Sunday, December 31, 2006

I think I'm turning into...

I started writing this blog 31 December 2006 thinking I'd do a review of the year that was. But I wasn't really inspired and so it's now 10 January 2007 and I'm finally re-writing.

I'm currently still frantically dating as many guys as I can, with the consequence that I'm feelilng a little fatigued! "Dating fatigue" if there is such a thing. It's a funny situation I find myself in - something I've never experienced before but from what I can ascertain, is quite common amongst gay guys. DG is quite the expert and has set high standards for the rest of us. I'm currently trying to beat his all time record of having 9 dates on one weekend. My best so far is 5 dates in two days! It is sometimes a bit of a whirlwind, and I feel like I'm turning into the Dating Guy (but for Trademark purposes, I'll remain Monty)!

Is it that we think that there is always something better out there? The thing is that I am seeing a lovely guy - he works in a foreign consulate here in Sydney. PC and I have been seeing each other since before Christmas. We've been shagging which is most pleasant, and we seem to get on very well. I'm excited every time I see him and he turns me on very easily! However, he's pretty happy with things as is, and doesn't feel that we should be in a "relationship" as such because of my relative newness to the gay scene. It's a pretty casual kind of affair really - he's a bit of a laid back guy. He's very happy for me to see other guys and so that's what I am doing. I too am wanting to meet other guys as well, but the more I see PC, the less reason there seems to keep on dating. I do actually quite like the guy. I'm not shagging anyone else and wouldn't unless I told him first, but he fully expects that I should be out there shagging as well (safely of course).

And so, I am spending most week nights meeting up with new guys that I have met on Gaydar. Most are pretty nice guys, after the first few disasters, however I have not felt the same chemistry with them that I felt when I first met PC. It's fun, but there is a sameness to the dates as you go over the same information exchange - travel, family, employment etc.

Everyone says that I really need to get out and explore, meet new men to work out what I am really looking for, given my relative inexperience in gay relationships. But my nature (and nurture) keeps steering me towards dating one person at a time. It's a dilemna which so far I've ignored but the more I see PC, the more keeps tapping me on the shoulder!

The other thing is that I have met one other guy who shall remain nameless for the time being. Physically, he doesn't fit my general criteria, however I get on very well with him, he's a good conversationalist and is quite cute. I hesitate to formally ask him out, as he does move in my general social circle and so it's a bit trickier, particularly if things don't go well. But I do really like him!

So it's a conflict between my natural desire to settle down with one guy (which at this moment would be PC), the thrill of the chase with the Gaydar masses (and it is a thrill), or the cerebral delights of dating a friend.

Hmmmmmmm...! What's a boy to do???

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Out and about...!

Feels like it's been months since my last blog...I think it's about 3 or 4 weeks in reality. But it's been so chaotic, that when I get home, the last thing I feel like doing is blogging! Which doesn't really make sense, as I have been sitting on the PC typing a lot, just not on the blog. What have I been typing? ask.

When Dane and I broke up, I decided I needed to expand my horizons somewhat, get out there and meet more guys! And so, gaydar profile in hand, I commenced trawling through the thousands of profiles, looking, looking, looking...and getting rather shocked in some instances, and impressed with others! I've left tracks on guys profiles, I've sent messages, and I've had lots of response! Which has been nice! And so, armed with some sound advice from my guardian angel DG, I've started meeting all these guys!

And what an experience it is! As DG mentioned to me the other day, it's quite an exciting thing, when it first happens. All these guys seem to like my profile, seem to like my conversation when I talk to them via MSN and on the phone, and so want to meet me! It's flattering! But then, once I meet them, I see why they are so enthusiastic! They're FREAKS! Well, some of them anyway!

I always knew that on Gaydar and the like, you are never going to get the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth! I've heard of the Gaydar age and Gaydar inches and so was expecting this. But the level of dishonesty is staggering! What do these guys hope to achieve? I mean, sooner or later, you're going to find out that they are actually 10 yrs older than they claim, and that rather than extra large, they're lucky if they're average! And it's not a good start to any kind of relationship (be that sexual or platonic). I met up with this guy the other week and he was supposed to be "defined" as body type...defined my arse! Unless you call pear-shaped defined that is...! So it's certainly been an education!

