Category Archives: Competition
So now I must review everything, and go on a new journey of self-discovery.
So I read an excerpt from my bio and realized that the truth that I once knew was gone.
“I absolutely adore the sensations of Europe and I hope to return as often as I can. Travel, love, life and true friendship is the why I write.”
So I haven’t written for a while.
So one day I wrote a story.
“Once upon a time there was an elf who was very small and insignificant. But to one particular princess she meant the world. She was inspired by this elf, and supported her as she grew and grew. Everyone in the Kingdom same to adore the elf. The princess gave the elf riches and she became more and more powerful. Then one day the elf grew so big that she was too scared to be small ever again. So she turned into a wicked witch and cast a spell on the poor princess, and turned her into a tiny elf. The witch trapped the tiny elf in a small room where she tortured her every day. The princess elf wanted so much to be free and spread her wings. She wanted to dance, just like the witch was now dancing and performing. But the wicked witch grew stronger sucking out more and more life out of the little princess elf. To this day the little elf is suffering, waiting for the opportune time to escape and find her independence. This, she thought will have been a lesson because one needs to be courageous, not hide behind another person’s shadow.”
The best virtue of a writer is patience. All will come together soon, and I will be free to write again.
The best advice I can give other writers is to trust your senses. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t ever feel obliged to do it. Ever. Sometimes we need to suffer a little to find the truth. God puts us in a place, we may feel displaced and that the timing isn’t quite right. But this helps us open our eyes to a truth. We are out of our comfort zone, and when we can survive, we can then write about it.
I am presently in a state of change in my life but I am happy because I have the love of my life supporting me and a family who cares. Never publish until all the pieces of the puzzle fit together. This may never happen, and it’s OK – keep writing, but never publish.
THE MIRROR OF THE NIGHT
My two friends and I had an idea to dance in the parks of Paris. But there was a twist. Because of work commitments I could only travel in winter. “We will put on layers of warm clothes, drink wine and tea, and dance to keep warm.” We chatted about as we sorted our costumes and routines. After not having seen each other for a year, we had a lot to catch up on. I lived in Europe for 8 years and left to return home to Darwin, Australia for personal reasons. We’d kept in contact via Skype and I continued to practise the dance moves. Another twist? I could hardly speak German. “French is more important,” Gala insisted. “You are in Europe and you are a dancer!”
At that moment, my heart almost stopped and I took a deep breath to wake up. My living, breathing dream was to be that. And what better place to dance than in Paris! Besides, I had a crash course on French weeks before. Our Bohemian Weekend adventure in Paris was born.
Gala’s apartment in Frankfurt is a beautiful high ceiling old German building. The most memorable pieces were a bookshelf that covered a wall in one of the living rooms that doubled up as a bedroom, dividing the space with a white silk curtain. The large windows and classic white walls gave the sense of more space, and mirrors were placed everywhere in arty ways. A perfect setting that set the mood for Paris that weekend.
The getting there said it all. I was so excited to enter the train and find our seats. Cherishing every moment, of course I had my camera, pencil and pad paper with me. I’d started learning to draw and had some coloured pencils packed in my suitcase that I never used. Oh, well.. next time! Before we knew it, we’d arrived in Paris. I packed much more than usual, because like every woman and dancer, I needed to have a variety of clothes and jewelery to choose from. I stepped out quite awkwardly but found the strength to walk with my luggage in confidence. It is, after all, why suitcases come on wheels!
Upon arriving at our apartment we were greeted by a large beautiful fluffy cat at the counter. “So French,” I thought smiling at the humour. That night, we decided to explore the place where we planned to dance. I had my high black boots on that weren’t the ideal walking shoes for the distances we had to do. I was so relieved to finally arrive, I didn’t mind the dodgy look of the place. It had a charm I couldn’t put into words, possibly because of the colourful lights that reflected on the water.
