Performance legs at the ready!!!

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Tonight at our burlesque class we had someone videoing us to promote the classes.  Everyone made a big effort to dress up and I thought we all looked fabulous!  It was also a lot of fun, as usual, with long black gloves being flung around and general silliness, amongst the serious business of learning the dance.  Pretty much how it is every week!

It is getting pretty exciting at class too – in just under six weeks we will be performing in our first ever ‘student showcase’ night.  I love the classes so much I now attend two a week – so I’m learning two routines!  Some of the ladies have also been on a residential weekend and they have another dance to perform and we have the strip club performing as well!  Now, when I say ‘strip club’ please don’t jump to conclusions.  I don’t go to these classes but they are all about feeling good about yourself, not getting your kit off (although that is obviously involved!).  I asked some of the ladies to explain to me just what it is that goes on in these classes:

First of all, it’s about the tease.  Apparently the clothes stay on for most of the time – the emphasis is on ‘hinting’ that they might come off.  However, much more than this, it is about becoming confident in your own skin.  One woman told me it is about facing your demons.  The women explore the thoughts and feelings that hold them back and it is a journey of self discovery as much as anything.

Like I said, I don’t attend these classes but I can see how amazing they must be for the women who do.

So, anyway, we have our cabaret coming up…..imagine dancing on stage in your frillies??  No, neither could I before I joined the classes!!!  I am not, and never have been a dancer.  But, I’ll be up there, strutting my stuff, with a whole bunch of other women who probably feel exactly the same.   And, we will be amazing because we have found our inner divas!

It just goes to prove how bloody wonderful Burlesque is……

 

 

(that’s not ME in the gloves, I hasten to add!!!!)

Why you should learn how to shimmy….continued!

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Last night I went to the flat of one of the ladies who goes to the same class as me. As there was no class this week a few of us decided to get together for a practise. Along with myself, there was my daughter and one other lady. Age range, 29-50+.

Our practise session went well, it helps to go over some of the more difficult moves with others and we all felt quite pleased with ourselves.

In between practising, we chatted.

We all agreed that we have to be ‘selective’ with whom we share our burlesque. All of us know people who are a little bit ‘surprised’ that we do this dancing. Why is this?

Burlesque is associated with something rather seedy, it seems. Nice girls don’t do burlesque! However, our classes are full of lovely ladies! They are certainly not seedy or hookers!

Burlesque in its true form is art.  Yes, the dances can be seductive and a bit naughty but there is nothing distasteful about Burlesque.  It is glamorous and it is sexy.  It isn’t degrading or shameful.

Our classes are fun, they are uplifting and they help women to feel good about themselves, in all sorts of ways. Many of the women who join the class have had terrible experiences and have low self-esteem or lack self-confidence. Burlesque empowers these women by helping them to make positive life changes through their new-found confidence. I, for one, have seen women blossom as the classes have progressed.

How is this seedy? Or something to hide?

Those people who find it distasteful either don’t know what burlesque is or they have very narrow views.

I, for one, am proud to be part of it and I know my class mates are too. We aren’t call girls, or strippers and we aren’t degrading women.

We are a group of women who love to dance.

In frillies.

Got a problem with that?

Why you should learn how to shimmy…….

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At the beginning of this year, I started burlesque dance classes.  I wanted some form of exercise that didn’t involve a treadmill or hours of torture on the cross trainer.  I happened, by chance, to see a new class being advertised locally – burlesque!  I was intrigued!  I already loved the whole burlesque thing and owned a couple of corsets but I had never thought of dancing.  I’m not a dancer, I never have been…but I signed up for the taster session anyway.  

It was fun!!!  And although I was under no illusions that I looked like a professional dancer, I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

Over the year, I’ve continued the classes, only having to miss one course because of my surgery.  I hated not being there, I missed my weekly ‘fix’.

Just recently, I took a big step and attended a tassel twirling workshop.  Yes, I got my breasties out!  With tassels, obviously!  After a two-hour intensive workshop, I am proud to say I can twirl ’em to the right, twirl ’em to the left AND twirl ’em in different directions at the same time!!! Amazing!!!  Even more amazing for me as my surgery was breast surgery, the final operation after years and years of surgery.  My boobs are, quite frankly, a MESS!!  I felt quite apprehensive about ‘getting them out’ even if it was just with a bunch of women…but I needn’t have worried.  The class was fun, relaxed and exhilarating all at the same time.

That weekend, I truly understood burlesque, I think.

I’ve now signed up to do a second class every week and in October I’m going to be performing in our first ever CABARET!!!!!!

My fellow ladies are all such lovely women and our tutor, Jem, is more than just our tutor….she’s the ‘leader’ of the wonderful burlesque community that she has created.

I still look ridiculous when I dance.  My various problems mean I just can’t do some of the moves like others can.  But, when I dance, in my head….I’m gorgeous.

And THAT’S what it’s all about.

Are you LISTening? Then I’ll begin…..

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Having just said I wanted to write about more serious stuff on my blog, I just needed to update you on a few things first.  I’ve written a list:

1. Burlesque dancing

It’s going well. I am still rubbish at it, I will never master the art of shimmying whilst dipping and I am more Rita von Cheese than Dita von Teese but that doesn’t matter.  It’s fun, the girls are lovely and I get to wear frilly stuff.  There is a possibility I will even perform later this year with the group!!!!

