On Saturday morning I was up bright an early, showered and shaved and made up a little, so I could get myself and my two men to SlutWalkJHB! I also had a cupcake order I had to finish for it to be collected, but that’s besides the point.
At about 9h45, my Glugster, my knucklehead and I climbed into our car along with my sister in law, Peaches- followed by sister C in her car with her baby L and stepdaughter D- and we headed for the Zoo Lake Sports Club. The weather was absolutely perfect for walking in IMHO, but not so great for scantily clad SlutWalkers unfortunately… I suck at estimating numbers, especially when it comes to people, but I think there were about a thousand people? I do wish there had been more, but I think the chilly weather really put a damper on people’s enthusiasm.
There were a whole lot of people we knew who we saw before, during and after the walk- MeeA, Jenty, Louisa, Marieks, Frankie and ExMi to mention a few. And of course I got to see and congratulate the inimitable Sass (you must go and read her speech so that you can hear why she took on Jo’burg SlutWalk, and so that the pictures of her quick-change will make sense) and some of her team and her helpers on pulling off the organising of the Johannesburg SlutWalk- Gina, Nadia and Ernst… At one point I was squealing and hugging and greeting so many people that my Glugster asked if I had invited everyone personally!
I am really glad we didn’t make arrangements to do the walk with anyone, I would have felt really bad for anyone who hung back because they had to keep up with us! We started the walk about 3/4 from the front of the pack, but at one stage I looked behind me and all I saw was a police car! I very quickly told my sister C and my Glugster that we needed to pick up the pace a little! I made two posters for us to carry as we walked:
STOP TEACHING “DON’T GET RAPED” START TEACHING “DON’T RAPE“
1 IN 4 IS NOT A STATISTIC – ITS A CRYING SHAME
I had every intention of taking pictures and Tweeting while we walked, but my darling Glugs and I very quickly knew we were going to do little more than focus on breathing as we walked, never mind chanting slogans and Tweeting! I gave my camera to my knucklehead and I think he did the SlutWalk 3 times with all the running up and down he did! He got some awesome photos though- most of the ones in the gallery at the bottom of this post are his. We made sure we were in comfortable walking shoes because I KNEW there was no way I would make that kind of walk in heels, as tempting as that was. There were guys doing the 3.7km walk in high heels though! It was fascinating to see what people had chosen to wear for the walk, and some of the posters were fanTAStic! I think the oldest SlutWalker was 80-something, and I reckon my baby nephew L was the youngest at 7 weeks old! The atmosphere was electric and you couldn’t help but feel energised by the people around you and the cars making a fuss as they drove past the column of people.
I was very proud to have been a part of something I think is so vitally important in our country- a call to stop blaming the victims of sexual assault- and my first ever protest march!
Brace yourselves bunnies, SlutWalk is going to be HUGE!!
I’ve uploaded photos to Facebook and to Flickr, and there’s a Flickr group where you can see photos from several other people too.
Ooh, and before I forget, through the team that coordinated and planned SlutWalk, I Said No was born. Its a site where victims of assault can tell their stories, anonymously should they choose to do so.