Monday, September 17, 2007

Southern Comfort 2007

Whew!! It's over, and I feel like I'm in a period of detox. I'll have more substantial material about SCC 2007 at some point, but suffice to say it is truly a climb to the mountaintop where I can breathe the rarified air of the essence of the transgender community. Unfortunately you do have to come down at some point, but at least I can bottle some of that air to carry me through the real world. Being around an estimated one thousand of your sisters and brothers and especially working with some of the best in the community is truly an experience beyond words.

Here is part of what I wrote in the Kappa Beta Yahoo Group:

It was also my pleasure to work along side Kari and Marilyn as volunteers at SCC even though we were in different departments. My body and mind are still recovering from what is always a life changing week. This week was a big longer as I arrived on Tuesday, worked Wednesday in drab setting up the ballroom, and then spent the next three days en femme as part as the tech crew. As a volunteer, you truly understand that things don't just happen on their own. It requires so much work and planning from a tremendous group of talented and dedicated people to make the conference "just happen."

I was very honored to be part of that group, and it was made even better because I worked as the real me. The wonderful ladies who make up the tech crew were gentle with this newbie as they showed me where to put that wrench, tighten that screw, and move that light. Hopefully I held up my end with some good camera work. The play Saturday night in particular allowed the video crew to shine with some nice close-ups that most in the audience would have missed without the big screens.

Of course, it is always nice to see the old friends and make new ones. I was constantly apologizing for cutting off conversations to hurry to the next tech setup. I renewed acquaintances with at least two people who have known me since the "beginning", i.e. the time in internet chat before Kappa Beta. I also met one young woman named Millie who was at SCC three days. I asked, "Oh, your first Southern Comfort?" "No," she replied. "My first three days out period."

That is the magic of SCC. It is expensive, but it is worth saving up for. I'm already planning for 2008.

It is an emotional experience especially with my volunteer efforts. I now know just a little of what it takes to put such a conference together. Thank you does not seem to be near enough to both the organizers and the attendees. That is part of why I feel moved to continue to give back.

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