Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Travelling Gay

We here at 1234Men love travelling the world, and some of us do it with extreme regularity. But whenever The Frenchman and I hit the road and search for a place to stay, there’s always the stress of arriving at the hotel counter and being directed to a twin share instead of a double room, even at times when we had already booked the double room. And so we’re frequently explaining that yes in fact we do want the double room, yes we understand that there are no other beds in the room, that’s just FINE. Staying at Bed & Breakfast accommodation is just a no go – unless we know in advance it’s gay friendly, as who wants to stay somewhere where the hosts are right next door and gave you ‘that look’ when two men arrived for their ‘romantic suite’. Often if we’re arriving off the street just one of us will go in and organise things so that there’s no difficulty. In Spain last month I ended up drawing my request in a very Pictionary way to detail what we wanted (obviously my Spanish bedroom talk isn’t polished). We have found the automated hotels that we sometimes stay in en route to somewhere else a much more relaxed proposition – but then you miss the whole personal interaction you’d otherwise have with locals, which is half the fun of travelling in the first place.

I know there are Gay & Lesbian run / friendly / welcoming locations, but they’re not everywhere, and in spite of the stresses, you can get some delightful surprises from even the most conservative looking old ladies who have run their family hotel for years, and take measures to ensure your pleasant stay. So we continue to test the waters, push the boundaries, and occasionally run away from it all as we travel the world.

Does anyone have any travel stories where they were delighted at unexpected surprises, or dismayed at atrocious discrimination when arriving at their room for the night?

No comments: