01 August 2013


It took a Scot to get me to participate in a ceilidh. When Paul got married he had warned us, the guests, that dancing wasn't optional. And I had been pleased; I had never done anything like this before, but I loved it! (Look here for an idea! Different event, same concept.) So when my York colleague Abi (who plays in a ceilidh band herself) rallied people for such an event on a Sunday night I was easily convinced.

I had prepared the wrong way; I had gone for a walk of several hours. I should know to save my feet before a dancing event! But well, one can dance with sore feet. I met up with the usual suspects: Abi, Tom and Owain (Louise was in Manchester and couldn't make it) and together we went to the venue. At 8 sharp they started playing. They were good! This was going to be fun. And then the melodeon player (no, I didn't know it was called that either) called the first dance. So off we were!

 The ceilidh band

It was good I had practiced once; I am quite good at forgetting what move's next, and some of those present are rather good, and make you feel inadequate (unwillingly, I trust). But most went well. And it was great fun! Of them men we had brought in ourselves I knew in advance they were spiffing, but the complete strangers were enjoyable dancing partners as well. And also the ladies you sometimes dance with, either because that is the idea, or because there weren't enough men to keep all couples bi-gendered. Gender identity is a bit fluid during a ceilidh!

I danced the first dance. And the second. And the third. I was having fun! And it seemed to show; if the geography men didn't want to dance there was always some stranger to ask me. So I must have been among the sweatiest in the room. And I was loving it, but I was aware of time passing, and of a busy week ahead. When Owain and Tom left, the first because he was tired as he had already cycled for 90 miles that day, and the other because he had to get up at silly o'clock the next morning to go on fieldwork, I considered going too. But I was asked to dance again, so I didn't. But after that dance I managed to detach myself from the floor. One of the chaps mentioned this happens every month. I hope to be back soon!

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