First, a little bit of shameless Washington promotion…look at that header picture! That is the sunset from a place in Shoreline which overlooks the beautiful Puget Sound, and I’m proud to say I took that photo myself.
Humble-brag aside, I have recently accomplished more of my goals. I’ve also been quite terrible at keeping up with blogging about them, so I’m going to end up posting a whole lot in a very short period of time.
Going down the list, the first I arrive at is number 20 – take an Irish step dancing class!
That was such a fun goal to accomplish. If you ask my grandparents (who read my blog…hi grandma and grandpa!) I’ve been Riverdancing for quite some time. I’m sure I even used to put on small performances as a child, arms pinned to my sides as I danced around the room. I was never enrolled in any sort of dance class, and to be honest, I didn’t know that you could take any form of Irish dancing locally.
On a whim one day during my sophomore year of college, I looked up Irish dance schools in Seattle. I found quite a few, and one that wasn’t too far from the school. The class times conflicted with my class schedule, but when it came time to write my list I made sure to make it a point to attend a class.
Fast-forward to the end of my senior year. I realized about a week out from graduating that not only had I not attended a class, but that I was going to be moving to Florida. Who Irish dances in Florida? I could take a line dancing class I suppose, or maybe a armadillo hunting class, or even a drive-like-an-asshole class, but surely not an Irish dancing lesson. Okay, maybe I exaggerate a bit, but I was convinced that this was going to be a lost goal.
However, there is a small dance studio in the town near the military base that not only offers classes, but they’re very good at what they do! A few of the champion dancers (who are almost all younger than I am) were recently invited to dance for the Chieftains in Tallahassee. They win regional and national competitions, and they’re very dedicated to their sport. As I suspected, the South is not a hotspot for Irish dance. They often have to fly or drive for many hours to compete, which I sure is very tiring.
For the month of February, they are doing a promotion where your first month is free! I’m Dutch, I like free, I went to a class. To be honest, I almost chickened out of said class because I found out the class was mixed-age, and not adult only. If I want to look like a fool, I’d like to do so in front of other adults, not six-year-olds. I almost decided to go grocery shopping instead, but knowing that this was my only chance, continued to drive.
Thankfully, the first person I met there was a girl my age who was helping teach the class. She has been competing since she was 10, and I believe she’s a national qualifier this year. We were able to chat it up a bit before my six year old classmates came in.
The first kid I paired up with during class was NOT happy to be dancing with me…I mean, we were only warming up, but I could tell I was cramping her style. She’s already light years ahead of me, and was doing to fancy step while I was working on the basics and tripping every other jump. Another one of the girls was on her fourth class and hardly knew her right from her left, but we were paired together for the duration of the lesson. I learned quite a few moves, worked up a bit of a sweat, and left class with a smile on my face. They also gave me my own set of soft shoes to use for the class. I’ll definitely be going back, but I’m pretty sure I won’t be competing anytime soon 🙂 My only sub-goal from goal 20 is to actually get good enough to do the hard-shoe dances. I mean, really, isn’t that what every wannabe Riverdancer dreams of?
Goal 20 – I’m calling you complete!