Our respected Chairman has a summer job; Rather than sweat it out with the rest of us in Cyprus he and his wife return to Orkney where he does solid work for Scotland without a bit of dancing. Keith is a volunteer guide at the amazing Neolithic World Heritage Sites of Skara Brae and the Ring of Brodgar. This year he had an additional job involving the baton that toured Scotland prior to the Commonwealth Games have a look at the YouTube link to see what it was all about http://youtu.be/wTgy4odBIMU
3 weeks and counting ... I'm starting to prepare for the 6 week Summer Dance course I'm running at the UKCA; I am doing it as part of my Unit 4 requirements for this year but I am also excited about getting some brand new people dancing. Quite a few folk, who otherwise wouldn't have tried it, have decided to give it a go - including several men, which is great for the class because it makes teaching formations much less confusing. I don't think I have ever run a class consisting entirely of women - in my experience 90% of men who try this sort of dancing really enjoy it and often end up being more enthusiastic than the women who had to drag them there in the first place, however I know they can initially be well out of their comfort zone so I am truly impressed to have at least 3 (so far) willing to give it a go!
The Latin Parish has been working hard for many years to raise money for an additional Hospice in Paphos. The opening day has been awaited with great anticipation and despite the short notice, injury limiting the number of dancers available and the fact that Pete and I had only arrived back from the UK 2 days before we managed to get a few people together and provide a short display - it was so well received we would have liked to have done more - here are some photos that were available on their website - to see more about the day follow the link http://archangel-michael-hospice.com/a-successful-open-day
It's a strange feeling being out of one's depth - you know you can swim very well but the most likely direction seems to be down! I am now in the very beautiful Wirral area of the UK being kindly hosted by Maxine to allow my teaching certificate mentor a chance of seeing me in action. I taught 2 completely unfamiliar classes but despite spending hours preparing I confess I was terrified - not of teaching the classes - I knew that everyone was very kindly disposed and wanted me to do well - but of teaching the classes under critical observation. I expected to feel all light and relieved now it is over, but at this exact moment all I can think of is her very justified critique - there just seems so much work to be done. On the other hand tonight we've got a social dance to go to that will be just fun (someone will be watching my feet but never mind), it'll be the first dance for decades when I'm not running myself or almost crippled so as long as Pete's knee holds up and I can actually dance with him, it's going to be great.
In Cyprus selling tickets for an event in June is hard work - it's not that people don't want to attend, it's just that so many regulars at the dancing sessions head back to the UK, or get a quick holiday in before the flight prices escalate that you start feeling like there's no-one still here at all. In the end it was satisfying to achieve more than 50 tickets sold - and I'm sure that next year it won't be so much hard work because it was a fabulous night. The setting was wonderful, the food excellent and the weather very, very kind - just warm enough to stop 'sitters out' from freezing, but cool enough to dance, and we danced, and danced - people who swore when they arrived that they never danced were up 2 or 3 times and after hours of hard work getting the music ready to play with our new speakers it was gratifying to be able to control everything - use the mics, change the music, and baring one or two minor hiccups feel that it all went incredibly well. It was a fitting end to an amazing season for the St Andrew Society - though of course there are many things still to come - watch, well lots of spaces on the website. Pictures from the June Jamboree are under the Past Events link above
It is amazing.... numbers at class are finally dropping and only 20 dancers made it to the last Tuesday class, but we still had 2 sets up dancing for almost every dance - and some dances we did twice to allow everyone a chance to do them. Well done to everyone who is working so hard to enjoy themselves! One thing that is helping is the continuing cool weather - we still need all the windows open and the fans on, but we aren't totally awash with sweat as we normally would be at this time of year. In fact the weather is really strange and I am currently looking out onto cloud with high winds whipping past the window. Thank goodness the June Jamboree isn't in the next few days! Next week is our last dance class - usually I am looking forward to a rest but there is going to be so much going on over the summer I won't really be getting much of a break. I am currently starting to work seriously on my Unit 4 teaching programme. I will be holding these lessons over the summer - more about that when I know it myself.. watch this space... :-)
Most weeks I come home from dancing and do a program for the following week while things are fresh in my mind.. and I feel no need to change it. But this week I realized that we had been doing the Byron Strathspey for 6 weeks solid - nothing wrong with that really, it's a lovely dance, but there are so many other great dances and only one more week to go after this. I also wanted to fit in 'The Bees of Maggieknockater' one of my favorite dances, which we very rarely do in class, so I'm indulging myself for once. See you tomorrow
Yesterday we had this season's final Sunday 'Advanced' Class - we stop dancing for the summer because it is really too hot to dance and usually we struggle for numbers - people are either entertaining visitors or away themselves. Ironically it is cool here at the moment, and since in the last weeks we have been joined by a new, and very experienced dancer it seemed premature to be calling a halt - however in a month's time we won't be regretting it. Following the class - which despite having to be changed at the last minute seemed to go pretty well - we all congregated back at our house for lunch on the patio. The patio has a history. It is one of those projects that seemed to go on for ever - every man & his wife has helped us with portions of it and it never seemed likely to be finished.... but now dah, dah it's done. Hence the need to have a party on the patio. Except it was cold - so we actually had it inside, mainly, never mind - it was good anyway, thanks everyone for coming, and I'll send you all the recipe for the Lasagne when I have a moment!
Around this time of year as I see the end of our dancing season approaching I wonder why we have to stop. People are still attending class, really enjoying the dancing, we have beginners just starting, visitors enjoying our classes and it seems such a pity to stop ... and then all of a sudden it gets hot and even worse, humid. This weeks class was the first really sweaty class of this year - it was a great night of dancing, almost every dance we had 2 or 3 sets on the floor, but it was very hard work. All of a sudden having a bit of a break seems a good idea, but not quite yet, it's good that we've still got another 2 classes and the June Jamboree to look forward too.
I've decided it's time to slow down time. All this whizzing past has just got to stop. The alternative is for my brain to start working faster... if anybody has a some hints as to how that can be achieved I'd be very pleased to hear from them. At the moment, with the sun finally giving us warm days up in the mountains, it is full steam ahead in the garden. it is looking great and I enjoy it so much but there is still lots of planning to do for the classes and especially for the Jamboree so I can't relax entirely. I'm not complaining, how wonderful to be so busy with such enjoyable stuff. Next week we have our final 'Advanced' dance class and I'm looking forward to a little soiree on the patio afterwards but I also have a Photoshop lesson to teach, a nature photography field trip to go on, a quiz and our normal weekly lessons and computer and camera club - 'retired' is definitely the wrong word.
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