Saturday, October 12, 2013

I'm Toasted

Tuesday night we started doing a combination involving a sequence of assemblés: two devant, two derrière with the other foot, two a la seconde, finishing with tombé, pas de bourrée to change direction. My leg strength is pretty good, so jumps like assemblés are kinda fun. I sometimes have trouble remembering long sequences without doing it several times, but this was a short sequence. With all that in my favor it shouldn't be much of a surprise that I'd do well with this sequence. And everything was going well until the last pair of assemblés derrière when the instructor called out my name in a shocked tone that I'd expect if I'd pinched her butt. It stopped me dead in my tracks. The only thing I can think of is that she was surprised to see me doing so well. If it was something else I don't know what it could be, and she never explained why she called my name.

This morning didn't start well. The allergy meds I took left me feeling wired and shaky. I also felt stiff even after my 15 minute pre-class warmup (it turned cold and rainy here this week). There were several new faces, and the room was moderately crowded. The frappé combination was three frappés on the beat followed by a double piqué. Normally I don't have too much trouble with double piqués, but today I couldn't do even a single in any direction with any speed. Weird. My balance was pretty good, but with any serious effort my muscles trembled visibly. Might have been the meds.

What is it with doing steps backward? We've been doing this in the Sunday class, and today we had a backward pas de bourrée. I can do them frontward (back-side-front) with almost no thought but the backwards (front-side-back) ones are baffling. I'm going to have to practice them on my own.

I picked up the center combinations pretty well, which was good because I got stuck in the front row. Not voluntarily, but when your classmates are all fighting to be in the back the only place left is in the front. We didn't repeat the assemblé combination from Tuesday; instead, we did glissade, assemblé (over), assemblé (under), assemblé (over), and repeat. Wow, was that fun! My biggest problem was not running over the others in my 4-dancer group as we crossed the floor. We also repeated the sequence of four quick passé relevés followed by tendu, chassé to fourth, and a pirouette en dedans. This is starting to feel easier, and the result is my pirouettes are more erect and balanced (at least until I get tired, when they fall apart again). We do this facing the mirror, and I find it weird watching myself. Not the least of which is because in my head I'm still in my 20s, but the body I see in the mirror is a lot older than that.

After class I had a half hour break, then a 75 minute "Stretch" class. Although I can't say I enjoy the Stretch classes, I think they're helping. By the end of the day today, though, I felt wiped out. I grabbed some lunch, drove home, and crawled into bed for a couple of hours.

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