Thursday, January 23, 2014

Yin Visitations Yang

I normally write every day.  Most of it is crap, and no one sees it, but it's practice after all.  But not this week.  It's like the snow sapped me of all my energy.  I'm so tired that I haven't written at all.  And that's not good with a column for TG Forum due Sunday.  Fortunately I have a topic figured out for that. 

I've had two visitors from out of town this past week, and each visit played out very differently.  in fact, polar opposites.  Both were extremely pleasant visits, though neither were very long.


The first visit was last Saturday.  Tammy Matthews came to PA to have some electrolysis done, an swung by on her way home.  I met her once before, and had a blast.  This time was different- she had a long drive ahead, so we didn't drink.  We met at the King of Prussia Mall, which was dangerous as she is a self-diagnosed shopaholic. 

Linda Lewis came with me, and she and I went in drab, for reasons I will get to.  Tammy had never met Linda, despite both being long time Vanity Club sisters.

We met for lunch.  I bought the three of us cheesesteaks from Tony Lukes, which has a place in the food court.  All were provolone Wit', in case you're wondering.  For both Tammy and Linda, it was their second ever cheesesteak.  Yes, it's the niggling details that makes this blog what it is! 

In any case, we spent a pleasant hour together, catching up and discussing hair removal among other things.  I gave Tammy a Washington Redskins cookie tin that I had no space for in my room.  She is a Redskins fan, like me.  After an hour, Linda and I left her to the mall's temptations.  We both had appointments with Amanda Richards.

Linda has known Amanda for maybe fifteen years, but had never had a makeover from her.  So I used a little of my savings to make that happen.  A late Christmas gift, if you will.  She went first, then me, and the three of us had a great time just talking as Amanda worked.  For Amanda's late Christmas gift, I gave her a set of CDS I made of 80s music.  We listened to those.

Me and Linda after makeovers

Properly made up, Linda and I went to the Renaissance meeting.

When we arrived, I ran into Tammi.  I wrote about her a few months ago.  We spoke briefly when she whispered to me "Oh my God- I can't believe SHE'S here!" 

I said "who?"

She said "Linda Lewis! I've been following her on the internet forever!  Even longer than I've followed you!"

"Would you like to meet her?" 

Tammi's jaw dropped as I asked Linda to join us, which she did.  And I introduced them.  I really thought Tammi was going to faint. I laughed.  Later that night, Tammi asked us both to pose with her for a picture.

Me, Tammi, Linda

Linda also spoke at the meeting about how in Saginaw, Michigan, where she's from, there was no TG scene, and that we as Philadelphians were lucky to have a place to gather as we do. 

After the meeting, we went to Baxters in Malvern for Angela's Laptop LoungeLast time we were there, there was a blues band.  This time there was a band, but it was finishing up.  At Laptop, I met up with my friends the beautiful Victoria and Amy.  I then went to the bar to get a drink.  The only spot open at the bar was between the crowd and the band, who were playing their last song.  So everyone saw me ordering.  Everyone gave me a good long look.  Some commented to each other.  I didn't care.

The night was a lot of fun.  I saw many great friends, including one of my oldest friends, Jen Lehman.  Linda had a lot of people all around her.  People couldn't get enough of her.  I spent a lot of the night talking to a lesbian about being TG.  She was quite nice.  Her friend was a guy and he really didn't like being in the same room with us.  He sat on the other side of the bar, scowling and rolling his eyes, arms crossed over his chest.

Linda and I left around 1 AM.  I was very tired.  As you may remember, we live in the same boarding house.

Fast forward past a huge snowstorm to Wednesday.  On Monday into Tuesday, the Philly area got fourteen inches of snow.  As the storm raged on, Kimberly Huddle flew into Philadelphia International Airport.  She was here for work, and would be in town until Thursday.  We couldn't get together on Tuesday as the roads were horrible. 

Kim and I on her visit a few years ago

So we got together on Wednesday night.  Linda and I were ready by 6 PM, and we went to meet Kim at the Cheesecake Factory.  She was there in drab, having just finished work.  So we had a wonderful dinner, again three Vanity Club sisters, but this time only one in drab.  We then went to McKenzies for an early nightcap.  As Kim had to be up early the next morning (and so did I) we made it an early night.  I was in by 10 PM.

And so it was- two visits, two different visitors, differences in presentation and what we did.  But both were fun.  I don't get to see Kim or Tammy near enough, so I treasure each time I can see them, however short.

On an unrelated note, Wednesday I also had a meeting with the regional HR person for my retail job.  The meeting went well, and she swears that the company will stand behind me.  I'm cautiously optimistic.

Transition isn't something we do alone.  If we try this alone, we end up dead or worse.  Our strength may come from within, but it is reinforced exponentially by our friends.  My friends are my shield and my safety net.  Without them, I would've followed Lisa. 

And I treasure my friends.  Thank you- all of you.


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