For much of my life I've found it hard to talk about what I love. So now I'm doing it starting with Books and continuing with Dance :).
A Culture That Didn't Encourage it
I'm not sure that England in the 80s and 90s was known as a place that encouraged dancing. At least for boys! I know dance was taught to girls at school and I think we got Basketball instead! We could have easily traded cricket, circuit training or something else equally pointless for it.
Instead I have a few memories of dancing at weddings and school parties and school discos. And moving to music while pouring pints as a student or dancing at clubs with students or hockey friends.
And I remember a few times going to a club on my own just to dance, so clearly it was meant to be.
Partner Dancing for the Win
A little after Uni I was looking to widen friendship groups so after disliking Ballroom an uncle suggested Modern Jive, which I took to straight away. Leading to salsa, blues and many other partner dances which are still part of my life!
It's probably the change that has impacted my life most. It eventually led to meeting lots of folk I wouldn't have met otherwise, including living with Spanish speakers which lead to learning languages, traveling more and moving abroad!
Partner dance gave me dance weekends, international friends, several relationships, afternoon dancing (the best), better empathy, rumba on the beach, a wider appreciation of music and lots of great memories.
But mostly it gave somewhere to dance.
What's to love About Dance
So dance is something we can all do.
But for me especially while dancing I feel good, I feel energised, engaged and relaxed (not always at the same time). It's a way to release stress and the best times are when you get into flow state during dance.
Since covid it's also become part of my morning routine, with the simple method of putting on 2-3 random songs on and dancing to them around the flat or wherever I am.
It's also a good form of exercise! And sometimes of creativity too.
After writing this I now I want to go and dance.
I haven't found my favourite space yet in Porto yet. I'll try the salsa scene here again and maybe lindy or zouk or something else new.
In lots of places late on they are smoking inside though. Or the partner dancing starts at midnight!