2. Italian classes

Yup, finished the classes and have been to Italy since.  I wasn’t sure how much I would use the stuff we learned in class.  I didn’t feel the need to ask anyone where the museum was or what time the next train to Milan left.  However, I found that the basics I did learn gave me the confidence to try and speak the language and to ask the locals how to say the things I didn’t know.  I’m pretty much fluent now…… And Italy was beautiful, as always

3. Gym and my personal trainer

Oh forget that.  I never intend to set foot in a gym again as long as I live

4. Transport

I got a new car.  Well, not brand new but new to me.  Her name is Bunty and she is a Mini.  I’ve never had the inclination to name a car before but I do actually love this one.  And she goes!!!

I am sure I have more to tell you – but I won’t do it now.  I’ll save it for next time

And anyway, I am just in the middle of writing a list on things I need to do

Absence makes the heart grow fonder?

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I’m just stopping by to let the lovely blogging peeps here know that I have not dropped off the face of the earth – things have been busy, lots has been happening and I have just not had the inspiration to blog amongst all that, not that it’s been awful stuff, just busy!

I have also had the feeling that I have more serious stuff to write about and I am just in the process of developing that idea.

Watch this space!!!

Before the flame…..

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Here we go again! 100WCGU

Flame

Flame (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am getting in quick this week as I’m off to hospital tomorrow and will probably be quite demented for a few days following the anaesthetic!  Anyway, the prompt was “The flame flickered before……”

I love this game!

The flame flickered before it went out. This was bad news. No more matches and it was pitch black. What to do? Without the flame I couldn’t find anything. Without a match I couldn’t light the flame. Hours until dawn. Still, dark and silent. In that noisy way silence has when it is dark. I didn’t even have a torch.

Not that it would have made much difference if I did have a torch. No electricity. No electricity means no internet.

EEK!! Can you imagine life without the internet? I can’t.

Goodness me!

No 100 word challenge for one thing!!!

A tale of two apples

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List of U.S. state foods

This is my second post for the  100 Word Challenge – a great idea that encourages bloggers to write a post every week, using a set format.  Follow the link for more info and join in!  (It is also my 100th post, incidentally!!!)

Anyway, here is this week’s offering:

Once, when I was in Tesco’s, I bought an enormous bag of apples.  The label on the bag said ‘Empire Apples’.  However, when I got home, I found that I had bought a bag full of YELLOW apples! Empire apples are not yellow, in fact they are rather small, quite crisp, green in colour and sharp to taste. These apples were yellow, with a pappy sort of texture and sweet in flavour. ‘This is a Golden Delicious apple!’ I thought to myself.  ‘How dare they try to fob me off like this! I know my apples!!’  What a blooming liberty!!!

The Italian Circle

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Last night I had a surreal experience.  Not my MOST surreal experience ever, but certainly for this year.

After our Italian classes finished a few weeks ago, I kept in touch with one of the girls I met there.  We had been told about a local group that met monthly to talk about all things Italian with guest speakers and, when we found out this month there would be a speaker talking about Italian cuisine, we arranged to go together.

We had no idea what to expect but I had visions of cultured, sophisticated, sociable people standing around drinking wine and munching on nibbles,  laughing and talking with maybe the odd bit of Italian thrown in.  I envisaged them being very cosmopolitan and generally, rather cool.   I decided the social niceties would be followed by a brief talk, maybe a few slides, and then some free food.

What actually happened was we turned up early, only to be greeted by an elderly couple who couldn’t have been a day under eighty.   There were a few others already there and not one was under seventy.  There was a long table, behind which the ‘committee’ were sat, offering red or white wine at £2 a glass and a couple of bowls of crispy things.  (Oh and a plate of parmesan, which was later drizzled in really expensive balsamic vinegar, and some panforte, which was actually rather delicious).

Anyway, the room filled up with more octogenarian and then one of the ‘committee’ members stood up and introduced the speaker.  He got all muddled with his microphone so there was a lot of fussing around but, eventually, our speaker began her talk.   Contrary to what I had expected, she spoke about the history of Italian cuisine, going back to the 13th century and it was actually really interesting, along with the slides of paintings she showed  to illustrate her talk.

Half way through the talk, we glanced across at the ‘committee’ table and noticed two of the old dears had nodded off, arms folded in front of them, heads bowed.  I thought my friend may get an attack of the giggles then and wondered how that might go down with our elderly friends.  She managed to contain herself however, and they slept on.  Across the room another woman was fast asleep too and an old gent in front of us looked worryingly dead.  Fortunately, he woke up later, he was just napping.

We were like fish out of water at this event.  Younger than everyone by years.  I supposed I should have known it would be full of oldies, this is, after all, the sort of thing my mother goes to and she is almost 86.

I hope I am as active as these people (and my mum) when I am that old.  It’s almost a shame you have to get that old to be able to go to these things, or so it seems…where are all the younger people, are they just not interested?  I can’t believe it.

I feel a new venture brewing……..

Goodbye Ruby Tuesday (because I wrote this on Tuesday)

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My first ever attempt at the 100 Word Challenge! (The hardest bit was working out how to do all the linking!!!  And I still can’t do it. If anyone knows how…PLEASE tell me!!!!)

*UPDATE*   Thank you so much for all your advice and suggestions on here and via Twitter.  Thanks to Notquiteold, I’ve finally managed to link to the post here!

100 Word Challenge

Anyway, the word is RUBY.  Here goes…..

Our first cat was called Santa.  She was a female tabby but we got her at Christmas so Santa (Claws) she was.  Then came Pickle, a bruiser of a tom who used to look at me with contempt.  Our third cat was called Ruby.  A dear little thing, the runt of the litter and a gorgeous little tortoiseshell with huge eyes.  She would curl up in my cowl neck jumper, resting on my chest, purring happily.  She didn’t really ever grow, she was tiny.  She only survived two years, she was not really meant for this world.  

Dear little baby Rubes.