I haven't had all bad experiences, let me hasten to add. I've met some lovely guys and we are now chatting regularly and in the New Year, will no doubt meet up again for another beer or coffee or whatever. At the moment, I'm running out of evenings to meet up with all the usual Christmas social stuff that happens. And the good thing is that I'm not shagging any of them, so I can apraise them with a more level head. After jumping into a relationship with Dane (lovely though he is) and finding myself completely out of depth, I've pulled back considerably. Just happy to meet guys, chat, have a beer or two, and leave it at that. In good time, if I like any of them, I'll let it move to the next stage. Baby steps...that's my new philosophy!

So, now christmas is approaching and I'm off down the coast for the long weekend! My brother Mark arrived today from London with his new boyfriend and I'll be spending the weekend with them, plus a few of his friends. It will be great. And this Friday, I'm having a couple of NSSG's friends (Gav, Gay Academia and Mike) over for dinner which will be lovely! He's been great in introducing me to his circle of friends and so gradually I am increasing my gay social circle! We'll miss DG who was going to be there, but in an impulsively romantic gesture, threw caution to the wind (and several thousand dollars too no doubt) and is flying over to the USA to spend Christmas with NSSG...sigh! How sweet!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, November 27, 2006

The Man of Steel...?

So it's been 2 weeks since my last entry...yes, it's been a while and there's been lots happening! I suppose the big thing was telling my family I was gay and that I had left the church. Sounds so simple...and yet when it came to it, I was a MESS! Basically wept for the better part of an hour on the phone to mum and dad! They were very kind, very understanding and very reassuring of their love for me! They said that nothing would change the fact that I am their son and they would always be there for me. BUT...they couldn't condone my lifestyle. And they were heartbroken that I had left the church. And so, contact between us is now going to be limited. And that was it.

It may sound cold or unfeeling, however I know this is hurting my parents as much as it is hurting me! They are doing what they genuinely believe is the right thing, and I wouldn't want them to do something which would affect their consciences, namely by keeping up normal contact with me. I respect their devotion to God and what they feel is the right course to take. But it still doesn't make it any easier to deal with.

I told my big brother Steve later that week. Same story! Perhaps even harder, because he's my big brother, the one who's always been there as my protector! It's truly devastating to be the one that causes your big tough brother to break down on the phone...and yet, that is what he did. And I did. Never before has that happened. (we are not a very emotionally expressive family)

So it was a really really really tough week. Dane, Carl and DG were all very caring and made sure I was OK which was lovely. But still, I was struggling. Dane particularly was very understanding, wanted to be there for me, and was very giving of himself...despite getting very little in return from me. We went to a lovely dinner party on the weekend at DG's where I got to meet NSSG for the first time (he's lovely) as well as Gay Academia and another of NSSG's friends! So it was a lovely night, a great distraction from the emotional turmoil that I had been through that week.

But despite all that, I was not coping. And I was feeling guilty. Guilty about disappointing my family, guilty that I had lied to them for so long, guilty that I had betrayed my friends, guilty that Dane was giving all the time and not getting anything back from me! I was emotionally drained and I was getting more and more stressed.

Dane could see this, and he tried his best to help, but with me clamming up (going into my cave), he was in the dark. He tried to talk to me, but I couldn't. And the more the week progressed, the more I realized that I was not handling all that was happening to me. I thought that I would be able to do it all...that I was the Man of Steel, able to cope with everything and so had jumped in feet first! Come out to my friends, leave my church, tell my family I was gay, and get into my first gay relationship! WRONG! I couldn't do it all, I was, after all, mortal...yes, there was Kryptonite out there and I was being affected.

And so, I finally realized that I was being unfair to Dane in remaining in a relationship with him, when it was becoming a one-sided thing...all in my favour! I was being selfish in expecting him to be there for me, to understand what I was going through when I wouldn't actually tell him how I was feeling, what I was going through. And, my guilt about this was adding to my stress. And so, we had a really good heart to heart on Saturday night and decided that it was best to end our fledgling relationship while we were still friends, and remain friends, very good friends! Better than persisting on and him get more frustrated with me, and me feel more guilty about him, and us end up ending the relationship on bad terms. I care too much about him to lose his friendship and so, in the interests of keeping our friendship, we have done this.

