My street shoes roll quietly in the door, with me and my bag along for the ride, then stop at the bench where I sit for a moment, while Ruthanne readies the room. I pull off silent shoes heel first, then rub and bend my feet before wedging them into the snug and soft black leather, pull the laces firm, and tie them tight. I roll my ankles round and round for good measure and stand to stretch. I make my way to the faux wood floor, and can't help but smile at the crisp tap, tap, tap, tap as I walk. There must be just a tad of kid left in me because I just love that the shoes tap so clear almost a chime.
Deb arrives, with a friendly hello and begins to change up too. We chatter about this and that while we stretch and pull one foot at a time back to behind to wake up the front of our upper legs, more ankle rolls, and we are off. "He's so tired, and he has all this stuff going on all at once. . ." Tip, tap, tip, tap, tip, tap, toe, heel, toe, heel, tip, tap. . . heel, toe to the front then ticking our way around one oclock, two oclock, three oclock. four oclock, five oclock, and back toward the front, other leg, tip, tap, tip, tap. . . ". . .family is coming all the way from Jersey to see. . . . . Let's flap" We flap, floppy from the knee down, floppy feet fl ap, fl ap, fl ap, fl ap, fl ap, fl ap, fl ap . . . "Does he mind?" Walk. toe, heel, toe, heel, click, clack, click, clack, . . .flick quick on the toes shuffle, shuffle, shuffle, shuffle. . .
Before long conversation fades into my mind as we dig into the dance, toe heel toe heel, shuffle shuffle shuffle shuffle, toe heel toe heel shuffle shuffle shuffle shuffle, Oh whoops am I early or did they forget to turn? keep going. slap, hop shuffleshuffle, step, slap hop shuffleshuffle, step, stomp tap tappa tappa tap stomp tap tappa tappa tap. . . Whoa! silent cheer for being on time there. . . I did It!. . .keep going kid! swoosh, whoops, almost fell over grace. . . What's next??? Oh yeah like this part. . .smack, weeee the leg goes round, step stomp.. .
Finished a run through, and Ruthanne shows us a new step to add on. I listen and watch, and ask, "Did she shuffle again, or just a flap then switch?" "yeah its there but it's quick" Slap flap tap, ok got that part, but the next? I can feel my brain stretching! Yikes. . . this is going to take a while, I know if I can just take a few tries on my own it will come, the sound, the feel, better if I don't watch her, I will be off a beat. . . Before I figure it out, we change gears back to the beginning of the dance, this run through feels more fluid, more in synch, must be some new connections in my feet. . . in my brain :)