P was my friend . We took tutions together . He also supplied me with PentHouse letters and Nancy Fridays . Organic Chemistry, Adolescent age, inquisitiveness and interest towards forbidden things were the common link for friendship . One of those conversations made him break down . He was confused . Did not know what to do . Whom to tell . How to lead his life . How to handle parents , friends and society ? He pretended to be happy but there was an underlying pain . Some friendships come with shelf life . We drifted . Never met him again in last 20 years . But I still remember his despair and pain .

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade blue coloured balloons

Blue was the colour of my sky

We had no conducted tour planned at Zurich and once we reached Bahnhofstrasse we started exploring the city . Colourful clothes , designer shoes and ever smiling people around only added brightness to the otherwise overcast cloudy sky .

While we hanged around trying to decide our next destination the traffic stood still and there was an anticipated excitement in the air amongst people around .

Then they came . Defying all rules , norms and tradition which are mostly laid down by society . They came with a confidence , colour and charisma . This was the first time I was seeing a LGBT parade . The experience was like any first time. You don’t know how to react but get engrossed in the happenings .

Pink coloured balloons at Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade

Pink was the colour

Colour was in abundance . In an otherwise dull overcast day, they sprayed colour in the canvas . Pink , green , yellow , red , purple  were no longer only colours but they represented freedom of expression . They came holding hands with their partners like any other happy couple , like me and my wife . They paused , posed , smiled and kept moving . The message was simple and yet a strong one – marginalization to inclusion .

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade the look of a lonely soul

That look

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade happiness unlimited

Happiness unlimited

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade dance moves of ecstasy

Dance moves of ecstasy

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade looking through the shades

I see the world I want to

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade Rainbow on the shoulders

Rainbow on my shoulders

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade boy with the brightest smile

Brightest smile shining eyes

This continued for about 3o mins . As a photographer I was happy . As tourists we were happy to be a part of the LGBT parade in Zurich . As human beings we had long discussions after this .  On inclusion, on viewpoint, on the situation India . This was 2011 . As on 1st january 2015 there are only 17 countries and certain subnational jurisdictions which allow same sex marriage and its yet not legal in India .

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade dance moves at

Dance moves with expression of freedom

Zurich Bahnhofstrasse LGBT Parade the parade

The Parade

I don’t know where is P now . Hope he is happy and settled in life . Stay good and keep smiling my friend . I promise I will solve all the Organic chemistry equations now without your help .

You can read about our Zurich diaries 1 here – Zurich diaries I – with camera and without plan 

Our other Swiss travelogs are here –

Exploring an Enigmatic matured lady by Lake Geneva – Montreux 

The yodeling festival of Interlaken 

How we loved missing our trains in Engelberg