On Thursday, I went to group class and the party. The joint was jumping as they say. We had a roughly equal mix of men and women so if I needed to sit out a song or two, it didn’t create an imbalance in the force. We had several newcomers (mostly couples) who stuck around and braved the party as well as what is becoming the new crowd of regulars.
I’m finding that the harder I work towards improving my dancing, the more I need to mix in social dancing. On lessons it is all about focusing on the bits and pieces. Keep my frame solid, work on the timing, use my body more to lead and don’t forget the arms! No dead arms allowed here! All while also trying to remember the various patterns and checking my alignments to try and keep from getting trapped in a corner. It overloads the brain a bit.
Which is not to say that all of that goes out the window at party but the focus is completely different. On a crowded floor, I do spend a lot of time checking my surroundings and tossing in a hesitation or two to avoid collisions. But it really just about relaxing and enjoying the dance and the music.
At some point, I was standing on the side talking with another guy and he said two things that stuck with me. The first was a comment about the energy in the studio and he was so right. A crowded dance floor creates a set of problems but it also generates a lot of positive energy as everyone dances and has fun.
Then he just mentioned his COVID booster. I filed it away but I think back to last winter when parties first started up. Everyone was masked. There was hand sanitizer everywhere and we all ran to it between partners. Yes, it was dancing but there was a whole different vibe.
It was really like we had gone back in time before we knew about the virus. This wasn’t the first party like this but it was kind of the first time I had really thought about the differences and how far we’ve come from last year which now seems like a lifetime ago. Like back in the Dark Ages. I suppose if that guy hadn’t mentioned his booster, I wouldn’t have thought about it at all.