Do I have the energy and optimism to get ready and cross the bridge into Ybor City this beautiful spring night? Probably not, my future ex-husband isn’t likely to be there anyway 😦 Instead I’ll probably just curl up on the couch with my true loves, Cricket and Squeak.
I live on Central Ave. in St. Petersburg. St. Pete is actually the 4th largest city in Florida, between Tampa and Orlando. You can’t tell that from the queer nightlife. There is really only one gay club here, Georgie’s, and it’s very 1990’s. I can walk to Georgie’s from my apartment, and have a few times, but it’s just not cute. The problem with venturing into Ybor is that I have to be drunk/tipsy to deal with the ugliness, and then I’m faced with drunk driving over the bridge at 3 a.m. or hooking up with some random vodka-goggles dude…that ain’t cool, man.
Ybor City Chamber of Commerce description:
“Known as Tampa’s Latin Quarter for over a century, Ybor City is an exotic blend of aromas, flavors, sights and sounds. From the scent of roasting Cuban coffee early in the morning to the rhythms of Latin music late into the night, Ybor is a feast for the senses.
Choose from a variety of cuisine – Spanish, Cuban, Italian, Greek and French – just by strolling down La Setima, the main street of the Historic District. Share authentic tapas and a pitcher of Spanish sangria in a café atmosphere reminiscent of a Mediterranean village.
Browse eclectic shops and art galleries or visit one of the museums. See a “hand-rolled cigar” being made or just relax and “people watch” with a cup of Ybor’s famous cafe con leche.
Listen to the music of the night – jazz, blues, salsa, reggae and even hip-hop emanate from a selection of pubs, patio bars and nightclubs. Ybor is alive with a variety of entertainment that makes it one of Florida’s top-ranked nightspots.
Founded by Vicente Martinez-Ybor as a cigar-manufacturing center, Ybor City today is one of only two National Historic Landmark Districts in Florida. Red brick buildings, wrought iron balconies and narrow brick streets give it an old-world charm that is a refreshing change of pace from the beach and the mall.”
Oh it’s an exotic blend of aromas all right. Having lived in New Orleans, I can say Ybor ain’t no French Quarter. It is fairly dirty and sleazy and dangerous, in parts, but that old Nawlins magic ain’t happenin.’ Oh jeez, maybe I’ll get on the interwebs and find a husband on daddyhunt or silverdaddies 🙂 (JK)
JK: just kidding for older folks