I saw many young people, especially men loitering about outside a club, surrounded by walls of graffiti art. It was midnight and dark, but the lively atmosphere reassured me as I began to play my finger cymbals Tak-takka-tak, tak-takka-tak, as Gala joined me with the hypnotic dance. Almost forgetting where we were I was startled by a guy who approached us, asking for a light and wanting to know what we were doing. Another guy followed, and thinking the worst we quickly fled.
3 artists, 3 silent voices walked the living streets of Paris late that night back to our apartment, wondering what to do the next day.
What impresses me most about Paris is the way it embraces the good and the ugly, opening avenues for self-expression and beauty. Graffiti art and collages of posters were everywhere, encouraging my senses to explore further. My attempts at speaking French were welcomed by beautiful pouts of moving mouths. How do they do it? Everyone is beautiful in Paris because French beautifies their souls and integrates them into the Parisian unique style.
Paris has a place for everyone with quarters that appeal for every taste. Our quarter was accessible to other famous arty quarters such as the famous hill of Montmartre and in the other direction was Moulin Rouge. We placed our food shopping in plastic bags on the ledge outside our apartment window, which we used as our outdoor fridge and went to bed.
The adjacent building from our apartment block with 3 floors was the focus of my wonderings. There’s a dancer in the middle floor. She is not seen at nights because of the reflections by the lights and so she dances alone.” Gala and I exchanged ideas for writing as we got dressed the next day with colourful layers of skirts, pullovers, scarves, and dangly large earrings. “Oh my gosh!” I cried, “I have no more foundation. “Danke liebe Gott,” Gala replied, “that it will do your skin good to have a break.”
After a long day of preparation we finally arrived at a spot across from the brightly lit Louvre. We chose a tree with a bench surround its trunk, where we made our home for the evening. We were in good spirits as we drank sweet wine and set up the picnic, laughing and joking at the novelty. We had fine cheeses, salad, bread and meats that we ate as we got ready for our performance.
I noticed many men in the distance hanging around looking like shadows but this time I felt safer with just the right amount of traffic nearby not disturb the scene.
I took my cymbals and danced with the Arc de Triomphe du Carroussel as the beautiful background of the outdoor stage. Later, Gala and Lena also started to dance with hypnotic moves that synchronised and mirrored those of a partner. It felt like I was dancing on air.
Later, we walked a little and came to a structure that felt like the Arc de Triomphe du Carroussel. I wouldn’t be able to tell you what the name of it was because I was too involved in the moment to care. “How does the Manchegas song go?” Gala asked as she suddenly halted, a cue for me to sing instantly. “Tarralum, tarralum, tarralum, tum, tum,.. My voice rang so loudly that it felt I was waiting for this moment all my life. The voices of my friends followed with echoing sounds that brought back memories of my time in Albacete, Spain. Listen to the song here: 01-Manchegas de Albacete We walked on after we noticed a security camera and took a train over to the river Seine.
We looked for different backgrounds for our dance by the side of the river. First we stopped at some steps and did fun dance poses, taking lots of photos. I climbed up high on the podium at the bottom of the steps and posed like a dancing statue. Gala wrapped a beautiful red satin scarf around my head that exposed my large earrings and kept me warm. We continued closer to the water, feeling more confident and energetic as the night progressed. We stood on a large wooden plank where the boats dock, making sure we stayed in the middle and not fall into the water. This time, we used our veils to dance to the music from the ipod compact speakers.
The life of people still out and about seemingly pulling us as we walked on, arriving at a bench across Moulin Rouge, a street away from our apartment. We took out the dessert part of what was left of our picnic hamper and some hot lemon tea, sat quietly and people watched.
It wasn’t until later I realised I lost one of my finger cymbals that must have dropped by the side of the river. Losing a piece of dance accessory means a lot to me because of the history attached to it. Nevertheless, I got over it and the greatest souvenir of this trip will stay in my head. Words can’t describe the sensations of a weekend French Bohemian life but I managed to keep these by publishing a book, Poems That Touch The Soul. Paris by night is my favourite and the thought of this theme, along with the river and lights, the surrounding shadows of loitering men, I started to compose ideas of the mirror of the night, my poem later to be titled, Glorified Queen Bee which probably encompasses my impression of the weekend of Bohemian Paris.
