This past weekend I was at a conference in Baltimore. I actually went to college there, got my first real job there, and lots of other big life firsts.
One of those big firsts was discovering the BDSM scene. I joined the Phoenix Society, a local play and education group.
Phoenix was a HUGE part of my life. I used to basically live there on weekends. I threw myself into trying new things with vigor and wild abandon. My first night there, the educational session was about spanking. They needed a demo bottom. I volunteered, and minutes later jumped out of my clothes and onto a stage in front of about 30 people.
They used to call me "slut boy", because I seemed to be up for anything.
After a year or so there, I even volunteered to be their membership chair. And I started to host a munch of sorts for people going to the party at the club on any given Saturday to have dinner together.
I called it the "Pre-Beating Meeting Seating for Eating."
Phoenix is long gone, vanished into the dust of memory. However, the very funky, ageplay friendly restaurant where we held the PBMSFE, that's still there.
It's called the Paper Moon Diner. I took my good friend Moliére there for breakfast on Saturday, because we had an errand nearby to do.
It was like stepping back in time. I remember when the 'moon was brand-new. The same crazy, bohemian vibe is still there. There's a huge collection of pez dispensers on one wall. Toys hang from the ceiling. The place has vegetarian options, and foodie sensibilities.
We ordered our breakfast and when it came it was as good as ever. My brioche French toast came with only one side, but the very best kind: dozens of memories.
I texted my old friend Nullmoniker, who used to go there with me all the time, and we savored the shared memories even as I told some of them to Moliére.
Sometimes I forget that my life is rich with history. It's good to get these reminders.