Advent Thought For The Day: 14

December 14th: Keep Dancing

I’m now comfortably over the halfway point in my advent adventure. As is my wont, I blundered into it without really considering the time and effort involved, but since I’ve come this far, I am determined to continue. So far this series has been an eclectic mix of commentary on subjects as diverse as the weather, Christmas carols and, inevitably, Brexit. I have tended to decide what I will write on the spur of the moment, rather than planning ahead. This works perfectly well until I have a mental block, so I do keep a couple of ideas up my sleeve. Any further suggestions will be gratefully received. Thank you to everyone for your words of encouragement.

The run up to Christmas is for me a frantic and sometimes lonely affair. I am caught in a pincer movement between an increasingly busy work schedule and the escalating pressure to have my home ready for Christmas. I am sure I am not the only person who finds the build up to the big day less idyllic in reality than it is in my imagination. A long commute does not help, taking a big chunk out of my day. And then I can’t resist setting myself extreme tasks to do: decorating six Christmas trees is not what a normal person does. I should, perhaps, sell tickets for people to come and see them.

This weekend offers a welcome break from festive preparations in the shape of the Strictly Come Dancing final. I have watched avidly since series two, and now it’s as much part of my autumn / winter routine as buying a new sweater and turning the central heating on. These days I barely watch any television, but on Saturday nights from September you’ll find me in my basement ‘snug’ with a steam iron in one hand and a G&T in the other, watching the pro-celebrity partners showcase their heel leads, chasse capes and botafogos whilst I press my collars and cuffs. When I do watch television it is for escapism and amusement. I can’t be bothered with ‘noir’ or anything that requires a lot of brain power. Strictly is pure joy: glitzy, glamorous, a little bit funny and a little bit emotional. All the finalists are good this year, so I shan’t mind who wins. It will be nice to share a few glasses of Prosecco with friends and award our own scores using make-shift paddles.

Like playing the piano, dancing is one of the things I wish I had learned to do when I was younger. I know it’s possible to learn at any age, but I always want to be the best at everything I do. I think it’s highly unlikely that I’d ever be of a standard to perform at The Wigmore Hall or Blackpool Tower Ballroom and so therefore I don’t try. This is probably not the best attitude, but I figure I should build on what I am already good at rather than spread myself too thin. Nevertheless, witnessing others play and dance well gives me enormous enjoyment.

Whatever you have planned for the third weekend in advent, I hope you enjoy lots of fun and merriment. Keep Dancing! TFG.