And you know, hard as it is, I do feel less stress. We are still talking, in fact, we are having lunch tomorrow and I'm hanging out to see him, particularly with his newly shorn hairdo! Very spunky! I think we will come out of this very good friends and, when I'm emotionally sane again, who knows!

One thing I have learned from the past couple of weeks is that I am human, that I can't do everything, that there is a limit to what I can cope with and how to pace myself! And how appreciative I am of the friends I have!

Monday, November 13, 2006

A Choice to Make...

It's been a while, I'm now in week two of being back in Sydney, back at work, trying to get back into my normal life...but with some significant differences!

You see I thought my first blog back in Sydney would be about how lucky we are to live in Australia, and more particularly Sydney! And I do think that, despite all the incredible places I've been to in the last 6 weeks, and in my past journeys. However, something much more fundamental is happening in my life, which is having greater impact on me than I ever expected.

A couple of weeks ago, Dating Guy wrote about a conflict of faith where he described the issues he went through when, as a member of a conservative Christian organization, he realized he was gay. Funnily enough, I am now going through those very same issues! I too, have up until now, belonged to a very conservative Christian organization which takes the Bible very literally. I grew up in this organization and the great majority of my friends are part of this organization. But, being gay, and being part of this organization are two mutually exclusive lifestyles. And so, ever since I have known I was gay, I have had an internal conflict as to which path to choose. It's been a very long and anguished journey to the point now where I have chosen to live my life as a gay man. And so, tomorrow night, I will meet with the elders in my church to explain to them that I am no longer going to be a member of this religious organization. This is the easiest part. And trust me, I've been sick with worry since I returned home to Sydney about taking this particular step.

The next hardest thing hit me today in a very real way. I had, prior to my departure, told a select group of my closest friends that I was gay and, by and large, they accepted this. However accepting they were, I knew, and they knew, that the death knell had been sounded on our friendship. Today, my two closest friends, independent of each other, emailed me; their emails arriving literally 5 minutes apart. In it, they both expressed the thought that although they may not understand why I felt this way, and how I must be feeling at the moment, they wanted to know that they supported me because I was their friend. I feel my eyes welling up as I am writing this, just as my eyes did when I read their emails at work today. I will be meeting up with both of them on Wednesday, where we will say our goodbyes. Their love and affection is with me, however they feel they have a higher obligation and so contact between us will be over. I understand this, and in no way do I hold a grudge at them or at my church. When I chose to live my life as a gay man, I knew the consequences of my choice. I am now starting to feel the very painful effects of that choice.

My large circle of friends, many of them long term friends, will dwindle quite significantly down to a handful of relatively new friends, among them, DG, whom I have known for about 3 months, a couple of friends from work and a couple of my older brother's friends who are still here in Sydney. And of course, the new man in my life, Dane - the man with whom I had an electronic relationship whilst overseas, and who I met in the flesh the first night I returned, not 10 days ago. So my life is essentially turning completely upside down! And I am feeling pretty emotional about this.

The hardest thing is yet to come. That is telling my parents and my oldest brother, all of whom still live in Queensland. They are still very active members of the church and this will be particularly difficult for them, and for me. Whilst contact will not be severed, it will be severely constrained. And I know that this will be devastating for my parents especially. I have been their "golden child", the youngest, the baby, but also we have been through a lot together; my parents have made significant sacrifices in their life to ensure I was successfully established here in Sydney and I feel I have a debt owing to them for the love and care they willingly gave to me. And so I have no idea how I will tell them, but tell them I must. I can no longer live a lie, I can no longer go on telling them that "I have just not met the right girl yet", that "I like being single" and other excuses for not being married (to a woman) at the grand old age of 35.

But, as with my friends, this was a choice that I had to make, fully cognizant of the ramifications thereof. And so, this week is going to be a tough one for me emotionally. I will have to go on at work as if nothing is the matter, when I have in effect, lost the majority of my friends and most of my family.

But I do have reason to be grateful. Grateful to people like DG, who didn't sign on to be a shoulder to cry on for me, and yet has stepped up and been just that, without ever reproaching me or complaining or saying that he's got enough on his plate already! Grateful to Carl, my new friend in Budapest, who is getting up early and staying up late so that we can communicate across two continents and several timezones. Grateful to the new man in my life Dane, who, whilst struggling to understand what I am going through, and despite only having met me 10 days ago, is determined to be there for me 100%. I am truly blessed by the kindness of these relative strangers (who have become in such a short time very dear friends) and that's certainly reason to be grateful for this choice that I have made.

