Saturday, July 08, 2006

Portland Dance Festival

The last few days have been incredible. Rachel was back in town Thursday, so I went over to her house for a movie and some awesome girl-talk. Me best bud... it still amazes me that we're friends after more than half our lives, through the middle school and high school drama, through college... we even lived together and managed to get along great the whole time (oh I'm sure there are times we wanted to kill each other, but always in a loving kind of way). I miss her when she's gone. So Thursday night was a real treat.

Got up early Friday and drove to Hillsboro to Emily's house. I'm a small-town kid with limited driving experience (I've only driven to Salem five or six times by myself), and I always had my nose in a book if we were on the road very long as I was growing up, so I don't really know how to get anywhere north of Salem. I printed out fantastic directions from one of my many mapping programs (I have several, seeing as how I am a valid, although amateur, cartographer)... and plotted the route on my map. I-5 to 217 to 8 to some other little road... should have been perfect. But somewhere between 217 and 8 I ended up on 26 headed out to Glencoe. I didn't really mind - and I wasn't lost. The farmland and scenery astounded me, so much beauty, the golden hills of grass cut in neat rows waiting for the bailers to go through and make perfect blocks of sweet-smelling wonderfulness... so I called Emily and told her where I was. I maintain, I wasn't lost. I just didn't know how to get from where I was to where I needed to be. I found the correct exit again, and then turned north instead of south... and found myself not where I needed to be again... it was not a good experience. After two solid hours of driving, I finally arrived. More girl-talk, good food, and a movie later, we were ready to go dancing!

I could never live in Portland. They have too many stoplights. Not to mention too many people trying to drive on streets not made for that many, and then slowly... we got stuck in 6pm Friday evening traffic headed out to the airport. Sucky times. Oh, and you can't really see the stars in a city like that. I love being able to walk out into my backyard in the evening, look up, and see the literal millions of stars in the sky.

Finally got to the Sheraton Hotel, paid our money, and wandered around trying to find the swing dancing room. At least we found a bunch of our OSU friends there - and they're good dancers, so we were very happy they were there. Come to find out, the swing dancing was all West Coast Swing, which neither of us do to any extent. The swing room was being used for lessons, and we wandered around for a while until we figured out that the Country Two-Step room was actually Two-Step and WCS together. Emily and I sat for a while until some other friends joined us... put in a couple requests for a waltz or Nightclub Two-Step (things we actually know), and had a few fun dances. Several guys I didn't know asked me to West Coast with them... I've done a few workshops and danced with a couple guys at school, but I really don't know what I'm doing. He pulled me onto the dance floor and I was dancing! Sweet guy, really cute too. He only led easy moves, thankfully, and I had no trouble following. Later, he competed in the Pro-Am Jack and Jill and made it into the finals! I think it is safe to say I can West Coast passably... sorta... :)

We left around 10pm, drove home, finished our movie, and slept. Hard. I slept ten hours. Must have needed it... but OH! This weekend has already been so much fun! Wouldn't trade it for anything. :)

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