I love Pride! I get invigorated hearing “Happy Pride” from complete strangers, I love watching the parades and reveling in the amazing loving energy! My absolute favorite part of the parade, whether seeing it for the first time in the 1990s in my home town of Baltimore or in the Tampa Bay area where I now call home, has always been the very beginning when the sexy women ride on the motorcycles. I would often dream about being one of them.
I have organized and participated in many Pride parades over the years and in several countries. I took part in a few Pride parades in Berlin when I was living there (They call it Christopher Street Day Parade after the historical events at Stonewall in New York City). I also participated in several Pride Parades in Toronto, including a few Dyke Marches, while living there.
But, I never had the opportunity to participate while riding a motorcycle – until now! I just happened to fall in love with a woman who rides. I was so excited when she asked me to ride on the back of her bike in the parade in Tampa, Florida, what would be the first Pride event in the entire country (perhaps the entire world) since the pandemic began.
We were asked to get there early to get organized. My girlfriend Chrissy used this opportunity to decorate her bike, named Raven. (By the way, her truck is parked in the driveway and Raven gets the garage.)
In case you are wondering what kind of bike she rides, it’s a 2015 Yamaha 1300 Tourer Deluxe. It’s loud, smooth and powerful and riding it reminds me of being a teenager.
I was so proud to ride behind Chrissy, the sexiest biker out there! I loved waving to crowds and shouting, “Happy Pride” to everyone. In times of rest, I wrapped my arms around Chrissy and gave her open love and affection. I could feel the overwhelming love and acceptance from the crowd. Although the spectators were fewer in numbers than usual, the people who were there seemed to need and revel in the public celebration after being pent up for so long. It was a great event to be a part of.
One of the benefits about being toward the beginning of a parade is being able to watch the rest after your part is finished. We enjoyed watching the remainder of the many floats and groups full of Pride!
After the Parade
It was nearing dinner time when the parade was finished and we were getting hungry. We were so delighted to see that the Vegan Deli in Dunedin that we loved to much had opened a restaurant in Tampa (Ybor City), only steps away from where the parade ended.
We grabbed some yummy vegan grub and we enjoyed our meal in the little park across the street. One of the many things that Ybor City is known for is the free-roaming chickens and roosters. It was the perfect vegan scenario – eating delicious vegan food surrounded by curious and friendly chickens.
After filling our bellies, we headed to a local bar, had a drink and talked about how much fun Pride was. At the end of the day, we mounted Chrissy’s bike and literally drove off into the sunset to head back to Clearwater. What an event!