Welcome back to Part Dos. If you haven’t already done so I suggest reading Part Uno first.
Bringing this back to the train ride where the inspiration for this two-part blog post occurred, while listening to salsa with my iPods blocking out the sound, within a minute or so the music was coursing through my veins. Despite having been away from salsa dancing for almost 20 years, the pathway to which music passes are still intact and my feet started moving.
Here’s the thing, Japanese are so reserved if I were to really follow my instinct I would be dancing, shining and doing the same moves I learned in class causing stares and perpetuating the myth of the crazy “Gaijin,” that is foreigner. After having overcome my fear of dancing in public those many years ago in New York I would have been tearing it up on the Chuo Line. I also think age plays a factor. With less at stake as a person I really could care less what people think. But out of respect and following the societal rules of reservedness I simply began dancing on the inside. That is evoking the memories of those classes in which I got the moves down perfectly with a partner who was totally in sync like two souls meant to be together. Incidentally, in my mind this was not my girlfriend from the Cuban club. She and I eventually ended. Who knew dancing could be the demise to a relationship?
Having personally relegated myself to mind dancing for about fifteen minutes I found a way–The movement of the train. I found that I could outwardly dance by syncing my dancing with the movement of the train. This allowed me to remain reserved by masking my dancing. Of course, I was limited to the simple New York style of stepping on two without shines and turns, but at least I was dancing.
With my stop coming up, I went back to standing like everyone else and allowed the music to come to an end aurally and internally bringing myself back from those days in New York City where I confronted and overcame one of my biggest fears.
In the end, these Swedish hips never did let go to the extent of my South American counterparts, but I still found freedom.