Thursday, March 11, 2021

Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale


BY: Erica

A Brief Encounter Leads to a Great Lunch

 I am a long-time crossdresser having ventured out into the everyday world for the first time at the Southern Comfort Conference in Atlanta in 2011. In the ensuing years, Southern Comfort Conference moved to southeast Florida and experienced a new leadership team. Initially, the Florida venue was at the Bonaventure Hotel & Conference Center in Weston located right on the edge of the Everglades. 

Subsequently, the decision was made to move the conference headquarters to the chic Las Olas Boulevard’s Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale. Las Olas Boulevard offers great dining, trendy shopping, vibrant nightlife, and all within walking distance of The Riverside Hotel. Additionally, Southern Comfort Conference provided a schedule of daily seminars covering everything and everything related to transgenderism.

 Better said the seminar array included everything from plain vanilla crossdressing wig selection to being schooled in the ins and outs of gender reassignment surgery. At the 2018 conference, one of the session monitors and also a seminar presenter was none other than our very own Rhonda Williams. 

Just before Rhonda’s presentation, I had the opportunity to introduce myself to her. During our brief conversation, we agreed to get together for lunch sometime in the future. Well, you can probably guess how that luncheon commitment went! Life got in the way and as time marched forward there was another change in the Southern Comfort Conference leadership, the corona virus pandemic launched with a vengeance and we all put “our alter ego” presentations on hold in an attempt to stay safe. And, no luncheon occurred. 

At my very first Southern Comfort Conference in Atlanta, I was able to develop a friendship with the Conference activities director. Over the next decade, we stayed in touch, and when we both received our second vaccination a plan was hatched to let our hair down (actually I have very little hair to “let down”) with a three-night stay at the Riverside on good old Las Olas Boulevard. 

Well the moons lined up, no conflicts emerged and we were off to Fort Lauderdale. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I remembered the luncheon conversation with Rhonda. So, I sent out the Bat-Signal wondering if a response would be forthcoming. Lo and behold the next day Rhonda responded that she would love to get together. 

This past Saturday Rhonda, the Southern Comfort Conference activities director and myself convened at Riverside’s riverfront Boathouse Restaurant. As fate would have it we got the last 3 person table with an unobstructed view of the New River. And WOW!!! Instant chemistry. Three peas from the same pod. 

All with engineering backgrounds, all on Medicare, and all in very nice South Florida Saturday outfits. (National Wear A Dress Day) The two-hour lunch went by too rapidly and reached a hurried conclusion as the skies opened up for a several-hour rain. As we departed each other’s company promises were made to repeat the meetup. Given the adage “The more the merrier!” I will ask Rhonda to make a note on her blog of our next trip to Las Olas Boulevard and maybe some of the blog’s readers will be able to join us. (I will keep you posted)

Or, if you would like to be included in our next soirĂ©e feel free to contact us through Rhonda’s contact page.  

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