Headed out on a walk around the block yesterday to loosen my back and side muscles that felt so beat up after swimming. Came back an hour plus later. It was a gorgeous morning, absolutely perfect for walking, and I found the longer I walked the better I felt. I really have turned the corner with this exercise thing.
Kept my promise to allow myself as long as I wanted on music, too. Managed to work for over two hours before I needed to shut down. My new song is cleaned up and EQ’d. Another time slot to work on effects and then I’ll be looking to record it. Very jazzed about this piece. It’s not quite the psychedelic trance I’ve been doing, nor the pop sounding vocal pieces I’ve been writing. This is different. It’s a little throw back to my roots, but done the way I would have LIKED to hear my early stuff. I’m calling it ‘gezellig’, which means pleasant in Dutch. At 120 bpm it’s a step down in tempo from the rest of the material I’m working on for my new release. Somehow I managed to intertwine two melodies so that they work in harmony, yet offer unique melodic structure to the song. I finally got the song set and just stood back in the room to really listen…
And I picked up my feet and began to dance.
I became a DJ because I can’t really dance. Used to; used to love it. But somewhere around the age of 20 my hips began to freeze up. Rather than a smooth cycle when I rotated my hips, I’d get a hard lurch to one side – and pain. And I don’t know any moves. Like, ANY. I’ve always felt klutzy on the dance floor. But suddenly yesterday I was stepping in a small box. Sambaing or rumbaing – I don’t know. MOVING. Turning. My feet kept the beat and in a moment I wasn’t just shuffling around the floor or trying, I was in full fantasy dance mode, complete with a very handsome partner in my arms.
I have NEVER in my LIFE fantasized over dancing with a guy in a waltz or samba or anything. Ever. Mostly because I always felt so clumsy. Why should I fantasize over something so very, very impossible for me achieve? Yet there I was, twirling around my very cramped front room, pretending I was on Dancing with the Stars or something.
And it was fun.
Maybe I’ll learn to dance yet.
Today I face my first language lesson of the week. I feel unprepared. Did a lot of reading since the last session. Slow reading. I can still only cover about 6-7 pages in an hour. But I haven’t talked much, haven’t conjugated verbs, haven’t pounded vowel sounds over and over. Well, this is part of my taking it slow project. Only an hour a day max on language work. I think I’m beginning to understand ‘toch’, a word that often comes up in sentences and means ‘still, yet, all the same, even so, indeed, anyway, anyhow’. It’s sort of an appendage word; it’s there, it adds meaning, but I still think right now you could strip it away and be perfectly intelligible. Unfortunately, it’s used. A lot. So I’m trying to get used to it. Seeing where it gets inserted in sentences, repeating the interjections I see (toch, maar) and just trying to get the hang of it. Been reminding myself, too, that I’m facing several regional accents. One of the instructors I work with on Friday is really riding me on those vowel sounds, but his accent is different from that of my first teacher who rode me on vowel sounds. So that’s tough. I’m trying to sort out some sort of middle ground; some pronunciation that everyone can understand immediately. Don’t know that I’ll be able to find that, but I’m trying. And in the end, I don’t know how vital it is. My first teacher said to me that some words sound identical, and you’ll only know the difference due to the other words used in the sentence. Plus, I’ve been listening to native Dutch speakers talking at a ‘normal’ adult pace. All those subtle vowel sounds get blurred when the speed picks up. But I understand the importance of getting it straight at the start. Knowing clearly and certainly which vowel sounds I’m trying to make, which words I’m trying to say. And how to spell them.
So. Finish up my web work, squeeze in half an hour of play time (because I REALLY need play time every day), breakfast, get dressed, and off to my lesson. No promises, but I want to try – if I feel good and have the energy – to come back via the mall. Do a bit of shopping I’ve been promising myself. Get some new underwear. Look for one new nice autumn top. Maybe even pick up some new socks. I’ve got a coupon for my favorite clothing store. And I am definitely in need of those items.
Got a flyer in the post for a local gathering of home owners and residents. My bro and I both want to go. It may be more for businesses than individuals, but it’s another opportunity to get out among people who live in our area. Mix. Say hello. Get to know locals by site, at least. And, of course, try out our stilted Dutch. Go through the inevitable questions that are covered by our computer lessons (boy! did they get THOSE right!) like ‘what’s your name?’, ‘where are you from?’, and of course ‘how long have you lived here?’.
My social calendar is beginning to fill up. Classes, theatre group, neighborhood gathering. I’m excited by that. Hopeful. A little concerned I may be picking up a bit too much steam. Pushing myself a wee bit too hard. Trying to remember moderation – in everything (including moderation itself; it’s good to once in a while go beyond what you think you can or should do).
This is a new balance point. It feels a little awkward, yet it also feels right. Instinctive.
Just like those dance moves.