May 2000

Before reading the following story you should know that in Iceland there is no real gay scene: there are 2 clubs/bars, but they are also heavily frequented by str8 people, and some cruising places. Gay people in Iceland are in general accepted, can marry and easily walk hand in hand on the street in daylight or at night. Spotlight is one of the 2 clubs, normally you have to be 20 to enter any club in Reykjavik but on Thursday you can enter Spotlight from age 18.

L. is from Belgium.

Y and A are from China.

They are all str8.

I’m an exchange student, a gay one at that and one of the only ones that I know that where/are openly gay during and prior of the exchange year. The weekend that I’m talking about I found out about 2 others who are gay/bisexual but did not tell it before coming to Iceland. I’ve cursed because of a decision I made 18 months ago, but I’ve enjoyed it very much as well. That being openly gay is not evident in all cultures is something I found out last weekend. But some adapt better then others.

We had a weekend with al the exchange students and L. and I thought it would be cool to go to ‘Spotlight’ on Thursday evening. So we asked some people.

L. : Do you want to come to ‘Spotlight’ with us?

Y. : You cannot go there: she’s a girl and you’re a boy. It’s a gay club. You are not gay.

L. : There are also str8 people going there, besides Finne’s a lesbian.

Y. : You’re lying.

L. : No, it’s true.

Y. : You’re making a joke.

L. : No.

Suffice it to say that he didn’t join us. Some time later they continued the conver-sation.

L. : What do you think is the worst part of western culture?

Y. : GAYS.

A. : Stop being so Chinese, it’s perfectly all right to be gay.

We resolved the matter afterwards. Over that weekend a lot of people found out that I was gay, don't ask me how they could still not now after 7 months, and I re-ceived almost no negative comments. Rather the opposite, maybe it's Iceland, but it makes me feel like there's still hope for the world.

bio: I’m an Belgian exchange student currently living in Iceland. I’m 18 years old and I’m in mentaskolin (the school you go to between 16 and 20 in Iceland)

actually, I wrote a whole e-mail to just shamelessly promote my webpage to you : http://www.geocities.com/zipfile

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