jekyll isle

jaunt at jekyll island

No space is sacred
Sadly cannot hear
This frail unforgiving relentless defenseless invasion of fear
I hide in the sand
But the voices get louder
I do what I can
As the sea overpowers….
‘Get Away’, Supreme Beings of Leisure, Divine Operating System

Alright, I’m back. I was able to go to Jekyll Island and to
a (female) wedding in the meantime, ensure the best wishes of J.
, miss everything over at Wood’s,
watch it get colder and rainier in Hotlanta, and catch my first bad cold in
over a year. I had good intentions, but a lazy, cold, and illness-filled couple
of weeks.

So much for excuses. I changed up and decided that I’d rather be in the middle
of the sunshine of Atlanta this weekend than be in the wonderful winds of chilly
Chicago. This also gives me more time (and inclination) to blog and get ready
for the New York/New Jersey area next week.

But since I’m here, I thought it would be a swell thing to give you a really
quick rundown on what I’ve been doing since I’ve been gone. Not two weeks ago,
I was out at Jekyll Island spending time at the Gay Men’s Health Summit.
The reasons were twofold – one because Big L. and I love hanging
out, and two because we love going to places outside of Atlanta to listen, learn,
and carouse. He loves driving, I love being a passenger. It works out extremely
well. This time, I took a camera. The good news – I have photographs….the
bad – I have thumbnails of each picture, but since each full picture is a lot
of space (anywhere between 200K and 1/2 MB), I’ve decided to only show the thumbnails.
(Any person who wants full photos, let me know and I’ll get them to you).

The first night, Big L. and I drive from Atlanta to Jekyll
Island, a place that is near Savannah, Georgia and is on an island which sits
in the Atlantic Ocean. This is nice since the largest drawback in living in
the Atlanta area is being near very, very small pockets of water. Yes, I’m sure
everyone has heard of the Chatahoochee River, but you could do other things
than sit in the sludge infested river…like wash frying pans or give your dog
a bath.

I've known RayRae for  more than a decade. You would think he would avoid me these days, but he still hangs. What a pal.
Duane and Antoine, from AidAtlanta.  They both give  good ...seminars.
Big L. and Sir in the flesh.
We arrive around 1 AM on a very rainy island after eating KFC
which is more KC and a minimal amount of F
(seriously horrendous). After switching rooms we make it to bed around 3 AM
Thursday night. Classes start Friday morning at 8:00 AM. What time do we awaken?
9:00 AM. What time do we leave the room? 10:30 AM. I run into a couple of people:
Ray Rae who is a good friend and maximizes our time by giving
a course and Duane and Ant, who are employees
of Aid Atlanta, sponsors
of the summit, and course presenters as well. We hook up with Sir,
who I’ve seen literally 5 times in the last few weeks and who’s destined to
become a friend of mine.

Big L., A, and R. posing after the fish (and chicken).
Nicks. All you can eat fish. Don't ask me why they have a cow there.
After spending a minimal amount of time in workshops on the first day, we meet
up with A and R and decide we’re going to go eat and then go
shopping for the Halloween affair for the evening. My opinion? Food, yes – shopping,
no. Nevertheless we go on the trail to accomplish both goals. Our first stop
ended up being Nicks, lotsa fish, lotsa salad, lotsa tea, and lotsa beverage
for not alotta money. I must have been hungry, seeing as I ate quite a bit of
fish and drank quite a bit o’ tea. We spent time in the most lavish places to
prepare for the night, including Walmart
and Jekyll’s Costume and Jellyfish Emporium, and came back
to the hotel, filled with catfish, orange and yellow costumes, and dreams of

Big L. eats cake and saves some for the rest of us.
Big L. on the left with Death on the right.  Oops! Sorry, the other way around!
Absolutely the best mask-- and I swear I forgot his name.
Big L. and Lil' D.

