A couple of weeks ago Hilde had asked me to come to Studio B but it just didn’t work out. This week, she asked again and so we met up there for the group class and party on Friday night.
She normally takes a West Coast Swing group at another studio in town on Friday nights which is why we haven’t met up for a dance date for a long time. Still, it was fun to walk into the studio for a Friday night. She was late so I had started group class with another partner. Fortunately, there were a couple of ladies who are still regulars so it wasn’t as awkward. Hilde showed up about ten minutes in and then jumped into class.
The pattern was a Turkish Towel in Cha-Cha. The Famous Franchise has a version of this but the entry is slightly different. This one we practiced doing a turn out of a back lock step rather than the side step that is more typical of the Cha-Cha. Then, that was the entry in the Turkish Towel. The basic pattern is the same but I think the Famous Franchise just tweaks things slightly to keep their syllabus just that different.
I will admit that the enjoyment I get out of social dancing depends on so many factors including, but not limited to:
- The variety of music and the ease of picking up the beat
- The ability of my partners (more on that later)
- The general vibe of the place
- How soon I become a sweaty mess
I know it makes me sound like a total dance snob but it does matter who I’m dancing with. For me, it is the continuous movement and flow that makes a dance and that typically requires a partner with some skill level but who also doesn’t spend a great deal of time fighting for the lead. I make exceptions for newbies who haven’t learned enough and they are a different category and it can be fun just to do basic steps because there is something fun for me about dancing with someone when it is all still new and exciting. Dancing with instructors is a hit or miss thing. Sometimes, it can be a little intimidating for me since I think they are judging my form and posture all the time.
Anyway, Hilde is a lot of fun. She is high energy in most dances and it can be hard to keep up. But we can glide around the floor in the Waltz and Fox Trot and have a lot of fun with the Swing and Cha-Cha. The music last night was OK. Nothing special but most of the songs had a recognizable beat that was consistent with the dance you wanted to do. I managed to go a little past an hour (with some breaks) before I decided I was too sweaty to continue.
The vibe at that place is a little different. I didn’t feel at all like an outside who didn’t belong which seemed strange to me. The crowd seems to be mostly social so there are a lot of people who just sit at the tables and talk and enjoy the snacks. With many songs, there can be more people on the sidelines than on the floor which seems a bit off.
Bottom line is that it was a good time. It was nice to put some of bad stuff that has been going on aside for a couple of hours and just dance and have fun. I think I’d enjoy social dancing more if more of the parties were like Friday.