HRC Gala aftermath

The train ride from Charlotte to Raleigh was a roving gay party, as I wrote earlier this weekend… Tonight, we all hopped back on for the return trip.

It was a much different experience on the way home.

As you might expect, most of the HRC attendees were very, very tired on Sunday afternoon. Two nights of drinking will do that to you! It was also a trip AWAY from the Big Fabulous Weekend, which certainly helped contribute to a subdued mood compared to the excited anticipation of Friday night’s ride.

Gone was the music. There weren’t loud cheers up and down the car. There was limited alcohol consumption. Runway struts down the aisle were minimal.

A lot of people simply slept.

On the other hand, it still turned out to be a fun trip home. We wanted to watch a movie on my laptop, but nobody had portable speakers that would work with it, and it’s built-in speakers were no match for the noise of the train… So we watched WALL-E and a series of Pixar shorts, which don’t really require dialogue anyway.

Perhaps one of the best parts of the ride home were the tired smiles exchanged by everyone as we hauled our luggage off of the train. There were hugs all around, a chorus of “great trip!” and “see you soon!” and so on… While it may have been a pain to have the dinner in another city, it made the trip much more of a bonding experience for those who went.

And of course, we’re already planning the Great Amtrak Takeover of 2011.

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