Friday, November 03, 2006

It's the last day of my holiday...

Well, it's finally arrived, the last day! Never expected it to come so quickly...but it has. This holiday has been completely different from what I expected...Big Time! But I have learned a lot about myself, I feel I have found a real and genuine friend in DG, and I have also had a great time.

Now back to Sydney, back to real life and making a start on a relationship!

I remember reading about how in the "old days", people used to write letters (really, that's what they did...can you believe it???) to each other. And many relationships began, or were maintained in that way. Could the same be said today with emails, MSN chat, sms texting etc. Well, perhaps not can't say enough usually with sms. But with emails and MSN chatting, could that be the same thing as letters of yesteryear?

I say this because I have been having an intense electronic relationship (I suppose you'd call it a relationship...not sure what else to call it) with a guy in Sydney. We have not met, in fact, his first message to me via Gaydar was on the last night I was in Sydney. But since that time, it's been pretty extensive. At first, I enjoyed the messages and emails and continued to reply. But it has gradually got more and more intense, as we discover mutual likes and dislikes and just simply more about each other. Particularly in the last week or two has it been getting that way. It's a very strange thing, becuase I have been having these relatively short term relationships in Germany and Czech, along with this developing electronic relationship at the same time. And as mentioned, there's the unrequitted thing with Carl in Budapest to add to the mix! I've certainly got around!

Now, as I mentioned in my last entry, time in Mykonos to think has allowed me to sort many things out. I've had a couple of long chats to Oscar (in Paris) and we've agreed that what we had was great, but it was a "holiday romance" type thing, and we will be friends and keep in contact. I am very happy about that, because he is a great guy! He's even talking about coming to Australia for a visit which would be fantastic!

Mike, he's been on holidays and travelling back to the US and so we haven't had much chance to chat...I just received an email tonight and he's back home, jetlagged. Again, I hope to talk to him soon and sort things out as per Oscar. I would love to remain friends with him ongoing.

And as for Carl...we have had some serious and lengthy (and quite expensive) discussions and again, sorted it all out. He is going to be another great friend of mine, someone with a very level head and a very caring nature.

And as for my electronic correspondent...well, we are going to meet up and see what happens. I am hoping the sparks will fly and we will be able to start dating. Who knows with this type of thing...sometimes the person on the page may not turn out to be exactly the person in the flesh...I don't know - it's a first for me. But from the long conversations we have had...I am feeling optomistic. I am trying to be realistic about it as well and not get my hopes too high! We'll see!

But, I have come out of this holiday with some fantastic new friends, loads more confidence in myself, and the ability to pick up guys in bars! ha ha! Hopefully, that skill will not be required going forward!

So I shall sign off now and next entry will be in challenge for Monty...coming out to my parents! The BIG one!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

It's not raining men, hallelujah!

Still in Mykonos, and it's still raining...torrential, pouring rain. I was out walking the narrow streets this morning and it came absolute dumping, the streets were literally creeks, with water gushing down! It was quite exhilarating actually, I haven't experienced this kind of rain for a long time in Sydney!

So, instead of moaning on about my love life, or lack thereof, I thought I would instead, talk about Mykonos in late October - a Mykonos perhaps many have not experienced! It's mostly closing down now, there are no gay bars cranking out the dance tunes till the early hours, there's not the wall to wall eye candy walking around, and yes, Super Paradise Beach is completely deserted - the only other man there yesterday was a cat! (and even then, I didn't actually check if it was a boy cat, but seeing as how it was on Super Paradise Beach, I assumed it was a he) But it is still quite a magical place...the streets are quiet, the shop keepers are quite friendly and have time to chat. The harbour water is crystal clear and there are cruise ships here constantly - at least one a day, yesterday two were in port! I find this amazing at this time of year, when all the gay guys have disappeared, that the place still survives.

It's a place that, despite its dependence on tourism, still maintains its Greek heart. Yes, the menus at the restaurants are in Greek, German, French and English. Yes, they still serve chips as a side, but the Mousaka is the best I have ever tasted! This is the first place in Europe I have been where there is NO McDonalds, NO KFC, NO Burger King! Admittedly, there is a Starbucks, but that's about the extent of the Western influence!

