We love to explore the world, especially the lesbian world! This month we are taking you to a tour in Los Angeles, California. Let’s see how life is in the ‘gay capital of the world’ through Vanessa’s eyes!
Hi Vanessa, can you please introduce yourself?
My name is Vanessa Paige, a thirty-year-old lesbian from Los Angeles, California. I was born and raised in America and spent the majority of my life in LA. Currently, I am living in Budapest, Hungary for a little more than four years now. I have been working at a wonderful company as a client support representative. I enjoy it and it is LGBTQ+ friendly.
I like to spend my free time at the gym, stay at home cooking and painting, and spending the majority of my time with my amazing friends. They are like family. We hold a lot of events, such as open mic nights, comedy nights, and recently opened a bar.
Now let us talk a bit about the United States. and California specifically. How was it to live there as an LGBTQ+ person?
In America, the LGBTQ+ scene varies across the country. I am fortunate enough to have grown up and lived in LA, close to West Hollywood, one of the gayest cities in America or the world for that matter! As a lesbian, I enjoyed a lot because there were nightclubs made especially for lesbians and not just gays which is normally the case. Los Angeles is very accepting and visibility is not an issue. I felt very comfortable being out and living in a city where it is accepted.
Same-sex marriage is very common in California and there are plenty of same-sex couples with families of their own. Such a beautiful sight in my opinion. In LA there are many LGBTQ+ support centers for those whose family do not accept their children's sexuality or for those who do not know their sexuality and even those who are still afraid to come out and need encouragement from others coming out stories. It is a heaven for the LGBTQ+ community.
That sounds amazing! What’s your best memory of Los Angeles?
Pride in LA is like nothing else! It is truly one of the best LGBTQ+ experiences I have ever felt. It is one of the biggest parades in the states and possibly the world! The parade is full of decorated floats, trans, drag queens, gays, lesbians, queers, heterosexuals, everyone is there for LOVE! And it is beautiful. All the bars along the streets of West Hollywood throw pride parties and let's just say you can get quite wasted at the end of the march. Everyone is happy and united like the world should be. If anyone gets the opportunity to attend this pride march, I promise you it will be an event you will never forget.
Can you please tell us some details about how social life is in LA?
Every company and school in Los Angeles is LGBTQ+ friendly and supports the community with fundraisers and events. Lesbian social life is amazing in LA. So many lesbian clubs, parties, and it's very easy to find other lesbians even at cafes if you're not into the night scene. There is no need for dating applications or Facebook groups to find fellow lesbians because you can easily find them on the street, your local grocery store, coffee shop, etc. I prefer it since I am an old school romantic.
How do you see the situation in Hungary?
Honestly, when I moved here I was terrified. I had no idea how lesbians were treated here in Budapest because, in America, Central Eastern Europe is viewed as non-accepting to the LGBTQ+ community. When I first moved here I have dated girls who were too afraid to even hold my hand in public! Such a shock after living in Los Angeles. Although I have also dated some girls who are more confident with their sexuality and didn’t care what others think (as it should be). I must say though; Budapest is improving quite a bit.
Recently most of my time has been put towards a new Facebook group I have created with two of my friends. It’s called Queer Expats and Locals in Budapest. With this group, I am devoting my time to bring the LGBTQ+ expats group together, organize parties, and make others feel welcome and safe. Everyone from around the world who moves here can meet up with us and we can show them great clubs, events, and just get to know each other. So far it has been a great success!