I have been out dancing many times over the past four years, but I have never had a night like this one before.
I tend to dance with everyone. Women of all skill levels. I like dancing with beginners because they have no expectations. I like dancing with people the same level as me, because it makes things easier. I like dancing with experts because I can often learn something new.
My main goal when dancing with anyone is to share fun with the person who is dancing with me. I want them to enjoy dancing and to feel that coming back to dance again would be a good thing. Especially dancing with me.
I have almost no expectations when I first start dancing with someone. I feel them out as we go and try to see where their comfort level lies. Do they know the basics like the cross body lead and the right turn? How good are they at following? Are they easily confused or frustrated when trying something new? Are they actually paying attention to me or are they focusing on who knows what?
Within the first minute, I have usually (95% of the time) figured all of that out. I have certain moves of various skill levels and I use them as a test to see where the partner lies on the dancing skill spectrum. Some girls like to build low expectations from the start by telling the guy that she is just beginning. I still go through the same process. People have differing ideas of “beginner”. I even go through it with people whom I have seen dance with other people. Just because girl X dances well with one guy does not mean that she will dance well with me.
And that brings me to tonight. You see, every now and then a person can find a partner with whom they just “click.” Moves just come easier. You really feel a connection with that person. It has nothing to do with whether you get along with that person outside of dancing. It has relatively little to do with skill level or experience. It is more a combination of energy and style.
Tonight I met the best partner that I have ever had.
I did things with her that I have not done with anyone else. I just followed what felt natural and the next thing we knew, we were doing moves that up until tonight I would have said were beyond me. And it is not like she was suggesting them or leading me through them. No. I lead them. I just was not thinking about it. It all just happened.
I can partially “blame” the band. I had never heard them before, but they were phenomenal. But it was more than that. It really was the connection that we had. I felt it a bit when we danced a merengue early in the night. Then we danced a cumbia. Next time was a cha cha. Then a salsa. I danced with other people in between these dances, but somehow she kept coming back to me, because we both could just tell, this partner was fun! Finally, near the end of the night after most of the crowd had left, I asked her to dance another salsa with me. It blended into a second salsa and before it was over, we had impressed everyone. We had a small crowd of people watching us, including the bartenders and the bouncer. The latter had been sitting and chatting with my partner’s cousin and I heard him say to her, “Owen has always been a good dancer but I have never seen him do that before!”
After the songs were over, I had to talk to her. “I have to know. You said that you live far away … how far are we talking? I would hate to find out that my perfect dance partner lives in New South Wales Australia!”
She lives in Montana.
She might come next weekend for my birthday, but after that she’s heading back. I hope that if she comes next Saturday, I’ll be able to dance as well and that we’ll have as much fun!