Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Last Weekend I Danced Like It Was 1969

So last weekend Ross and I attended a function at our clubhouse.   It was called "A Summer Boardwalk Rock and Roll Party".  The flyer promised we would "Dance, sing or just shake our groove thing".
There would be pizza, hot dogs, hamburgers, hot pretzels and ice cream sandwiches.  Oh, and boxes of Crackerjacks on every table.
By the way, the "Prize Inside" a Crackerjacks box is now a small piece of paper with a digital code.  None of us at the table, (all seniors) knew exactly what we were supposed to do with this piece of paper.
After doing a little research, I discovered that in order to find out what your prize is you have to:  Download an app, which will allow you to scan the sticker that you found inside the Cracker Jack box.  The scan will access a "baseball-inspired mobile digital experiences."
Whatever that means.  
When we first moved into this Active Adult community Ross and I  attended club house functions a few times a year. 
Actually, I distinctly remember the first one we went to.  The experience was quite jolting.  It was a similar type of affair, with food and dancing.  It kind of reminded me of a wedding which might have been held at a VFW hall.   You know, hand made decorations, a local band, round tables for eight, with plastic table clothes.  By the way, you usually have the best times at those weddings, don't you?
Okay, so the jolt for me, attending my virgin Active Adult Community club house dance, was that as I sat there glancing around the room, observing the other participants, I felt an overwhelming sense of melancholy.    At first, I was puzzled.  
The atmosphere was certainly festive.  The room was full of party sounds, peppy dance music, laughter, people shouting greetings to one another.   So why was I feeling a little less than jolly?
I slowly realized where my feeling of sadness was coming from.  
It's a little difficult to explain, actually.   I sort of felt as though I was having a back to the future experience. 
Does that make sense?  It was as if I was that sixteen-year-old girl, at a school dance, having a premonition of what all of my friends would look like 50 years later.  
Although I was on the dance floor dancing like it was 1969,  the white-haired, no longer thin as a rail woman staring back at me from my reflection in the darkened ballroom window was a startling reminder of this rude incongruity between my older body and young at heart soul.  
For a great many and various reasons, The Boardwalk Party dance this past weekend was the first one we have attended in quite a while.  
 As I glanced around the room I smiled at the couple who obviously had taken dance lessons 30 years ago and had perfected the fox trot.  I giggled at the big guy in his Hawaiian shirt trying to get under the limbo stick. "How low can you go?" I was reminded that women will dance with each other in pairs or groups of three, four and five. 
The band was great, the music was loud.  It was nearly impossible to have a conversation.  Ross leaned over and to get close to my ear, "Let me know if you want to get up to dance," he shouted.  He apparently had noticed my feet tapping to the beat.
"Nah, I don't feel much like dancing," I said as I felt the melancholy begin to settle in.  This time, my sadness was more complicated. 
Then I felt a tug on my arm.  I turned around to see a dear friend smiling down at me, motioning me to get up, "Come on," she said.  She guided me over to where another dear friend was waiting for me.  
The three of us had formed a bond about two years ago under the most difficult of times. 
With wide grins pasted on our faces, we began to move in time to "Ride Sally Ride".  Our heads bopped, our fingers snapped and our arms moved back and forth, up and down.
As the melconcoholy slowly melted away,  I felt my sixteen year old spirit twirl me around and around. 


  1. Good for you getting up and dancing! The party sounds like fun, even if a bit nostalgic :)

    We used to listen to a band at a club sometimes when we still lived in the San Diego area. I would admire those that got up to dance (our age crowd within a few years). I was never a dancer so I didn't feel comfortable doing so, but it always looked like fun :)


    1. The party was a great get-a-way. I'm not much of a dancer, but I can keep a beat. :)

  2. One of the activities Richard and I shared over our years together was dancing. He was such a good dancer....he came from the generation before me and he knew how to waltz, foxtrot, polka and all those great dances. He tried teaching me!! LOL. I did learn to waltz. I can understand the nostalgia. And I understand the melancholy.

    1. I love to watch couples who obviously mesh together so well on the dance floor. Aww, it's sweet that Richard taught you how to dance. Nice memories for you. And I know you do understand the melancholy.

  3. Those sort of gatherings always make me nostalgic. I'm glad you got up an danced. The other day we had a parade here in town. I did not go even though the parade route is half a block from my house. My neighbor went and when she came back she had tears in her eyes. She said she alwats gets emotional at things like this. I understand all too well.

    1. Nostalgia is so bitter sweet, isn't it? It's comforting to know you understand.

  4. This would make an interesting short story. Delving into the thoughts as you looked around. Add in some sort of plot, something happening in the main character's life... Yeah, that would be great.

    1. I hadn't thought of it in a story form. Good idea!

  5. I love dancing (although I can't do any of those proper dance steps!)and all those songs bring back such great memories. I know I don't move like I used to but at least CAN move :) Loved the snippet of video! Special Teaching at Pempi’s Palace

    1. Oh, I know I don't do any ballroom type fancy stuff either. :) A good reminder, at least I CAN still move :)

  6. Crackerjacks? An app? Seriously? I normally hate this expression, but I am too old for this.