I just came in from a fun night with the girls. We went to our first Salsa dancing lesson this evening which was fun. It has been awhile since I had a girl’s night out that the sole purpose is just fun and not for a ward related function. Not that I resent the latter, it’s just that when I am out with ward colleagues, I am automatically the senior sister, even if I try to shrug off my mantle of responsibility. Let’s face it, much as we all like to pretend that during the ward night out, I am just Diane, at the back of everybody’s mind, including mine, I am still Sister Diane, who will have to call members of staff every now and then into my office for a serious talk. It would be hard to take one seriously if one was inebriated the previous night and danced on top of the table. Anyway, I am yet again digressing from what I want to talk about.
So Salsa dancing… I don’t know who suggested it first but the three of us agreed to go dancing one of these nights. So I went on the internet to check where there is Salsa dancing in Kingston-upon-Thames. I found one on the internet which my friend and I decided to have a look at one night but it was not to my liking. Fortunately, we found one place offering Salsa dancing on Friday nights too.
So tonight we finally went. I don’t have too much expectations except to have fun and sweat it out a little bit. I wasn’t overly worried about making a fool of myself because fortunately I do not have two left feet though not as graceful as my sisters. I came prepared, extra top in case I sweat too much, wet wipes to freshen up later, and flat shoes in case my feet hurt from my boots.
So we joined the beginners group and obviously we started with the basic steps. Our instructor said that the number one is always the right leg, number five is always the left leg and if we know how to count one to eight then we should be alright. Sounds elementary and easy right? Wrong…suddenly I forget where four is supposed to land…oh yeah, it’s a pause not a step. I was concentrating on my feet so much that my hips forget that they can actually move. My friends and I were actually laughing at ourselves. None of us are hopeless dancers but we took time in perfecting the ‘shine’ steps… I could easily tangle my legs together and land on my face. Oh and don’t get me started on the kick and the hop…seriously, who remembers that after the hop, it’s supposed to count five and weight should be on the left leg? Oh, I am good in theory. I answered correctly the instructor’s question’s regarding where the weight should be on what count…it’s the actual performance that has me scratching my head. But we just laugh it off and after several repetitions. my feet almost got the hang of it apart from the last four steps. Our instructor demonstrated the use of the arms and hands and we must have been looking with our jaws dropped to the floor. It was poetry in motion and from where we were standing, virtually almost impossible to emulate. But at least it’s the carrot that would make us come back for more instructions.
One, two, three… just like Salsa dancing, living must start at the basics. I know that we can sometimes get impatient and just want to see the end result. We could actually be smug and think that we know it all and skip some steps to get to the end sooner rather than later. But if we skip some steps, we would not fall in step with the rhythm and may actually end up on the wrong foot at the end. I guess life is really a learning process and it has to be experienced to actually live it. Whilst it may be well and good to learn on how to live life from books and movies, it’s a different thing to actually be out there and experiencing it. We may falter with some steps, have to do several repetitions in order to get the lessons right and start from the bottom but the lesson will hopefully be learned. Our instructor actually told us not to look at our neighbor for the next step but to concentrate on our own feet. This is a good instruction on life as well… we can only improve our own lives and looking at other persons’ lives can only lead to envy and even learning the wrong thing.
I know that I am perhaps over thinking things again by relating Salsa dancing to life but we have to admit that I do have a point even if you don’t totally agree with me. I blame the cappucino for my wakefulness at this hour. But I like the experience of not taking myself seriously and just be Diane who is amongst friends learning and experiencing the same thing.
So to my three fellow Salsa learners tonight…remember, one is always on the right foot and five is always on the left foot. Here we go…one, two, three…