An the quiet has given me time to wander the streets aimlessly, enjoying soaking up the atmosphere and to think...! And the questions that I have posed, well, they have seemed to have sorted themselves out! (with DG's advice, and the support of NSSG) It's amazing what a bit of time to one's self can do! It's what we have so little of in the city! Life is so hectic, time is at a premium, and so there is no time to sit back and reflect on life and what is important to us. I think I know now, and can go back to Sydney, ready for what will hit! And it will hit, I have no doubt about that...but I am ready!

Thank you Mykonos!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

It's overcast and rainy in Mykonos...

Well, here I am, in Mykonos, the island of gay men (apparently) and I've seen more elderly American tourists and girls than I have gay men!!!

Well, what's this blog about? To be honest, I'm not sure...there's a thousand things going through my mind at the moment...

Unrequited love/lust. Is there such a thing as unrequited love? Or is it just lust, the desire for what we can't have? I met Carl online via Gaydar, and met him in person in Budapest where he lives. He's English, a teacher at a private English school in Bp. A total hottie, but for me, off limits. He told me his one big love of his life ended about 10 yrs ago and since then, he's pulled back from relationships! He's a very witty guy, very English, and a total gentleman...Doh! We got on very well, and I would love to get into a relationship with him, as he seems pretty much like Mr Right to me. Naturally, there's a couple of obstacles...1. He's already had the love of his life and has shut down from relationships. and 2. we live in different hemispheres and timezones! Unfortuantely, our relationshp at the moment is very platonic! Doh again!

Since leaving Bp, I have kept an ongoing sms conversation with him, and the more we speak, the more I like the guy!

But then, here I am in Mykonos, hoping to meet up with some sort of hot guy, for a shag or two, or three. So are my feelings for Carl real, or just unrequited lust? Sigh!

Sunday, October 29, 2006


Ok, here I am in Athens at the moment...about to hit Mykonos with a vengence (hopefully). And I have a question or two...I have been talking to a guy in Sydney for about a month or so, via email and sms...we haven't yet met. He seems sensational, we seem to have similar likes/dislikes, seem very compatible...and we will meet once I return to Sydney. Now I am getting quite a few guys sending me messages etc via Gaydar who would like to meet me...and I am not averse to meeting them...The question (yes, I am getting to it) is...these other guys seem great too, and I would love to meet them (and possible shag them) however if the first guy works I "settling down" too quickly? Given my relative inexperience, should I shag for a few months, or if I meet someone who appears to be Mr Right tomorrow, just stick with him and hang the getting of experience?

So, what should I be looking for, given my relative inexperience? Relationship? or Sex?


Saturday, October 28, 2006

Bohemian Rhapsody...

Well, it's been a while...but that's the challenge of travel...getting online long enough to submit a blog.

My continual development as a gay man continued in Prague...first impressions, horrible city. That lasted for a night...the first night. The second night, armed with my new found confidence from my Berlin experience, I rocked up to a bar/cafe that had been recommended by a friend. Dead quiet, it was about 8.30 at night. In one corner, a nice looking guy was nursing a drink. In another booth, a girl and two guys talking. Cluster of 3 guys talking to the bartender at one end of the bar. Otherwise, empty! GREAT!

