I just returned from being in Sapporo all weekend. Mainly, I went to participate in the parade and festivities associated with Sapporo's gay pride celebration.
I had soooooo much fun. I had no idea there were so many gay people in Sapporo or that the community would turn out to celebrate with such positive attitudes. Usually, in the states, while gay pride is really fun, you also have to contend with protesters on the sidelines or busting through shouting and being real party poopers.
But since Japan is not a hugely religious country and because people are generally well-behaved, there was none of that. We marched for like an hour and a half all the way from Nakajima-koen (Nakajima Park) through Susukino and back again. The police were there in full force and the people we passed were really awesome.
There was both a pre-party the Saturday before the march and two major after-parties Sunday night. Kae's bar, Bar Orb, also turned one year old on Sunday so there was lots of partying happening at her place too. The bar was packed out! And so many customers came and paid Kae homage. It was amazing.
Too bad I won't be here next year to enjoy it again, but I'm sure when I come back to visit Hokkaido, the Rainbow March will be one of the reasons I do.