Metro Manila Pride March 2016

On June 25,2016 Manila celebrated its 22nd Pride March with 3,000 plus participants. It was my first time to attend LGBTQIA+ Pride March, I was so nervous because there would be medias, paparazzi, homophobes anywhere during the march. But when I arrived with my friend (now my girlfriend lels) it’s the first time I’ve felt that I’m home. That everybody around is friendly even if we do not know them. Nobody is going to discriminate whoever you are, whatever your race is or even if you’re a dog (I love how the owners brought their dogs with them wearing rainbow flag or with placards).
There were booths selling merchandises like pins, rainbow flag, and shirts. The march started around 4pm in Luneta. During the march there’s this guy who keeps shouting about we gays and lesbians are going to hell haha we ignore him because he’s all by himself. Some answered him back (or should I say burned him with sarcasm) I’ve never felt so safe before until this Pride event. Everyone even the motorists, commuters around us supported us on that day, some didn’t know what was happening but all I care that day was I’m holding this girl’s sweaty palm and thought about not wanting to end that day.
It has the largest participants so far I think, but hoping that this 2017 Pride March would be safer and more LGBTQIA+ will attend. (I can’t wait ugh)
The most colorful place I’ve ever seen! I HATE crowds but this is the only one I didn’t feel like leaving. I didn’t feel the need to hide in a corner. Everyone was happy and everyone looked at each other as if they were expecting them. Everyone sang and danced as loud as they want.
It was exciting to see thousands of gays in one place. Often, we see them very rarely on the streets and contain the urge to ask them if they’re part of the “fam”. I think each one of us felt love for everyone else on that day. We saw stories of hatred and disowning and discrimination and lots and lots of unrequited love in one another’s eyes and replied with a smile.
It was our Cinderella moment. The national park became a fairytale party. We could dress up as we wanted. We could kiss our forbidden lover. The clock struck too early at 9. The program ended. Every colorful thing and person had to go home. As Heidi and I left the park, we heard something we’ll never forget from two men holding each other:
“Sana tumigil yung oras.”

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