We wondered, my husband and I, what it must be like for our friends to live in Dallas, Texas, as gay democrats.

  Paul and Jack lived together in a suburban neighborhood, which seemed to to us, to wreak of quintessential conservatism. 

                                                                                              FISH OUT OF WATER

That was twenty years ago and to say there was less room for diversity would be an under-statement. Especially in Texas.

They are charming, these two, and did manage to make friends, most of whom, they said, were straight couples.

At times,” Paul admitted, ”I did feel like some kind of curiosity with a responsibility to be otherwise “perfect.”

“That’s when we escaped,” said Jack.

My oldest pal and his partner explained how sometimes being in a room full of like-minded gays, offered the welcome relief, emotionally and intellectually, that they needed. I thought I got that.

Then, this last week I spent a day off the shore of Long Island, with a girlfriend, on
Fire Island, New York

Our host, my husband’s cousin, lives in The Pines, an especially beautiful part of the island. He lives in a house built by Horace Gifford, Frank’s brother, who built and at least influenced, many of the island’s cedar and glass homes.

horace

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Story has it that Horace was blackballed from building after his homosexuality was revealed. Fire Island opened their hearts and their door to his incredible and over-looked talent in the 60’s and 70’s.

Today, The Pines looks and feels like heaven on earth, even to my now Californian eyes. The surf is warm and the sand feels delicious between my toes.

Beautiful men with incredible, intimidating bodies were all over the place. It was hard not to notice, given that it was 85 degrees and they were all in skimpy bathing suits.

I was glad I had left my bathing suit home.

Because there were so few females in sight, I thought about my old buddy and his experience in Texas, so long ago. I felt welcome, but like a visitor… and not just because I didn’t own one of these beautiful homes.

Still, I loved that there are no cars allowed. And the expansive white beaches are meant to be shared by everyone, straight or gay.

Fire Island is a delightful retreat for many New Yorkers, most of whom, happily return to the big city for their more integrated, work week.

For me, however, New York City, itself, remains my retreat. I’m on a plane as I write this… for the most part… happy to be on the way home.  


Thanks For Visiting,

Email Dr. Linda

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