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Life with Lavendar in London town

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Tango Till They're Sore

Dance is the simplest, most eloquent and perhaps honest expression of the human condition that we have as sentient beings. Music comes a close second.  However when it is your body that is the instrument of expression, it doesn't get much more intimate than that.

My body has not been my own for many months.  It has belonged to Dragon. It has served her needs, day in, day out to the point that I did not know it anymore. I do not mean that it had sagged and bagged beyond all recognition. I simply did not feel a part of it. I had detached. Exercise and the physical demands of looking after a baby did nothing to re-engage me with my corporeal self.

I knew what I had to do and finally last night, I got to it.

I went dancing.

Tango in fact. Argentine style.

As my feet slid across the floor in the familiar sinuous shapes of my past, I felt serene for the first time in a long, long while. Tom Waits (of all people) flashed through my head

Well ya play that Tarantella
All the hounds they start to roar
And the boys all go to hell
Then the Cubans hit the floor
And they drive along the pipeline
They tango till they're sore
They take apart their nightmares
And they leave them by the door

Instead of the usual tango feet image, I give you Tom Waits. A man I'd like to tango with

Dance has been the longest relationship I've had with anything or anyone, apart from my parents. And I had been neglecting that relationship for far too long

The body remembers always and reminds you of what you have forgotten.

It's all there; waiting beneath the surface.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Death Becomes Her

I caught the train by myself yesterday to visit some friends and my god, was it exciting. Childless, I could sit quietly, look out the window and daydream. The friends bit was great too but the train journey - I could do that forever.

It was a beautiful sunny day with clear blue skies and crisp city air. I had on pink lipstick. Life was good. So naturally I started thinking about death.

My husband thinks I am obsessed. Just that morning I had dramatically announced,  I could quite happily die now. I would be ok with that.

He rolled his eyes. You just have a chest infection, You won't die that easy.

That's not my point, I replied. What I mean is that if I were to die now, I would be ok with what I have done with my life so far.

By this time he had found something more interesting to do such as pick lint off the living room floor.

I have written about death here before. I wrote about it when a close friend was diagnosed with cancer. Back then I was reflecting on what I would do to help him stave off death. On the train yesterday I was thinking about attending his funeral.

It occured to me that the measure of a relationship is whether you would attend somebody's funeral. Especially if it were difficult for you to do so. I have friends scattered all over the globe and I wonder if they died, would I attend their funeral? Would they attend mine?

Not Your Usual Funeral*

I think it's a handy marker for where your friendships are at. Family deaths rank in another category; it's not usually a question whether you would attend or not unless rancor had reigned for too long.

Who would you make the effort to go say goodbye to? If you had no money and couldn't get time off work? Which friends would you still go for?



*Pic - "Elisha Mitchells' Funeral" by Ian Brownlee