Brandon & Juan
February. An ordinary, Spanish winter.
Brandon, a freshman in the world of business, set off in the morning on a duty trip to Barcelona.
He was enjoying it, he had always loved to travel.
That’s why, among others, he had decided to set up a company dealing with export of whisky. He knew he was going to live out of a suitcase.
Last months were for him a time to get to know new and completely unknown world. They were related to a thorough revaluation of his life.
A year ago, in Rotterdam, he entered one of the sex shops by curiosity.
While entering this temple of lust he was still a heterosexual man, successful with many women.
He left the shop shocked/in shock. He was gay.
Already in his schooldays, when he used to play in his rugby team, he noticed that he was paying attention to his mates’ bodies. Despite that fact, he had never expected that a sight of men could be exciting for him in a definitely sexual way.
He was a self-confident boy, always surrounded by girls. He liked women, he adored making love to them.
He wasn’t expecting that it was only a substitute of pleasure for him.
He learned about it only at the age of 26, when for the first time, after a visit to the Rotterdam sex shop, he decided to try to experience the pleasure with another man.
The acceptance of a new reality, a new self, was definitely the most difficult task in the whole life for him.
Hadn’t he laugh, along with his colleagues, at those effeminate fags? He himself had insulted more that one gay. He simply couldn’t be one of them!
He tried to prove to himself that nothing had changed. He still could have sex with women. Not one, but dozens!
Over the next few months after coming back from Rotterdam he led a promiscuous life, proving himself that this one night spent in bed with a man was just an experiment.
An ordinary experiment, completely understandable in the period of adolescence, of learning about your body and opening up to your own sexuality.
On February 19, standing at the London airport and waiting for the Barcelona plane, he still couldn’t accept the event from almost a year ago that had changed his perception of the world. Of his world.
Barcelona captivated him by its beauty.
On the second day of his stay in this wonderful city he met a charming, funny, fiendishly intelligent student of architecture. In the evening, Brandon was sitting in one of the bars near the hotel where he stopped. He was alone. At a certain moment Juan approached him. He asked for a lighter. They began to talk.
The conversation lasted until morning.
They spent together the following days walking around Barcelona. Juan told Brandon everything he had learned about his town. He showed him the city unknown to tourists.
Every day they were getting to know each other better. They were becoming close. Friendship, the foundation of their future relationship, was slowly being formed between them. On the last day of Brandon’s stay in Barcelona, they went to the most exclusive restaurant. They had a great time laughing endlessly. They didn’t say goodbye after the dinner. The meal finished, without a word of explanation, they headed to Brandon’s hotel. Any unnecessary conversations were useless. The desire they were both feeling, meeting every day, has finally found its outlet.
It was the most beautiful night, for both Brandon and Juan.
Juan, accepting from the start his sexual orientation, could not believe how lucky he was, one night when he was searching for a lighter. He found it in the hands of a man with whom, as it turned out later, he wanted to spend the rest of his life.
The distance that separated them had no relevance.
From the first letter they wrote to each other, from the first confession of love that took place a week after leaving the airport of Barcelona, they wrote to each other hundreds, or perhaps thousands of similar confessions and letters.
They met after a very long three months.
They knew that they were meant to be.
After a year they started living together in London, then moved their shared home to Brighton. Then they moved to Sitges, where the story continues today.
They opened a bar in the building where their first flat was.
Every gay man coming to Sitges should visit Casablanca in the first place.
The bar of Juan and Brandon.
Everyone there feels at home. Special guests can spend their time in the private library of Juan, located on the top floor of the building. At night, you can also listen to perverse short stories by Juan.
After 32 years, Brandon and Juan still form a partner relationship based on friendship. Each decision is made together. They are support and help for each other. They march through life, still remembering that ordinary, Spanish winter 1981.