Dancing and the German boy

I have a great love for dancing.

Not that kind where everyone stands in a large circle and sort of bobs oneself to the music whilst finding something to do with ones hands so as not to let them hang awkwardly by ones sides. Mmmmmmm, no.

Not the kind of dancing that takes place in dark, crowded clubs, closely surrounded by gyrating girls and nimble footed boys.

Neither do i participate in line dancing, left left, oh, forward one, kinda switch over, left, no right! Right, right, right, right, oh everyone else has rotated, sorry! i didn't mean to stand on your foot... Ah, i give up.

Put me in these dancing environments and i find the most comfortable couch in a prime position (house parties with accompanying house music - shudder), a patch of grass, the quickest strategy of departure (usually the way i came in, 15 minutes later), the loneliest corner, i keep the table safe, i cross my legs and fold my arms and look disdainful, i finish the snacks, i text, i look bored, i waylay people and talk to them, i stare at my fingernails and into the distance... But i do not join in the dancing!

There is a fair amount of dancing i cannot do. But, i do enjoy, and am fairly good at, 'proper dancing'.

"Isn't 'jamming with your mates to a sweet track' proper dancing?” you may ask.




"So what is this 'proper dancing' you speak of?"

"Well, young 'un, i say, it’s the 1,2,3.. 1,2,3 kind of dancing."
Partner dancing, ballroom, latin and even sokkie. The kind of dancing where you are firmly grasped by your partner and whirled across the dance floor. 

"Why, you ask, is 'proper dancing' so great in your eyes?"

Let me tell you a story. Come, sit here by me.

Once upon a time, not long ago, in Pretoria, a land next to Johannesburg there was a dance evening attended by a curly headed girl, from Benoni and her short friend, Christine A.

This girl is me.

Christine S, who works with me, told me about this dancing place. It is a place, she said, where you can sokkie. (Sokkie is a style of music and dance unique to Southern Africa and popular mostly with Afrikaners, thank you Wikipedia) So i invited Christine A along and off we went to dance in Pretoria.

We began the evening with some half shouted introductions across the table; Hi my name is Chriakdhfsfian, pleased to meet you. Wait, what was his name again? Who knows? We sit at the table, a table full of strangers. We, the Christines and i, talk with one another, i feel a little awkward. i cross my legs and fold my arms.

Chriakdhfsfian asks me to dance.

And so it begins.

Once you’ve been out once on the dance floor the other boys must feel it is ok to dance with you because, thereafter, you get asked to dance at a steady rate. It starts with the boys at your table and ripples out into the hall and the dance invitations from the males at other tables begin.

They approach you while you sit at the table. They waylay you as you come off the dance floor. They jump up into your path and belt out the: “Would you like to dance?” question.

i say yes.

Every time.

Because i love dancing.

There are a variety of conversation topics that get brought up when dancing with strangers. There is the usual, age, name, vocation etc and then the unique, toothbrush colours, guesses at your heritage due to your curly hair and the declaration that your blouse looks like a Grandmothers curtains. 

Some give you dancing advice: Smile, stand straighter, put your hand here, pretend you are an ice skater. Some exclaim, ‘I thought I was never going to see you again’.

The evening wears on and i encounter a variety of boys.

-       The sing along to the song type

-       The ones that stare at you oddly as they spin you around

-       Very sweaty ones

-       Ones that don’t dance too well and ones that dance amazingly

-       Some are English, most are Afrikaans

-       Boring ones, flirty ones and silent ones

-       Ones that you hope don’t come back for a second dance and ones that you really hope do

-       And one German that danced so well that i had stranger crush on him for the next 3 months. It wasn't a big crush; it was just that i have yet to dance with someone who dances as well as he did. His movements were fluid and smooth and he spun and dipped me and literally swept me off my feet. He was, of course, also good looking, charming and witty. He is the kind of dancer that makes you feel like you’re the only one on the dance floor with him; he looks into your eyes and has an unwavering gaze. He is appreciative and complimentary of one’s femininity.

-       Ok, maybe it  was a 4 month crush

“Yeah, Yeah, a good looking German. All this is well and good, you say, but you still haven’t told me why it is you love dancing so much“

That is true

The best kind of dancers and dancing is the kind that brings you back to dancing evening after evening, the kind that instills in you a love for dancing, for movement, for music.

The best kind of dancers are the ones that smile at you and laugh with you when you stumble, the kind that make you feel like a lady, feel beautiful and graceful. The kind that dance beautifully and lead you just as well, you float across the hall, you trust your partner as he drops you towards the floor in a variety of dips, you twist and your skirt whips around you as you spin and twist.

Dancing sweeps me off my feet, sometimes literally. Dancing makes me smile, it makes me feel wonderful, graceful and beautiful and it makes my heart dance and that’s why i love it.

Just dance and you will see. 


  1. I love this! I think you should write about sokkie in Cape Town though as well :P

  2. Oh Austen,you write so perfectly. I am almost in the dance hall with you. Don't stop writing or dancing.

  3. This was amazing to read! :) Keep on blogging...

  4. Thank you all for your compliments :)

  5. Look at you... Writing and dancing!

  6. Anonymous31 July, 2013