Can a 57 year-old non-dancing woman rock the funk? At this point in my life, I can answer that: completely, absolutely, irrevocably no. But retirement is for finding out how many of these impossibilities are just things I haven’t yet accomplished. So start with the twist or even the swing, you say. But I have my reasons for starting like the youngsters. In the process, I hope to get fit in a way that’s gratifying to a woman my age. If you are also a woman in her mid-fifties, or know one, you know what that means. I want to lose the arm flap.
My friend Alice, who really does live in Wonderland, thought I could keep up with her dance class. She invited me along one night to what she called, ‘just a lot of moving around.’ First, I should explain myself. I’m a bit proud of my fitness. Though not world-class or obsessive (that would be Stanley,) I’ve walked my way to a general state of good physical health. At a little less than 30 miles in a week at a good pace, my leg muscles bulge, while under my arms there is too much waggle.
The Funk looks like it might help me, because I want my arms to look like they are teenagers. If you tell me that I am mixing my metaphors, or at the very least making too great a comparative leap, I can only say that it’s not you who has to look at these upper arms and make a decent plan of action.
Even at first glance, I was prepared for a fun class. Alice, for one thing. Then the other participants lined up: twenty women of all ages, some with their twelve year-old daughters, dressed in a comfy version of whatever they had on all day. They looked like they had worked hard for 10 hours, left the dishes to soak and decided, on the spur of the moment, that since it was 6:30 in the evening, they really should dance.
During the entire 45 minutes, not one woman did the same movement at the same time as anyone else. But everyone moved. By twenty minutes into the session, I was sweating and out of breath, both in a good way.
Dancing had left me behind after high school. Because I’d lived in Colombia, I’d often listened to Latin music and did what I thought was supposed to be done to it. Now is my chance to really find out if my theoretical dance moves will turn me into something that will embarrass my sons. I want to leave that arm flap behind in my fifties, like I once left dancing back in high school. I’m ready to see if I can rock that funk. Work it!