The couple in room 12 are lesbians
In April 2016, the Foreign Office updated its travel advice warning gay and transgender travellers visiting the American states of North Carolina and Mississippi to be careful. The land of freedom and opportunity is still just that – as long as you’re not transgender or anyone other than Donald Trump.
I’ve travelled a lot on my own, but now that I have a super full time long term girlfriend we have been travelling together. Good times. Other lesbians and gays will be familiar with that nervous few moments you get when you first approach the hotel’s receptionist with your partner and check into your double room.
A few things go through my mind when I first give your booking details to the receptionist: Are they going to say anything about us being massive lesbians? Will they say that we can’t stay at their hotel because of our sexuality? Will they press the homosexual button where rainbow flags drop down, Wham bursts out of the radio and suddenly two sparkling pink cocktails appear in our hands. Sounds fabulous. Even if they don’t say anything, you know that they’re going to be telling their colleague that there’s two lesbians staying in room 12.
The Bedroom & Breakfast
Once you get past the receptionist you are finally in the safety of your hotel room where you can be as gay as you like. But in the morning, you’ll need to go down to breakfast. That awkward walk from the door to the table in the breakfast room when everyone is looking and most likely judging you. This is never truer than when two people of the same-sex on the morning after Valentine’s day walk into the breakfast room.
When my girlfriend and I went on a romantic weekend to Eastbourne she had booked us the spa suite. There was a Jacuzzi in the bedroom, rose petals on the floor, prosecco in an ice bucket and the towels shaped like two kissing swans on the bed. It was crystal clear what this room was going to be used for.
When we walked into the breakfast room, the waitress asked us which room we were in; we’re in the Oceania room we told her. ‘Oh, the Oceania room,’ she replied, before walking us through the crowd of straight couples enjoying their grapefruits whilst silently looking both of us up and down.
Recently at breakfast I gave the waitress our room number and she turned to Suz and asked for her room number too. No, we’re in the same room. ‘Oh, is that a twin room?’ was literally what the waitress asked us when we stayed at a spa in Chatham.
Toning down the gayness
During our holiday to Portugal we got quite a few funny looks and reactions from us just simply holding hands. It made me feel more uncomfortable than when my credit card gets declined and there’s a massive queue behind me.
I don’t mind “toning down” my gayness whilst in other countries if it means that I can travel. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to deny who I am and suddenly start taking a clutch bag out with me. I’m still going to be in my jeans with my mahusive backpack on next to Suz who’ll be wearing the exact same. I want to travel the world and see different cultures and places and if that means that I don’t get to hold my girlfriend’s hand while we walk down the beach then it’s a worthy sacrifice. I’ll just make sure we have mad passionate sex when we get back to the hotel room.
When we were in Barbados we were told that we’d be stoned for being gay there… Read the Barbados blog about their culture and LGBT attitude.