Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Disco Diva.

I wish I could dance. Really float and rise and fall on the balls of my feet, my partner guiding me across a polished dance floor as we glide effortlessly to the music. Unfortunately the reality of it is, is that I spent my teenage life during the 80’s, when weekends meant going to a disco. I didn’t know any better at the time; in fact I abhorred Come Dancing and all these cheesy grins, fake tans and billion sequins. What I was after was a bit of John Travolta thrusting his very tight jeans in my direction. One rarely got John Travolta or any approximation thereof in any disco on a Saturday night in Plymouth. It mattered not a jot because what you did get was dry ice, lasers, the throb of the bass and the exciting anticipation that only being young, free and single, mingled with a throng of unfamiliar bodies can provide.
Some weekends were better than others; the curling tongs had worked, the pimple had remained at bay, your mum had given you an extra couple of quid and, if you were lucky or, unlucky depending on the poor sod desperate to pull, several drinks were bought for you. If feeling benevolent one might capitulate by the end of the evening and allow him the slow dance but you were really holding out for the cool boy with his asymmetric hair and blazer with the sleeves rolled up. I can remember one such heady time; one summer in the mid 80’s when I was in a disco on Union Street. Mags and I had spent hours getting ready but she was always edgier than I, whereas she looked like Madonna on a night out, all ripped clothes, big hair and big make-up, I looked more like Lady Diana on a day out at the Polo, with my Laura Ashley blouse, floral skirt and shiny, flicked hair. I’d lost her pretty early on in the night and now, whilst studiously trying to avoid the guy who’d bought me a couple of martini and lemonades, I needed her moral support. There was none forthcoming as, tripping over the bodies on the dance floor I spied her through the fog, snogging some very unsuitable, suitor, a pink Mohican sitting atop his head. I sighed and sucked on my cherry. The tempo of the music changed to the ‘slow song’ and I willed myself to be somewhere else, when suddenly the boy I’d clocked before with the said lopsided hair and rolled up jacket sleeves grabbed my hand and pulled me into the middle of the floor.
“Zoom, just one look and then we’re on the moon”, Fat Larry’s Band sang and I looked into his eyes. Both his arms were firmly around my lower back and as was custom in those days, mine were tightly around his neck. Before I could ask his name, he kissed me. Long and deep and never ending. It continued beyond the record finishing, beyond everyone going home, beyond Mags trying to drag me away. He never said “I’ll text you”, or “I’ll email you” or indeed “I’ll meet you on Facebook”. He just remained forever in that part of your memory that you like to take down from the shelf and savour from time to time.
This is where I was last week, lost in thought at a formal mess dinner. We’d eaten, we’d drunk the loyal toast, Hubby had made his speech. We’d all behaved ourselves impeccably and we withdrew to the bar and dance floor area. My feet weren’t too sore as I’d taken some ibuprofen before I went out. A sure sign of aging – not to deal with a hangover but to tolerate the agony of high-heels. Hubby suggested we dance and for a couple of numbers we bopped away as we have done for decades, our dance style unchanging. Puffed out, we returned to the bar. We’d brought some very dear friends with us as guests and as I took another sip of my wine, the husband grabbed my hand and once again I was back on the dance floor in the 80’s. No! He didn’t kiss me! But boy could he dance and the unexpected pleasure of being twirled and dipped and spun and turned and dipped again until my hair brushed the dance floor was comparable to that unexpected pleasure of being singled out all those years ago. Warm, pleasant memories. The stark reminder that I’m living in the here and now though was only too apparent the morning after the night before when I found bleeding toes and a bruise on my chin and remembered with a groan, I’d been dropped, mid dip. The ibuprofen had worked. It had numbed my feet and evidently, softened my fall.


DL said...

Coincidence! Looking through my wardrobe I came across an old jacket. Doesn't fit any more, and sleeves strangely crumpled. But memories came flooding back of heady nights out in Plymouth thirty years or so ago...

Best wishes,
D. x

Alice Band said...

Was it you DL????

It's just me said...

Oooo. Very interesting.

DL said...