"I'm here, so I may as well buy a beer and make the best of it". Beer purchased, perched myself on a stool facing the nice guy in the corner. Brief eye contact, nothing significant (I've learned that eye contact seems to be important when picking up a strange guy in a bar). hmmmm. Beer no. 1 gone, purchased beer no. 2. Another guy walked in, bought a beer and sat down at the next table. OK looking, and looking at me...significantly. hmmmm. What do you do, go with what seems to be a sure thing? Or wait for something else? Being just a little fussy, I went with waiting! I keep attempting to make eye contact with the first guy in the corner, a bit more successfully, but not enough to be sure! "OK", I think, "I'll buy another beer (no. 3) and instead of sitting on my stool, I'll sit down near him and attempt a hello or something". Good plan! Buy beer no. 3 and...sit back down in my stool! doh! Couldn't bring myself to do it! So much for new found confidence! The guy has finished his drink, collects his jacket and gets up! "FUCK!" The only nice looking guy here and he's leaving! My heart sank! As he walks past me, he pauses, and says "Thought I'd ditch the shyness and say hello to you. I hope you speak English!" Wahoooo! I invited him to sit down and we started chatting...his name is Mike, from Oregon in the USA. Getting into a conversation with him, I'm thinking things are going swimmingly! Then, another guy comes to the table and says "I heard you guys speaking English, mind if I join you?"...'Bugger off' is my first thought, but of course, we acceed to his request. He's from Sydney, Owen, and wanting to know if we've been to any of the clubs yet...he's heard about some but not sure etc, and he's by himself so he's a bit nervous. Neither of us had, me only having arrived the day before and Mike only having flown in that day! More desultory conversation, mostly from Owen. By this time, my hand is on Mike's leg and he's not fact, he's caressing my hand! Bingo! Now, to get rid of the annoying Owen!

Thankfully, he goes to the men's room, and Mike says "I would love to see Charles Bridge at night, wanna come?" 'You betcha baby!!!' I think to myself, and agree very calmly, nonchalently even! Owen comes back, and I think by this stage, he's getting the vibes from us that he was the third he says he's going to check out the clubs and he's off! Wahooo!

Mike and I did actually stroll along Charles Bridge, lovely at night, but still full of tourists and street vendors. Nice stroll however. We walk back, in the direction of Mike's hotel, he invites me up. And it's on for young and old! Sexy man, incredibly well hung! And a tongue that goes everywhere! I stayed the night, needless to say, and we didn't sleep that much!

Woke up in the morning and he invited me to stay for the next couple of days with him in the hotel...he'd won this holiday for two and of course, there's only him on the holiday, but with accommodation for two. I had to check out of my hotel that day anyway, and so I moved in. Can't believe that I had met him the previous night and already agreeing to move in with him...that's the speed of gay relationships isn't it!!!

We spent three wonderful days in Prague, exploring the city together, trying out the food, going to classical concerts and having some incredible sex! The last night, we had a bath together where I fucked him for the first time. We dried off and went to bed where I fucked him for the second time! Neither of us wanted the night to end, as he was leaving for Switzerland the following day. So we stayed up talking all night (well, almost all the night, I did fuck him a third time which kinda halted the conversation temporarily), eventually falling asleep about 6am.

It was a wonderful time in Prague, spent with a lovely, funny and very chatty American...the nicest American I know! It was really hard to say goodbye, I was quite attached to him. He was loathe to go too! But we both had our holidays planned and booked and so onward we must go. Next stop for me was Budapest, via Bratislava.

What did I learn from this episode?
1. That there are nice Americans, who aren't necessarily loud and obnoxious!
2. That I can rim a guy
3. I'm not too bad at fucking guys
4. That I am finding that I am becoming emotionally involved with these guys very quickly and very deeply! This was alarming for me, who was kept his emotions under very strict control, particularly over the past 7 years or so since I've known definitely that I was gay. Suddenly, now that I've acknowledged my sexual preference, I'm letting my emotions flow freely and it's a bit scary!
5. That Dating Guy once again proves himself an invaluable support for this seemingly emotionally all-over-the-place blogger! DG is truly an amazing man, finding time and energy to deal with my issues whilst dealing with some of his own...and coming out on top! Legend!

Monday, October 23, 2006

My First Post...Why Am I Doing This?

Well, I suppose it was inevitable that I start up my own blog...can't keep harassing Dating Guy with my interminable rantings - despite his protestations, I am sure that even he has limits to his patience and understanding.

If any of you have read his blog, you'll already know something about me...if not, check it out on Dating Guy's very readable blog. Yes, that's me, Monty shagging his way through Eastern Europe! Where do I start?

I'm not going to go way back for the time being...let's just start a bit more recently...late July 2006 when I finally decided it was time to start coming out as a gay man. I have known that I was gay for several years...I had always had an attraction to other guys but always supressed it and lived a very straight life. My older brother, Mark, on the other hand, knew he was gay and so from age 21, lived his life as a gay man. (Before you get too worried, my oldest brother, Steve, is straight, with 3 children, so my parents have their grandkids!) I obviously had a fair bit of contact with Mark, living in Sydney too (Steve and my parents live in Qld) and was bound to come into contact with many of his gay friends. One of his friends, back in 1999, took a fancy to me and to cut a long story short, initiated me! 1 July 1999 to be precise. It's funny, he warned me beforehand, that once I had cock, there was no going back...and how right he was! It still took me another almost exactly 7 years to finally come out and admit it though! We'll get to the process another time!

