Well it was a packed night last night! For the first time this year we topped 40 at the class, and most of us danced as much as we could - at one point we had 32 people dancing which was definitely stretching the Latin Parish Hall to it's capacity and required some strategic retreats from the few sitting out to avoid having their toes trampled. P wielded a mean mop to keep everyone safe on the rather slippery floor - apologies to the dancers who managed to find the one tiny square he missed - though the problem was soon remedied. It was really nice to welcome even more returnees, guests and newcomers - even though we are still missing a few familiar faces. It is amazing that we are still low in numbers for the ball - a combination of double booking and early flights home stopping many, otherwise certain, guests from attending. It's a guaranteed super night - there's nothing quite like having real musicians to dance to, even if we don't get many tickets sold it will still be fabulous, however it will be such a shame if people who could go miss it - we only hold one event like it a year, and there is nothing else in Cyprus quite like it - worth trying at least once.
For a long time P and I have arrived at 5 ish and happily trotted around getting the room and music ready in time for possible newcomers at 5:30 ish, but we've rarely been interrupted until 6 ish when the hoards arrive for the main dance session. It was therefore a very strange evening for us when, not only were we joined by most of the committee around 5, but then 2 beginners actually arrived before 5:30 for a little pre-dance session; in fact we almost had 3 newcomers as a very brave Chinese lady came to check us out... having attended a Greek dancing class, with the whole session in Greek I know that it is certainly possible to learn dancing without speaking the language - but that was a very small class and all the participants at the same level - so if she returns next week I hope everyone will be very welcoming. It was a great dance session, we welcomed some more swallows back to shore, so again we had to do a bit of teaching and the occasional break down of dances was somewhat inevitable - but - if it highlights a problem that can be sorted out then it isn't really a problem! We'll get them all under our belt before the ball.
We are so used to saying temporary goodbyes to our many seasonal ‘swallows’ that it is very difficult to believe that Maxine – who admitted she has been dancing with our class for 13 years now – is finally leaving for good... or bad as the case may be. The good thing is that we had a super night’s dancing so she went out on a high and I’m pretty sure she’ll be back to see us – and if not we can always go and see her, and dance with her too, since her RSCDS Wirrall Branch is as welcoming to visitors as we are. On the plus side we welcomed for the first time a lovely couple who are also heading home, but who will be out again next year and will definitely be rejoining us. Dance-wise we tackled some pretty tricky stuff and won! Well done, especially to our beginner’s some of whom were dragged way beyond their comfort zone but did brilliantly. It was the first time this year we’ve managed 3 sets up for even 4 couple dances and it was certainly chaotic at times but it was noticeable that even when a dance seemed to break down irretrievably everyone managed to sort themselves out again... and that, in my opinion at least, is the real sign of good dancers!
It's difficult to know where to start; my last blether was a couple of weeks ago or at least that's what it feels like, in fact it's only 10 days but we've been over to Kyrenia and danced with the small group Pat runs there - really friendly and great fun, this week our own class again swelled to greater numbers making for a great atmosphere but lots of hard work, as well as many more returnee's we welcomed some lovely visitors who normally dance in Bournemouth. P & I have just this minute returned from a really super Society lunch at the Aphrodite Rock Brewery, I know I won't be the only one who really enjoyed it; In addition to all this I gave a lecture at our Church's women's group meeting yesterday, P & I met up and had a day out with friends of P's from 30 years ago the day before that, we are doing at Treasure hunt tomorrow and on Monday I am starting my afternoon 'Dancing at the UKCA' sessions that the Society have kindly allowed to be advertised on the website. Pheww - will it get quieter soon? Probably not, preparations are now starting for the St Andrew's Ball - I'm looking forward to it already!
It was great to see many familiar faces back with us for another great night's dancing. Yet again we revised the Rondell - it's always a struggle for first timers, but every time we do it, it becomes clearer. Once mastered we had 2 sets up for Silver Tassie - a lovely dance to have on the programme. The weather has now cooled down to a reasonable temperature although it's still nice to have the windows open and the fans going. We danced most of the programme, with 2 sets up, not realizing that all around us there were storms and rain showers. P & I are now off for a night in the North to join the Kyrenia dancing class at Pat's invitation, I'm really looking forward to it - and I know that anyone is welcome to join them so if you are ever in Kyrenia on a Thursday night let her know and she's send you directions.
The Kyrenia (Girne) Dance Class
Finally we seem to be getting back to our normal numbers of 20+ at least, with 2 sets dancing most of the programme. We still have many people away so it will only get better from now on.. at least that is the theory. Welcome back to everyone who hadn't made it to class so far. The night was a bit cooler than previous classes so we managed even the more frantic dances like Duke of Perth and The Montgomerie's Rant - and for the start of the season everyone danced really well, even when they thought they didn't, it usually takes a week or two for the brain to get into gear even if the feet are managing - but that isn't so evident this year; we even had time to dance the 'extra' on the programme, the lovely 'Barbara's Strathspey. This weekend is our 'advanced' class and I will be introducing a couple of the more interesting dances on the St Andrew's Ball program which most people wont have done yet - should be fun.
I knew that the next class after such an excellent event would be a little strange but never expected quite such an unusual night. It was the smallest Tuesday class I have ever taken, with a combination of other events, holidays and injuries taking their toll we ended up with only 8 dancers, two of which were relative newcomers. It was still a very good night however, the smaller numbers meant that we could teach several relatively difficult dances at an easier pace than normally possible and we ended up dancing over half the advertised programme with a couple of extra's thrown in - though the unusual circumstance of having too many men initially did throw us a bit - not that we are complaining of course! Let's see what next week brings!
I approach any event with a certain amount of trepidation, however much preparation has gone into it there are always a few unknowns - especially with an outdoor event, even in Cyprus. The morning saw us decorating the Elea's patio area and it really looked lovely by the time we finished, we just hoped it wouldn't blow away by the time we returned in the evening! Returning at 7 O-clock with bated breath... it still looked lovely! The evening was blessed with lovely weather, the Elea Staff were superb, the food excellent and everybody danced, and danced - truly one of the most magical nights we've organized yet - well done to everyone involved, including our marvellous guests - the only thing bad about it... how on earth can we improve on such a fabulous night!
We had a few more dancers than last week but we are still way down on last year's numbers, perhaps because it is still so hot? Who knows. Never mind, we made up for numbers by welcoming a friend from Kyrenia and we had an excellent night of dancing, learning several formations well enough to dance some completely new dances with virtually no mistakes first time through. A possible tragedy was luckily averted and the vinegar treatment used to good effect! Those present will understand!
I look forward to seeing people at the Fall Ball, let's hope that the weather will bless us with as lovely a night as last year's June Jamboree.
It was, as expected, hot and sticky but enough people arrived to make up a set and with the industrial size fan keeping us cool we managed to dance most of the dances on the programme and enjoy a good sociable night to start the season. Two new dances (for this class at least) were introduced and pronounced good! Next week there'll be another, but we'll have plenty of time to practice them all before the St Andrew's Ball. In the meantime it's full steam ahead to the Fall Ball - only a week to go - the emphasis definitely being on 'steam' with the weather as hot as it is at the moment, but it is promised to be cooler next week - lets hope!
Originated in Manchester, England: Worked almost 20 yrs in the Emirates: Lives in Cyprus, Teaches Scottish Country Dancing (RSCDS qualified 2015) -just the average life. Also loves Photography & Photoshop, Gardening, Music, Sewing, Design, Reading, Sudoku, God, my husband & my cats (not necessarily in that order). Hates - cooking, housework, TV, politicians, cruelty and greed of any kind