Monday, July 19, 2021

Summer of ’84

Summer of ’84, the ARRL sent me to Metairie, Louisiana, to speak at a ham radio convention. My wife came along, not to hear me speak, but to visit the world’s fair, which was next door in New Orleans. 

After the convention, we spent one day at the fair and another day seeing the sights in New Orleans. After walking around the French Quarter for a few hours, we rested our derrieres on a park bench in Jackson Square. And what to my wandering eyes should appear, but two femulators walking side-by-side through the park. They were dressed in “office girl drag,” that is, skirt suits and high heels with wigs and full makeup. 

Their presentations were convincing, but seemed out of place on that very hot and very humid summer day in the city of New Orleans. In retrospect, they were probably like so many of us – dressed to kill for that one day out en femme that they had been planning for weeks – the weather be damned.

I mention this sighting because it was the first time I had ever seen femulators out and about among the civilians. Until then, the only femulators I had seen were in books, magazines, films and television shows – never in the flesh.

Needless to say, I was impressed and a little jealous. My four public forays en femme were under the protection of Halloween. I never dreamed I would femulate in public on a day that didn’t close out the month of October. Yet, a few years later, I attended my first support group meeting en femme (see photo) and the rest is herstory.

Source: SheIn
Wearing SheIn

John D. Collins and Nicholas Frankau
John D. Collins and Nicholas Frankau femulating on British televison’s ’Allo ’Allo.


  1. "....British televison’s ’Allo ’Allo..."

    Eet eez zeh Breetish hairmen. 😉 Which one has the Fallen Madonna with them? 🙂

  2. I have had a few "weather be damned" outings. When you only get so many chances to go out, you have to take the girdle by the garters and forge ahead.
    Also - I LOVE "Allo Allo"! In any British comedy you can always count on some drag now and then.

  3. The young Stana OMG so pretty!

  4. 'Allo 'Allo. There's a wonderful show I haven't thought of in ages!! I may need to search out some episodes online:)

  5. AnonymousJuly 19, 2021

    Hi Stana. There are a lot of photos of mock homecoming on Facebook that no one has picked up. Although lately they've come down in numbers, few stand out

  6. Maybe those femulators were in business attire because they were going to/leaving work. Maybe they stepped out for lunch. It's not all that unusual to see femulators, drag Queens and transwomen out and about in The Quarter, downtown or nearby Faubourg-Marignay. My first forays into New Orleans were for JazzFest, so my focus was elsewhere. But my third (of many) visit to The Crescent City was just to wander about.

    New Orleans is a walking-around city. There's so much to see, you don't want to miss anything by zipping around in a vehicle. Spending time around Vieux Carre it's not unusual to see anything. I've seen plenty of drag Queens in the daylight and out-of-town fenulators, along with a number of local t-ladies. Too hot to be all dressed up? Not if you're dressed for work. The locals long ago adapted to the palpable humidity, and as a friend told me, "We don't walk around New Orleans, we saunter". The pace is slow down there.

    I have mobility problems, which have kept me away from New Orleans for far too long. But every other trip I took, I went on the guided tour of The Quarter. There's always a different tour guide and there's no script. Every guide showed me two or three things I didn't know. On my second tour there was a femulator with her partner. On a later tour, I gave up my slot to be included with a later group of many out-of-town femulators. What a city. I really miss it.

  7. Whenever I have visited New Orleans I have been on the run. The only thing I know is the French Quarter but every trip was a memorable experience. On each of these trips I had the pleasure of observing femulators leisurely strolling through the area. Who knows if the next time I visit New Orleans I will arm myself with courage and join the group of femulators as well.

  8. Stanna. My, haven't you come long way!

  9. I know this is off topic for this thread, but seeing the year 1984 in print sparked a reaction in me. It was the year I first told two close female friends I was trans, both promising me that they would not tell anyone. One did and soon so many others knew. I immediately lost some friends over it, but whatevs. The second was a friend who I introduced to a close male friend and I was best man in their wedding. Shortly after they were married, she confessed her love for me and not her husband and wished she had married me instead. He did find out because she didn't want secrets with her husband, which I respected, but he promptly wanted to have sex with both of us and me as a woman! They were comfortable with me in en femme until their first child turned 3 and I was no longer allowed to visit in my true skin so as not to confuse her.