for the tram home against the tide of people who were heading to the entertainments in the Catani Gardens.
This was all the photo we got of Little Jo.
I have taken plenty of photos other years, so I did not bother much this time. Here is the Police Pipe Band approaching where we were standing.