In May 2022, our friend and colleague Dennis De Roover travelled for the first time in his life – solo – outside Europe. He set his sights on a road trip in Florida in the United States. He’s so kind to share his story.
After a short stay in Key West I headed back north. Driving all the way to Fort Lauderdale where I stayed at Hyatt Place Fort Lauderdale Airport – South & Cruise Port. My room was gigantic. I never stayed in a hotel room so big. It felt like a suite. I hated how they served breakfast in the lobby instead of in a separate room though.
I brought him some keshek powder and thyme wrapped in vacuum bags. Apparently it’s not easy to find decent ingredients for oriental cooking in Florida.
Especially the keshek bag looked like I was smuggling cocaine into the US. I had declared this food at the customs of Miami International Airport. They greeted me with a smile, took me aside, let me open my bag, had a proper look at it, asked me what it was and trusted me.
My friend was happy with his gift and took me to Rosie’s Bar and Grill in Wilton Manors, the gay destination just north of Fort Lauderdale. The staff was most friendly and the food delicious. We ate grilled chicken with a sauce, wearing black latex gloves to avoid getting sticky fingers. It was the most kinky food experience I had in my life, so far.
The night got even kinkier as me and my friend visited Eagle Wilton Manors, a classic leather gay bar. The place was packed and luckily no strict dress code was enforced that particular night.
Outside the place looked like a garage box, but the inside was much bigger than expected, with two bars, a dance floor with a small stage for go-go dancers, a shop and an outside terrace.
There were people of all ages and even some female visitors, which I have never seen in a European leather gay bar. It was a refreshing take on a leather bar.
But the US doesn’t have a culture of sex in gay bars. It wasn’t my goal that evening anyway. But if you like someone in an American gay bar and you want to have sex, be aware you have to go to your hotel or the apartment of the local.