1. We happened to go to Orlando yesterday.
  2. We went as part of a group of eleven Universal Studios annual passholders, down for one day at the park.
  3. It's just two and a half hours from my house, we don't even usually spend the night, but we did this time.
  4. Anyway, the second we woke up (on Sunday), we were seeing the news.
  5. Three of our group are gay men, and they shared their memories of Pulse, and their hurt.
  6. Sitting at breakfast, the rest of us were sickened and just trying to be there for them.
  7. Two of these men are married, and in the process of adopting a child from Australia (one is from there). And now they are concerned that some fear of hate crimes will hurt their chances, and our hearts broke for them.
  8. And we were all so angry, and saddened, and hoping we didn't know anyone harmed.
  9. Then I got a text message from Facebook.
  10. Immediately, I was annoyed. Why would I want to post that I'm okay?
  11. "Hey! I'm in Orlando, several miles from where anything bad happened, but don't worry!"
  12. ?
  13. "Hey, guys, I know you're all shocked about these innocent victims, but I'm fine!"
  14. Right?
  15. "Hey everybody, no one asked, but look at me!"
  16. No, Facebook, I won't be chiming in.
  17. But then I realized, with some dread, that I actually never told anyone I was going to Orlando in the first place.
  18. Other than my fiancé, and the other nine people we were with, one would only know I was in Orlando from snapchat, where I have exactly six followers.
  19. Two of those six snapchat followers are related to me, but they never looked at my snap story (I checked).
  20. Another of those six snapchat followers is my fiancé.
  21. My fiancé didn't tell anyone he was going either.
  22. Any of my friends might have told their families that THEY were going to Orlando, but they wouldn't have mentioned me or Jason.
  23. It's just that normal that we go down there. A typical Saturday.
  24. A funny thing happens when you go to a theme park— you start the day ready to conquer.
  25. We, by which I mean all eleven of us, are going to ride every ride together.
  26. We will see every show, and eat all of the trashy food.
  27. Yes, we are going to experience everything that this park (and its sister park) has to offer.
  28. We know all of these park's secrets, and we are so much better than the tourists.
  29. And then we will go out and get shit-faced because we are theme park rock stars.
  30. That's the expectation.
  31. And then the reality:
  32. Those of us who have no qualms with overpaying for beer, will wait in a beer line every thirty minutes while the others (i.e. Yours truly) waste away in the sun.
  33. Every twenty yards when we pass a restroom, we will all need to stop so that one person out of eleven may use it.
  34. We will get so very sick of standing on our feet because we are all over thirty and, though most of us were born and raised here, we can't take the heat.
  35. We ride five rides total, then happily hole ourselves up in our hotel rooms behind our DND signs and sleep, dehydrated and un-showered, like infants.
  36. And today I am grateful for the reality.
  37. At 10:00 am on Saturday morning, we were adamant that we were going out that night.
  38. If not for exhaustion, we would have only needed one of those three men to recommend a fun bar that they were familiar with where we could go to dance.
  39. One where they felt safe and accepted.
  40. One which, let's face it, would have the best dance music.
  41. My and Jason's families would have never thought of us while they watched the news.
  42. Yes, Facebook. I'm safe. I'm an idiot. Thanks.