Just to set the record straight, by “OUT” I hope you all know what I mean coz clearly one of the men in attendance didn’t; and guess who had the misfortune of seating next to him, me, talk about tough luck. Anyway after several awkward glances across the auditorium, he looks at me and asks, “Do you notice that all the couples are of the same gender?” Thinking I was definitely hearing my own things, he continues with, “This gayism and lesbianism is becoming too rampant in Kenya.” Gosh! The blank look I gave him followed by a; what are you doing here and better yet how did you find out about this function?
You see, Kenya was having its first ever OUT FILM FESTIVAL, featuring films and documentaries from all corners of the world that tackled coming out and acceptance amongst other topics. Pretty cool huh! And the best part was the attendance, especially on the first day, where allies and members of the LGBTQ community showed up in thrones forcing many to either stand or stay outside awaiting available seats or space. This was clearly a good thing and a proud moment for me. The event was only going to last two days and by its close, all I could think of is when and where the next one would be staged. ((LOUD and PROUD))
Back to my seatmate, well I managed to give him my two pence on acceptance, being open minded and not following, blindly, what the society at large had to say. “Sit back, watch and enjoy and if you honestly don’t feel comfortable, you are allowed to leave.” Did it surprise me that he chose to stay? Not really, and did it surprise me that he was there the next day, bright and early, seated front row and centre and didn’t leave until the very close? NO. You see, this man was either in his mid 40s or late 30s early 40s and as much as he tried to pull the “My culture does not accept this and feigned ignorance of what he was attending” I knew better and thus handed him a Gay Kenya brochure (who by the way were the organizers of the event ‘KUDOS’) and let him be, I see a future member in the works lol!
So, the festival is over and we’re heading home, the topic on everyone’s lips is what this festival would lead to ((PRIDE FESTIVALS)) and the works :) talk about things already looking brighter and of course more colourful for the country huh!