Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Social Dancing and plans not working out
It was a weekend where things didn't really work out as planned. Not a bad weekend but not how I thought it would be.
Friday night was lovely - I was working from home so, at Rich's suggestion, stuck a sausage casserole in the oven when he got home from work and then headed off to the pub for a few early doors glasses of wine. Mmmmm. I do like that Friday evening drink in the local, just chatting away and planning things and then heading home to a lovely smelling kitchen, crazed hounds and a scrummy meal. So that was a better evening than I'd expected!!
Saturday was a lie-in as Rich usually works but had banked some extra hours to get a weekend off which was nice. But then we had to do chores and we intended to go for a nice walk. Well, after chores the weather intervened and spun from crisp sunshine to gloomy rain. We ended up tramping along in the cold, muddy rain which neither we nor the dogs particularly appreciated. After 40 minutes, we accepted defeat and headed back but that still meant a long cold walk back in wet gear with sulky pooches!
Then came the much heralded Social Dance. You know how things can just "go wrong". Well, it was one of those days. We didn't have the right sort of food in the fridge so ended up having a KFC (yes, I know!!) in town and then trekking over to the dance studio on the tram which involved my walking in my dance shoes. We got there on time but there weren't many people there so there was that horrid sensation of walking into an unfamiliar place where you know no-one and suspect that you're going to have a terrible evening. Sober. And it's brightly lit. Blegh.
But we soldiered on and it did improve. Luckily, on closer inspection, there was one other couple from our class there (although not the couples we had been meant to meet up with!!) so we had someone to go and sit with. We don't know them as such but they were friendly and at least we didn't feel like Billy-No-Mate Beginners among a sea of old-stagers.
Rich is less gung ho about things in general than me. Whereas I'm happy to leap in and see how it goes and don't mind making a chump of myself, he prefers to be confident that he is going to be able to do something BEFORE he starts! Neither of these approaches are wrong as such but they do clash. So, where I wanted to get straight onto the floor and have a go at a waltz, he flat-out refused until he'd had a drink and chilled and got the measure of it. We managed NOT to have a row about it but the atmosphere was a little touch and go for a while. But eventually we compromised. I bought a bottle of red to loosen us up and he got up and danced when the cha cha cha came on to get us going sooner than he felt comfortable with. (I felt that we had to get out there or we would be clinging to the edge of the dance floor like a couple of maiden aunts all night!)
There were a couple of sets of 3 or 4 tunes for each of the standard dances throughout the night and we managed 2 goes each of the samba, cha cha, rumba and tango. I was sad that Rich didn't feel brave enough to tackle the waltz and we gave up quicker than I would have liked on the jive but both of these are understandable as well as a little disappointing. Both of us were agreed that we weren't going to go near the quickstep or foxtrot....need a lot more time on those!!
The dancefloor was full for the waltz and, not only that, full of confident whirling couples! We haven't done it for a few weeks and I do appreciate that Rich was a bit nervous about steering us around...really. I was just sad 'cos it looked so lovely to be whirled around; dreamy and romantic. Next time. At least we tried a jive but the music was quite a bit quicker than in our class and we struggled to get going and I didn't push the point. Also, next time!
So, all in all, not an unmitigated disaster but not an unqualified sucess either. But at least I know there will be a next time. Both of us ended up enjoying the evening and it was inspiring to see the good dancers strutting their stuff. Trouble is, I suspect it will take a long time to get good (if we ever do) on one hour's tuition per week! We were talking to one other couple who were not particularly skilfull but admirably enthusiastic and they told us they've been coming for 4 years!! Yikes. But great to see the new steps we will eventually be learning. When you make such slow progress, it can get a bit boring so it's nice to know that there is still loads to be learned.
We finished off the evening in our football local which, conveniently, is next door to the studio watching a blues band. I was a tad overdressed in my LBD but it was a good band and a nice finish to the evening.
I was so chuffed when Rich checked out the date of the next dance in January....it hasn't put him off totally. I was also chuffed that we managed to steer through the unpromising start to the evening without blaming or arguing. In my previous existence, the evening would have turned into sulks and recriminations and probably a horrible row once we got home. What am I saying - I would never have got as far as the dance studio in my previous existence!! It makes me happy every time when we DON'T have a row in a situation which previously would have been "all my fault". Such a refreshing feeling.
I suppose anything new and totally out of ones' comfort zone is bound not to be perfect but at least we can learn from the experience to make next time better. Next time I'm going to suggest that we go for a light bite to eat in town, share a bottle of red for courage and then take a taxi straight there. And make sure that our pals actually turn up too!!
Sunday was meant to be golf with his brother but the weather fouled that up too. I wasn't sorry - getting cold, wet and muddy 2 days in a row is not my idea of fun. So, a quick road-based dog walk (sorry girls!) and then into town for a shop and to buy our Christmas tree!! Yay! Last year Rich resisted a tree and decorations so my efforts were a tad half-hearted but this year he seems happy to embrace the Full Monty. A nice looking 6-footer is propped up awaiting lights and decorations. We have to get them sorted before Friday when we have his brothers, sister-in -law and sister and my sister-in-law coming over for supper and drinks! I'm really looking forward to it.
We narrowly lost the pub quiz but won the beer round and all is back being right with the world. Well, apart from the first snow of the season and having to battle over the hill through unploughed, slushy/snowy roads to work this morning to be greeted by a bright, clear, sunny day! Rotherham exists in a different meteorological zone to the Peak District only 20 miles away, that is for sure. I'm sure my colleagues think I'm mad when they see me arrive bundled up in boots and coats, gloves etc