Surprisingly, when you consider how I was completely dead to the world last Monday, I was actually able to leave my room after another competition! It took a lot of willpower, but I had some pretty big incentives (namely that I have two essays due by Thursday and knew that the library would be the most efficient place to study).
Thank goodness that the coaches left at 7:45 am for the Warwick competition that was actually in Birmingham instead of at 5:45 like last week. I was actually able to see daylight before we hustled inside the ballroom! I was really nervous for this competition. Dan and I learned a brand new quickstep routine in an hour on Friday, practiced it for another hour on Saturday, and expected to perform it on Sunday. Some would say stupidity, others would say confidence, I would say masochism. But all in all, we both feel like we danced the best quicksteps we have in a competition yet, so it didn’t matter that we didn’t place 🙂 We also tied for 7th with another Oxford couple for Waltz which means we didn’t make the finals for that either. We were honestly surprised because we felt like we danced very strongly, but you can never be sure of what the judges are looking for. Needless to say Dan and I are going to work our behinds off in Ballroom until the next comp. Well, we’ll be doing the same in Latin so basically we are just extremely motivated to work really hard.
Latin went better than ballroom. I switched dresses this week because after looking through the photos from last weekend, I realized just how short my dress was (oops) and that it wouldn’t show any hip motion so a new dress was a better idea. At least I now have a super awesome dress to wear in general! With tights of course. I was more worried for Latin than Ballroom because after we looked at the tape of last week’s dance, Neil completely corrected my technique. Now normally that would be a good thing, but because of the holiday last week, I didn’t have the chance to get more feedback from Neil on how the new technique was working. So I was basically going in blind. And freaked out. And nervous. And thanking my lucky stars for Dan being cool and collected. After we made it through the first round, I stopped freaking out. I figured that if my technique was really horrible and I wasn’t doing what Neil told me, we wouldn’t have been marked. So obviously Neil was right as always. Even more evidence…we finaled in Cha Cha and Jive!!!! We didn’t final in Cha Cha last week so Dan and I were over the moon. Looked like it was going to be a Latin day! With the support of the entire main team telling us how great our Jive was looking, we went out on the floor and had a blast, ending up 5th in Cha and 3rd in Jive 🙂 And securing a spot on the Oxford F team again which made the first division in the Team Match 🙂 🙂
Now at first I was a little sad because I felt we danced a lot better than last week yet we placed lower. Then I remembered that Cambridge, Cardiff, and Imperial were all at the competition this weekend and weren’t last weekend so it was a much harder field to compete against. And Dan and I hadn’t practiced together all week. And it is often a matter of subjective judges. And it doesn’t matter…we had fun and felt like our dancing improved and that is the important part.
After all the awards were given out, the room went crazy with more Macarena, conga lines, cha cha slide, Grease songs, Time Warp, Cotton-Eyed Joe…the list goes on and on. It’s awesome how we can all just blow off steam as an entire dance room and have fun together. Then it was time to sit out in the freezing cold waiting for the coaches back to Oxford. By 1:30 am, I was in my nice warm bed, showered, motivated, and ready to bring on 8th week. I can’t believe it has passed this fast already. Paris in 5 days, home in 9, and I’m already homesick for Oxford.