I met him. My dance instructor. His name is Josef, he’s been a latin and ballroom dance instructor for 40 years. All of his experience and all of his skill didn’t mean he looked down at me – someone who had no idea what a cha cha was compared to a samba. Instead he started talking. For someone who loves trivia, my mind was blown in the first five minutes. Different counts for different dances, origins of words, meaning of dances. It was all too much to remember.
Then he started dancing! My mind went into melt down mode. Steps and counting and hips and arms. Apparently my hands behave like airplane flaps of their own accord. Apparently I can do something I am shown, and forget it two seconds later. Apparently I confuse my right from my left with enough frequency to lose my driver’s licence. But oh my heavenly, was it fun.
Moving to music is something fundamental. We do it reflexively as children and it melts away as the years layer on, buried under self-conscious thoughts and fears. I am not a natural dancer, but I love to learn and I respect creative arts and expression. I’m setting out to learn a 90-second dance. I think along the way I’m also going to learn a thing or two about myself.