We kinda missed the boat with costuming, since A. and I weren’t
feeling it, and Big L. and R. mistook October
as being a summer month and therefore wore less clothes than most of the population
in America. Given the fact that there were plenty of others with costumes on,
I spent time admiring them, drinking peach schnapps with orange juice, and pretended
I wanted to dance, when in reality I wanted to go back to the hotel room to
sleep. The same wasn’t true for Big L., who wanted to sing
his heart out at karaoke. After this cute yet terrifying ordeal was over, we
had to deal with catching up with the issues of health and assistance. We went
to bed again around 2 AM, hoping to catch up with everything on Saturday

Hickory, Dickory, and Doc.
Bg L. and KK.  Which one is 21?
Anthony and Malik from  Aid Atlanta.
With most of the Summit over, I figured I wanted to spend some time actually
learning things, so I set out to attend three workshops on Saturday. What happened?
Well, I slept through the first workshop, avoided the second workshop, and ended
up going to one workshop: Hot Southern Sex, which was given by Adodi
. It had to be ne of the most interesting workshops I’ve gone to in
quite some time. This workshop led me to confess my first sexual experiences
with the same gender with a person I’d never even met before. This was to be
done while physically touching the person who you had just met in the hopes
there could be some understanding and some enlightenment. Given that my person
was a person of the Caucasian persuasion, I expected there to be some type of
apprehension, but we actually grew to appreciate each other and see beyond a
potential anxiety issue. While he spoke of his first contact being made at age
28, I had to confess that my first memorable contact was made at age 10. This
opened up my mind for further discussion, but alas, there was not enough time
in the day to talk about ageism issues with the same person of gender. Leaving
a gaping hole in my brain, I was forced to leave the room with more questions
than answers. Leaving the room hungry for knowledge and food on a Saturday night,
I got ready for the…

The first table.
The second table.
LB, presenter, with Anthony from Aid Atlanta.
The two gyrlz at the bar. So very, very cool.
The third table.
The fourth table.
The fifth table.
The sixth table.
Lucky seven!
…luau. I took more pictures than I thought I would have and I ate less food
than I should have. Brain: 1, Food: 0. I met lots of great people, but not a
lot of great food. If I’m not mistaken, I ended up eating Butterfingers and
while the rest of them went karaoke-ing yet again, I stayed home and hung out
on the Internet, preparing for our final day.

More of the crew.
Even more where that came from.
This man was an absolute vision of warmth. The last hug for the trip and  someone I wish I had gotten to know earlier on in the summit.
As we prepared for the exit on Sunday, we listed what we could have done, what
we should have done, and what we will do in the up and coming years. When asked
about my most concerning issue, I didn’t think it was a huge issue, so I didn’t
mention it. It was only after they concluded that I had one issue that stuck
in my my mind. If we have Blacks and Whites in the same summit, why didn’t we
try to place more emphasis on multicultural, color-blind groups? It seemed that
there were quite a few people that wanted to get to know others from the group,
but because of racial apprehensiveness, work between the two races came to a
standstill at most points. After I mentioned this to a small group of people
who I had gotten to know, other people who overheard the conversation came up
to me and agreed – race was an issue that could have been easily overcome. When
asked what should have been done, everyone felt that the instructors and the
sponsors should have taken charge and worked with both races themselves. This,
of course, leads up to the double edged sword – why wait for the higher levels
to make waves when people there to learn can open up their minds and make changes

Leaving with that question hanging around, I felt a sense of accomplishment
and learning despite the lack of movement around other issues faced every day
with organizations, employment, and summits everywhere. With that in mind, I
left Jekyll Island with new people, new enlightenment with the same hunger and
the same unanswered questions.

Bug in ya ear: If anyone can please tell me where I could get software
which acts as an audio sampler/fader, I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m leaning
toward spending anywhere between 2 cents and a dollar.

5 thoughts on “jekyll isle

  1. Glad to see you are doing well! I was getting worried when you hadn’t made a post in weeks……

  2. Glad to see you are doing well! I was getting worried when you hadn’t made a post in weeks……

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