A fun post. One of the things I felt I needed to do as I made my way out in the world ten years ago was to connect with as many other trans people as possible. The internet has made all the difference to trans lives. Gone are the days of connecting with others through small ads in the paper or in seedy magazines.
Online forums and social media have revolutionised the way we meet and interact, and finding information couldn't be simpler. I remember when I first got a PC at home twenty years ago and tentatively typed the word "transvestite" into a search engine, half expecting red alarms to flash and sirens to blare. Instead of which the first site suggested was that of Nicola Smith, UK Transvestite (Nicola Smith), with no sexual content and a recommendation of the Boudoir dressing service, who in turn alerted me to UK Angels, a forum, where in turn I met people online and became aware of venues like Pink Punters and events like Sparkle. A chain of information that worked well.
Unlike smaller cities like Leeds or Manchester that had a recognised LGBT zone, my home city of London didn't and had a less obvious and more scattered trans scene. I spent a lot of time travelling around the country, therefore, because trying to find other TGirls in London was frustrating. You couldn't simply turn up in the 'gay district' and find others because there is no such district, and most of the clubs are either for people who won't go outside as I was now doing or have an emphasis on sex with strangers that is not my scene. Travelling all over the country did make my femme life expensive but the good friends I made and the fun times I had were certainly worth it.
The one thing I really like to do, though, is eat out. Having a meal before going to a venue is, for me, the best part of the evening.
Organising lunch somewhere is, I find, an excellent way to meet like-minded people in a relaxed, convivial atmosphere and that was the way that I eventully got to meet girls in my area. Via UK Angels forum I'd simply let people know where and when I'd plan to be and if anyone wanted to join me. These Angels lunches became quite popular and we had various favourite venues like Salieri in the Strand, Melanie in Old Compton Street, the Cambridge and Chandos pubs at either end of Charing Cross Road, Sarastro in Drury Lane, Bistro 1 in Frith Street, Belgo Centraal in Seven Dials...
|At the Cambridge|
Finally I had quite a collection of local friends and travelling round the country was no longer a necessity, just a pleasant alternative as and when. In late 2012 I met Rachel and her girls in Shoreditch and that expanded my circle, too. It was great to be able to meet others locally at last and go shopping or visit a museum or go to the cinema. You know, normal free-time stuff. So that we could be treated like typical, everyday women just living their lives and enjoying it.
A dip in the archives
Here's a post from early 2012 that sums up the lifestyle I was into at the time. It was a great balance of work and play, with lots of femme time:
Cari lettori italiani
Oggi continuo questa serie sulla vita che facevo dieci anni fa quando mi sono trovata uno stile di vita ideale. Era bello andare a trovare tante nuove amiche.