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So You Think You Can Dance?

Nobody has ever accused me of being a dancer. I can tap my toes or sway right and left, but certainly not an all-out, 'move different parts of your body at the same time' dance. The thought horrifies me!

India, on the other hand, is the land of dance and music. It's fascinating to see this so universal in society. A man cycling down the road will be singing happily. Everybody loves to dance and aren't embarrassed to shake a leg in front of friends and strangers alike. A middle class party would be incomplete if there wasn't a dance competition, and everybody participates. Everybody.

Last year our building complex threw a huge Christmas party. Everybody showed up dressed in red. Game and gifts for the kids; festive food for all. And to my amusement and dismay, a massive dance floor with flashy lights and DJ. I could see the future...

The dance competition began with much vigor. All our neighbors danced their hearts out to the latest Bollywood tunes, for the title and glory of Best Dancer in our complex. I tapped my toes, discreetly swayed back and forth. But when they came to drag us to the dance floor, I was in an immediate Fight or Flight situation. Be the Grinch? Blast this Bollywood music. It's both joyful AND triumphant (end modified quote).

India's passion for song and dance is one of its undisputed hallmarks of culture. Our Dekko artisans always work while listening to music or singing to each other. It's a game to see who can cleverly insert song lyrics into conversation, or who can remember all the words to an old song. I love this about Indian culture. How in some of the most unlikely situations, you'll hear a playful tune and see a happy grin. It says something very special to me about the human spirit.

What about you? Are you quick to shake a leg onstage? Or have we lost our heart to dance in the West??

Photo credit: Aaron Nystrom

1 comment

  • Mo

    I’m blaming the knees. But I have been known to shake my groove thing. Indian style is a little more challenging.

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