Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Part 2 - The Truth About Being Gay in Sydney Australia

Are These People Typically Gay?

I was born in Queensland and spent my childhood growing up in the suburbs of Brisbane before moving to Sydney. I had the usual life like any other Australian kid.

When I'd met Choi I was living in the suburbs of Fairfield south west of Sydney. Like I mentioned in my previous blog post I had a good job, renting a town house, nice furniture (my family use to call it the doll's house from House & Garden magazine lol). I had a car and I lived the usual lifestyle of any other suburban person. I was content.

It was at this point that I'd befriended an Argentinean guy who also lived near Fairfield. Fairfield was the kind of suburb (and still is) where you could have a coffee at the local café and people would sometimes just chat to one another. It's a good atmosphere. Anyway this guy (who I'll refer to as "Tony") turned out to be gay and over the course of our friendship (yes we were just friends nothing more) he convinced me to go to Oxford St and the Albury Hotel and that's how I came to meet Choi.

We dated for a year before Ching Sim asked me to move in with him. It was an interesting year to say the least. I got to meet his friends who were all Chinese except for the occasional Australian who was partnered with one of Choi's friends.

* Jon - in his mid 20's was from Singapore and worked as a flight attendant. Actually at this point he'd just completed his trainee-ship. He lived with Al (a 50 something year old) who owned his house in Newtown. Jon was also dating another guy slightly older than Al (I'll refer to him as Charles) who owned a house in Leichhardt and had been diagnosed with HIV. Al didn't know about Charles of course, but Jon was working on a plan to convince Charles to allow him to move into his house. As Jon had told us repeatedly he was working on Charles to get him to write everything he owned in his will to Jon.

Jon didn't particularly like me because I was not a "glamorous queen" as he liked to refer to himself. He felt that because I was only renting a house in the suburbs I wasn't up to his standard. I eventually had to remind him that he actually didn't own anything apart from the wayward hearts of two lonely old men.

* Henry - Chinese in his 30's studying IT at the University of Canberra. He lived with his lover (a very nice guy) in Canberra but would drive to Sydney every Friday night to stay the weekend with his other lover in Surry Hills and to visit night clubs. He was a polite person, friendly but very much narcissistic. He couldn't pass a reflective surface without stopping and looking at himself (for a very long time). He slept around but never told his Canberra lover. He mentioned on several occasions that guy was a matter of convenience until he'd finished studying. Once he gained his degree he moved back to China to work for his brother's business.

* Terry - an Australian guy who was a little older than Choi. He's a member of the Refugee Review Tribunal. His lover was also from Singapore and about 16 years his junior. Years later when his lover had gained Australian citizenship he revealed to Terry that he'd been having an affair with a guy closer to his own age and left. Terry was (and still is) an amateur photographer, mostly taking pictures of semi naked Asian men he meets in bath houses and bordellos along his regular journeys through Asian countries. He exhibits these photos each year in a small local gallery where every year a consistent group of the same friends attend to view them and pretend to adore them as they gleefully stick coloured dots on the ones they pretend to want to purchase.

Terry was the ex-lover of Choi (I soon found out later). They'd been together for several years before Choi had  an affair and left Terry for a younger man (from whom Choi had left a year before meeting me). They eventually decided to remain friends. Over the 14 years we'd been together we attended many parties at Terry's home (always filled with young Asian men some still waiting for their Visas or Citizenship) but he was always rude to me, avoided any conversation and would often refer to me as a westie (a derogatory term for someone who lived west of the city). I always told myself it didn't matter how Terry felt about me because I had Choi not him.

Choi and, reluctantly, I would remain friends with Terry throughout our relationship. Terry was to play a small role in the breakdown of our relationship years later through the introduction of one of his friends (an extremely narcissistic Asian associate of his).

There were of course other friends Choi had, none of whom made any effort to get to know me. I was that westie who didn't belong in the inner sanctum of gay city life. I didn't dress like them, I wasn't interested in dance music and I didn't approve of the Mardis Gras parade (which I still believe gives a false impression of what being gay is all about).

I just didn't fit in with the Sydney gay scene and years later I stopped trying.

(next - meeting the parents)

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