So, I decided to come out...where to start? I would think that most people would tend to tell their family and close friends first...not I. Started with my friends first, as they would be more directly impacted by this than my family, who are not living in Sydney with me (Mark moved to London last year). I had heard about from one of my clients who was gay, and so decided to log a profile...I had no idea how else to meet other gay guys (apart from walking into an Oxford St pub/club and that was way too daunting at this early stage). Scrolling through the thousands of profiles absolutely floored me...where do you start? Picked a page at random and had a look through the profiles and a pair of gentle brown eyes caught my attention...and so I sent a message...a very clumsy, awkward message if my memory serves me correct! I had no idea what to say, I had never been on any sort of personals website before in my life! Well, knock me down with a feather when the guy responded..."who?" you might ask...yes, you got it...Dating Guy!

I still cannot believe that of all the guys on that site, DG was the one that I stumbled across! And I have not found a nicer guy than DG, nor more supportive and caring than he. As he mentions in his blog, we met a couple of times and have conversed fairly extensively since then, which I will be eternally grateful for.

I had decided to go overseas this year, to see my brother Mark and so I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to come out to him, in person, in London! This I did 29 September 2006. Mark was surprised, but not shocked. What did shock him was when I told him that it was Andy, his friend, who had initiated me! You see, Andy and Mark had a brief fling in the early nineties, a fact that Andy conveniently forgot to tell me at the time! So Mark was a little understandably angry, more at Andy than me. But he hasn't talked to Andy for years now, so I doubt it will have any real impact on the grand scheme of things. But Mark has been really supportive, has given me much older-brotherly advice which has been great. It has been good, Mark has been in three long term relationships, the last one being for 9 years which ended when he moved to London. So, between him, with his advice on relationship building, and DG's advice on, yes, the Dating scene, I have received a pretty rounded crash course in being gay!

The other part of my overseas holiday was to Eastern Europe, mainly because I haven't been here before and always wanted to see it. I decided to go solo on this leg of the trip, as a personal challenge! I have always relied on others when it comes to meeting new people, and I really wanted to see if I could do this myself. So, that, combined with my newly 'out' status, meant that I was now determined to meet some gay guys (and yes, hook up too) whilst travelling.

And so I found myself one Tuesday night two weeks ago, in the middle of Berlin's gay district (well, one of them), outside a gay bar. I had already walked around the block, and up and down the street and knew I had to take that next step. Quick text message to DG for support, and then I went in!

Freaking out, I walked around the bar, ordered a beer, and took it outside to the tables there, with the few brave smokers who could handle the bitterly cold weather. I could then sit there in relative quiet, drink my beer, watch what was happening inside without the immediate threat of having to speak with anyone, and shiver! One beer gone, and my toes about to fall off from frost bite, I thought, "fuck this, I'm going to really do it"....went inside, found a stool at the crowded bar, and ordered another beer! And then realized that everyone is, of course, speaking German! "How the hell do I start a conversation with a guy when I can't even speak the lingo???" Thankfully, Kylie came on, a reassuringly familiar sound in a very alien world! A cute guy sat down across the bar from me, appeared to be alone. I smiled at him, he smiled at me. "What do I do now?" A smile will get you so far, but for conversation to be had, a mutual language was required. Another beer! After 3 beers, and no dinner, I was finally past caring! Walked up behind him, and froze! Panic stations! And then, the three beers took over and I took the decicive step and sat down next to him! He smiled and shook my hand. "Sprechen Sie English?" I asked. "My name is Oscar" he said. He was French, but had excellent English! The rest, as they say, is history! We spent 3 days and nights together in Berlin, 3 unforgetable nights! We sadly parted ways, he back to Paris, and me onwards to Prague to continue my holiday.

We were only talking today and I realized that he has been my longest gay relationship...3 days!!! That's the next challenge for me, to have a relationship that lasts longer than 3 days...preferably with someone who lives in the same city, let alone same continent as me!