We had a party in Loughborough week before last weekend at the Charnwood golf course. Of course, I had a post ready to go, but taking my reader’s comments to heart (omg, I have readers!), I thought I’d pepper the post with some pictures. Due to me working at the door, pictures were so out of the question, so I asked people to email me pictures. Instead, they sent me links to their facebook pages.
This is what I looked like :
(Oh okay, that’s not me, but symbolically, it could have been me. You send me new technology, and I retreat into the sure and secure world of blackboard and chalk. Stable technology, stuff I’m sure about, everything else be damned).
So, yes, party.
The scene of the crime? Charnwood Golf Course just outside of Loughborough (shout out if you’ve been there. Say yeah!). For under £10, you had access to two dance floors, a free dance lesson (inclusive), and a Bachata show around midnight, the witching hour.
For an additional £4, you had the choice of a meal (between pork belly and chicken) with rice and peas and lashings of vegetables. I heard it was good. Like, people starving themselves for the entire day to come and eat in the evening, just to get it good. It worked too well, because by the time I got around asking for some food, it was all gone. A shocking business, that. Next time, I shall come prepared! Cereal bars for everyone!
The surroundings were fantastic. Imagine this: a summer’s evening. You know one of those summer evenings, where the sun has gone down, but still leaving enough warmth with enough of a breeze so it isn’t too balmy. In front of you, there’s the undulating expanse of the green, and its too dark to play golf, but light enough to enjoy the fact that there’s a golf course, with its colourful flags as markers to this night. Because you know, it shall be fun.
People arrive, all in their finery and clouds of perfume, and laughter. At these parties, there’s a lot of laughing. Like, different types of mirth. You know just as how Eskimos have over 100 different words for snow, well, there’s just as much for laughter at these parties. People guffaw with delight at seeing each other. Women giggle like twelve year olds when complimented on their dresses. The knowing glissando between couples as they are separated and smashed together throughout the night, like a sort of – Latin Big Bang. There’s the squeal of seeing someone for the first time in a long time (along with jumpy claps), and the chuckle at a new joke, or perhaps an old one.
By this time, the lesson is done and the party is in full swing: Bachata on the outside, and Salsa on the inside. Either way, people were moving and keeping their beats to time. One, two, three. Five, six, seven. Fun is had, new couples are born. A leader offers his hand, a mute question of, “Shall we dance?” and the follower looks him up, and down. Touches her finger to her chin, nods her assent, and they flow onto the floor. Their steps keeping in tune, the leader guiding his woman (at this point in time, she’s his woman) into various steps seguing into spins and routines. For the next five minutes, there’s the whirl of courtship, the flirtation of something to be, or perhaps not.
The dance has ended, an experience lived, and when the next song is fired up, the courtship begins anew.
That’s what these salsa parties are like, and this is why people pretty much show up at everyone of them. When you dance, it’s not only just doing exercise or whatever homilies of health people tend to witter on about, it’s the fact at that moment in time, you’re ageless and attractive, and you just be.
Somehow, such moments of intimacy posted on facebook and being sent the impersonal link pretty much makes me clutch my pearls in horror, and I turn to the blackboard and chalk (ably modelled by Amanda in this shot. Thanks, Amanda!), because the world is so cold, and much too with us.
Oh, well, we can still dance.
See you at the next party, yes?
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