True stories with a twist!

DANCE AND DRAMA

WHAT A HAPPY GROUP WE WERE AS WE SHARED A GLORIOUS AFTERNOON IN NEW YORK. IT HAD BEEN A “CLICK, CLICK CLICK” DAY. EVERYTHING WENT AS IT
WAS SUPPOSED TO GO: AS VIBRANT AND EXCITING A DAY AS WE BALLET LOVERS COULD HAVE IMAGINED. WE GLOWED IN THE BEAUTY OF SEEING THE AMERICAN BALLET THEATER’S EXQUISITE PRODUCTION OF GISELLE.

WHEN IT WAS OVER WE ANTICIPATED THE TRAIN RIDE BACK HOME, PREPARED
FOR OUR USUAL “POST MORTUM” DISCUSSION.

“DID YOU NOTICE HOW TUNED THE ORCHESTRA LEADER WAS TO THE DANCERS?  WHEN ‘GISELLE’ PERFORMED A DIFFICULT SERIES OF PIROUETTES HE SLOWED THE TEMPO JUST A COUPLE OF BEATS TO ALLOW HER TO ENTHRALL US WITH HER TECHNIQUE. THAT EXTRA TURN BROUGHT THE HOUSE DOWN!”

“YES, AND AT THE END OF THE BALLET WHEN MARIA BYSTROVA WAS GIVEN TWO BOUQUETS SHE DID SOMETHING I’VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE. USUALLY A
BALLERINA TAKES ONE FLOWER FROM HER BOUQUET AND HANDS IT TO HER
PARTNER. BUT MARIA PLACED BOTH BOUQUETS AT DAVID HALLBERG’S FEET”.

“I HAD GOOSE BUMPS!”

“IT WAS SO ROMANTIC, AND THEN WHEN HE HUGGED….”

“PLEASE, MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION”, CAME A SUDDEN LOUD VOICE FROM
THE FRONT OF THE TRAIN. WE LOOKED UP TO SEE A YOUNG WOMAN PLEADING
TO ALL WHO WOULD LISTEN, “I AM SO EMBARRASSED TO ASK FOR HELP. BUT
I’M DESPERATE AND I DON’T KNOW WHAT ELSE TO DO. I LOST MY WALLET
WITH ALL MY MONEY AND CREDIT CARDS AND NOW I HAVE NO WAY TO GET MY
THREE CHILDREN AND MYSELF BACK HOME. PLEASE HELP ME OUT. I NEED JUST
ENOUGH FOR FOUR TRAIN TICKETS.”

WHAT A SHOCKING JOLT, JARRING US BACK TO REALITY. GONE WERE THE
DAYDREAMS OF RELIVING A GRACEFUL ART FORM, REPLACED BY A REALITY OF
AN UNFORTUNATE YOUNG MOTHER TRYING TO GET HER FAMILY SAFELY BACK
HOME. HEARTS WERE TOUCHED BY HER PLIGHT AS WALLETS APPEARED FROM
SEATS THROUGHOUT THE CAR. SHE COLLECTED THE MONEY, THANKED EVERYONE AND LEFT.

NOW OUR CONCENTRATION CHANGED. THIS INCIDENT CREATED THE OPPORTUNITY FOR EACH OF US TO CONFRONT AND ADMIT ABSENT MINDED WAYS WE HAVE SABOTAGED OURSELVES. GOING TO A SHOW ON THE WRONG DATE, MISPLACING CAR KEYS OR LOCKING THEM IN THE CAR, FORGETTING WHERE WE PARKED THE CAR. IT WAS EASY TO COMMISERATE WITH THE WOMAN’S SITUATION.

ENDING THE DAY ON THIS NEGATIVE TONE WAS WAS NOT WHAT WE INTENDED, BUT IT HAD BEEN A WONDERFUL DAY ANYWAY.

WHEN THE LOVELY SUMMER DAYS ENDED AND FALL RETURNED MY HUSBAND AND I PLANNED A VISIT TO FRIENDS WHO HAD RECENTLY SOLD THEIR NEW JERSEY HOME AND BOUGHT A MANHATTAN CONDOMINIUM.

WE TRIED TO BE SUPPORTIVE AND COMPLIMENTARY TO THEM, BUT WERE QUITE SURPRISED AT THE NEW CONSTRAINTS ON THEIR LIFESTYLE. THEY NOW HAD A SMALL LIVING SPACE, MINISCULE STORAGE FACILITIES AND LACK OF PRIVACY. NEIGHBOR’S SOUNDS CAME CAREENING THROUGH THE WALLS. AND THERE WAS ALL KINDS OF OTHER NOISE AS WELL.  ENDLESS NOISE. AMBULANCES, FIRE TRUCKS, POLICE SIRENS WENT BY THEIR
APARTMENT DAY AND NIGHT.

WHEN WE WERE ON THE TRAIN ON OUR WAY BACK HOME WE DISCUSSED THEIR
LIFESTYLE CHOICES; COULD WE MAKE SUCH A CHANGE? WOULD WE WANT TO?
WHAT WOULD WE BE WILLING TO GIVE UP? OUR SPACE? OUR PRIVACY? OUR QUIET ENVIRONMENT? IT IS TRUE THAT THE CITY OFFERS
RICH CULTURAL OPPORTUNITIES. AND THE POSSIBILITY OF WALKING EVERYWHERE WOULD BE EASIER THAN HAVING TO DRIVE EVERYWHERE. NOT ONLY THAT BUT IN NEW YORK EVERYTHING CAN BE DELIVERED.

WE WERE DEEP IN CONVERSATION WHEN A LOUD “EXCUSE ME, PLEASE” RANG
THROUGH THE TRAIN. “MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION FOR A MOMENT? I’VE GOT A TERRIBLE PROBLEM AND I NEED TO ASK FOR YOUR HELP. I LOST MY WALLET AND NOW I HAVE NO MONEY OR CREDIT CARDS TO GET MY THREE CHILDREN AND MYSELF BACK HOME. PLEASE HELP ME RAISE JUST ENOUGH FOR TRAIN FARE FOR THE FOUR OF US.”

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