Out of the Comfort Zone Pt. 1–Ceilidh

All right, so one of my biggest promises to myself before I got on a plane and flew my way over to the UK was that I wasn’t going to let my usual shyness and timidity get in the way of anything exciting that I wanted to do while I was here. Right away, Harlaxton put that promise to the test, and I’m happy to say I passed with flying colors.

Last night, they had a band come in to teach us several dances from different countries (Ireland, Russia, Isreal, Scotland, etc). This event was called a Ceilidh (pronounced Kaylee, and having Celtic roots if my information is correct).  Basically, it was a bunch of us silly Americans who generally just sort of bob about to music learning to dance in a set number of steps. It provided a lot of laughs and a lot of opportunities to meet new people–as you cascaded past them in a frenzy of dance, or perhaps smacked them upside the head (sorry, random guy!) whilst trying to “wring the dishrag”. Regardless, it was one of those things that high school Amanda would have secretly wanted to do, but avoided doing because she would have had to TOUCH people, get up close and personal with people, and be a bit more outgoing than she’s generally comfortable with.

I’ll be honest. It was a little rough at first, being expected to grab hands not only with my chosen partner, but also with several random people the dance moves thrust me upon in time (lovely people, all of them). But it was well worth that first bit of awkwardness. My UE roommate, Lesley, was my partner for most of the experience, as there were not enough men by a long shot, and that helped. All in all, it was a lot of fun, even if there’s no way I could reproduce any of those dances without being talked through it again!

I got rather out of breath, a bit hot and sweaty, and frankly had more physical contact than I’ve had in months, but it was full of laughs–since we were all equally clueless–and entertainment, as it felt a bit like being in Pride and Prejudice at some points and playing musical chairs (only with partners) at others.

With that, which may well be my shortest blog post yet, I’m off to do a load of homework in preparation for my journey to London this weekend!


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