Unexpected praise

Today was class No. 3 in my return to “real” ballet.

By that I mean being back at my original studio dancing in a company-level open class.

Other than our young male professional who dances with the company, and a former company dancer who has returned after graduating from college … I am the only “recreational” adult.

The rest are teenagers who have professional dreams.

I am basically at the bottom of the class, but I don’t mind. I love the pace.

My pirouettes have not returned since the layoff. I think Mr. O let them slide today.

The rest of the class? For a person who has been away as long as me, it went pretty well.

We danced a combination with balance’s in a circle with a waltz turn. It ended with a pique arabesque that required us to be on a long balance.

I got singled out for my effort, which was really cool,

And it didn’t stop there.

There are days when I don’t get cut any slack even when I’m the only old rec dud dancing with company wonders.

I made the mistake of stopping too early during a petite allegro combination (Glissade jete, glissade jete in the other direction, pas de bouree quatre, quatre, royale for this keeping score at home).

My weakness is that I depend on watching others too much, which is why I stopped too soon.

Mr. O called me on it,

I had to do the combination solo in front of the company wonders.

“I know you know the steps,” he said. “You don’t need to watch anyone.”

Maybe not flawless, but I danced the combination … and to my shock … I was on time with the music.

“See there, I knew you could do,” Mr. O said.

The combination ended with applause from my much more talented classmates.

At least every once in a while, I can dance like I don’t have two left feet,

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