This is the second in a series of recollections of favorite dancing memories. You can read more about why I’m writing about this here (along with an account of our very first public dance).
In 2011, we were vacationing in San Diego and found ourselves swing dancing on the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Midway, during a fundraiser for the YMCA. The event had a WWII-era theme and many of the attendees were dressed in fashions of the Forties. (I have underwear that’s approximately that old, but that was the extent to which we participated in that aspect of the soirée.)
It’s hard to overhype the allure of dancing to a live big band atop one of the most storied battleships in history, surrounded by equally historic warbirds and looking out over San Diego Harbor at night. We were a bit bemused by how few people actually danced, but weren’t complaining since the temporary dance floor laid on the deck was on the smallish side. We still occasionally had to slip off that floor and onto the deck itself, and dancing around those huge steel rivets just added to the special ambiance of the night.
Attendees at this event also got a private guided tour of the carrier-turned-museum, and that was icing on the cake.
This was one of our first experiences with out-of-town “dancing in the wild,” as we like to call it, and it’s a very liberating feeling to know that while you won’t necessarily dance as though no one is watching, you can certainly dance as though no one you know or will likely ever see again is watching.
As a non-dance-related aside, we also got a reminder of the difference between the economy of West Texas and, well, the rest of the [non-Texas] nation. Despite having a population of approximately ten times that of Midland, the fundraiser brought in only a fraction of what we typically see around here. We’ve been blessed, and we seem to have a generous population who realizes it.