Sunday, August 05, 2007

Gay Pride 2007 in Amsterdam

This weekend was the flamboyant celebration that attracts thousands of tourists and eager spectators (they say 400,000+ this year?) - the annual Gay Pride in Amsterdam. And, yesterday Saturday afternoon was the highlight of the festivities, the canal gay boat parade.

We actually missed the gay boat parade since we woke up late. We didn’t get to Amsterdam until 5PM, and up to some point while we were getting ready, we thought of not going, but the weather was so marvelous, sitting at home would be a grave sin.

When we arrived in Amsterdam, the city center was in jubilation - but the colorful and lavishly bedecked boats with euphoric gay participants covered in bright makeup and dressed up in extravagant, sensational, and erotic drag costumes have passed through already. To see what we have missed, click the fotos at here: Gay Pride 2007 Fotos (click on the diashow below the foto)

However, we managed to see a couple of interesting ones.

Party boats filled the canals of Amsterdam and I like this guy’s simple yet catchy headdress.

This is by the bridge crossing in Prinsengracht and me trying to hide away from the sun. It was (hallelujah) great weather in the Netherlands! At long last.

On the left are spectators enjoying the parade while bathing under the hot sun. Many boats yesterday have become boat terraces.

And of course, the videos!


This colorful drag queen group installed a pole on their boat. Click on the video to see the pole dancing.


Tall, tanned, and muscled, hunk gays in their immaculate white tight scanty boxers.

Although it’s a gay event, the irony is... there were more heterosexuals than homosexuals joining the boat parades and the street and dance festivities.

Taking a quick foto shoot. Next fotos are spectators of the gay canal boat parade. On the right foto is a packed boat. These people probably spent more than 8 hours sitting here to watch the parade. Of course they are heteros.
There were also lots of street and dance parties going on in various pockets of Amsterdam center. We ran into one gathering in Amstelveld sponsored by – the place was crammed!

Some pictures:

Dance party at Amstelveld. Can you spot me? (I am already wearing my 3-inches high-heel sandals here!)

And guess how much a glass of Heineken beer costs? - FIVE freaking Euros! I think the plastic cup “statiegeld” (deposit money) made the price of the beer double as this allows you to get money back if you return the plastic cup. The aim is not to profit from the high cost of beer during these dance parties but to prevent people from littering beer cans and bottles all over the place.

And a video Dutchman took on top of a bike and a bike iron handle stall -


I love trance-dance parties, most especially when the crowd is my age and older. Most trance-dance parties in the Netherlands are flocked by teenagers.

Beautiful Amsterdam on a beautiful warm and sunny day. Next foto is Leidseplein. It is always busy here.

A foto shoot after my pasta dinner somewhere in the sidestreets of nearby Leidseplein.

More pictures that I took, see here: Amsterdam Gay Pride 2007

Anyway, most people (well mostly tourists) are surprised (and entertained too) at the decadent public display of gender and sexuality in Amsterdam but unfortunately we were not prepared for the worse: out-and-out exhibitionism.

A woman was defecating in public!

Oh dear, I could not believe my eyes. I looked around seeking for confirmation that my eyes were not playing tricks on me and saw that all the bystanders and passersby were also in utter disbelief state. Their eyes and mouths were like mine - big as an owl and gaping wide open.

The exhibitionist woman was on board in one of the party boats and obviously she had that I-need-to-poop-now-or-else-I-will-die moment. I saw her bring down her pants to her knees while being helped by a man, probably her boyfriend or husband. Then, she sat by the wooden ridge of the open boat with her glorious naked pale butt hanging out and her private schism smiling at all of us baffled onlookers. It was slightly after 8PM in Prinsengracht and the crowds have moved on to the party places or eating squares, so it was not that teeming with people anymore. Still, there were quite a handful of people lazing around by the canals and passing by, like Dutchman and I.

A couple beside us standing along the canals, who were, of course, also stunned at the flagrant and vulgar public display, chatted up with me.

“Is she doing what I think she is doing?” I asked.

“Yes, she is. I just saw the poop went down the canal.”

Oh gross!!!

The man who helped the woman defecate was having a little heated discussion with a passerby because the curious and I would assume entertained passerby (he had those traditional cameras with huge lens hanging from his neck, could be a tourist), I think, took a foto -- Oh well, what can you expect with showing off your excrement in public would provoke people to do?

“Uh, eww, vieze wijf!”- Dutchman kept saying.

What I thought was really weird is this -- her group of friends in the boat seemed to think her discharging in public is okay? And why could she just not step out of the boat and rang randomly the doorbells along Prinsengracht and explain her dilemma? If she is in that dire state, I am sure someone will accommodate her?

Just unbelievable.

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