The next day was our last, and we explored Paris by day. We bought food from the grocery store which incidentally, was carefully chosen by Gala who was studying to become a naturopath. We walked to the famous hill, Montmartre on our last day to have an outdoor picnic lunch. As we headed towards the river we detoured into different streets, specialty shops, places to eat and a market. Gala helped me choose earrings, practise makeup with the right shades of colours, a tribal dance costume, and other accessories to go with our tribal fusion and American tribal dance style look, bought at chains of budget shops.
I promised myself upon returning to Darwin, Australia that I will do more dance practice because I tend to write more than I dance. I don’t take learning dance routines as seriously as I possible should, or to be kinder to myself, I’m forced to prioritise because of lack of time, and so I fluke the steps and improvise, relying on my reflexes and natural instincts. Gala believes that it is more important to have graceful dance technique and natural style than know the steps. ;) This trip taught me the value of stepping-stones and the giant leaps that are possible by travel because through travel I have gained perspective. Perspective is what helps me see my progress and ways I can improve. My Paris trip didn’t go totally to plan. Certain things happened that could have turned out better but it was a way forward to better things.
Now, I keep positive and hope to one day return to Europe and continue my life there. Until then, I’m enjoying the moments I have. Perhaps my luck will turn and I win this competition, and relive my dream for 6 months of my dancing in Europe. Look at the link here if you’d like to vote for me. A career in education was how I kept focused and justified my travel addiction over the 8 years abroad. “Just one more country,” I told myself. From London to Madrid, to Albacete, then Frankfurt. Finding another job in a different city was as easy as a click of a button on the computer at the local internet café and a phone interview.
“Yes, I speak very good German,” I lied. I was learning at the local school of languages but it would never be enough. And so I found myself in the most unlikely place, Frankfurt, Germany! Throughout my experiences abroad, I have always incorporated dance in everything I did but was always disappointed in myself for not starting at a younger age. It was just a few years ago upon making friends with Gala when my writing matured and realized that in belly dance age is not a barrier and in fact an advantage.
To be honest, I don’t really need this competition to find myself back in Europe. I can do this in time, but I wanted to enter because I think it’s a cool way to express myself and my passion for travel. Little excuses for travel transformed into unique, memorable experiences. A glass of wine in Paris or a tea in London and a why not try a different city, learn the guitar in Spain, another language, and getting totally lost in a big city, pursued me to places I may not have experienced with a travel guide.
Once a traveler always a traveler. In fact, my mind is always traveling because I’m the ideal dreamer. I can create anything from nothing everywhere I go because inspiration is inside me. A traveler can be anyone, and once abroad, of course you then become one! The crunch is that my experiences changed me forever and I can’t remember the person I was. It’s like I disappeared!
Before heading overseas for the first time, I spent weeks packing and unpacking. You might know the scenario.. taking stuff you probably won’t need but taking it anyway. Comfort stuff like maybe a teddy bear memento, a favourite inspirational book to keep you going, a comfort blanket, and enough toiletries to last for months. How things have changed…
- Bohemian Weekend Adventure In Paris (poemsthatdance.com)
- Bohemian Weekend Adventure In Paris (prefacme.wordpress.com)
- Glorified Queen Bee (poemsthatdance.com)
- Paris in 5 1/2 Weeks : Photos Links and Commentary – # 1 (felipeadanlerma.com)
- Paris on a shoestring (eurotunnel.com)
- Jolly Paris (jamesdeeclayton.wordpress.com)
- Paris When it Sizzles (everydaydreamholiday.com)
- Breathtaking Reflections of Paris by Joanna Lemanska (dailypictur.es)
- National Dance Forum 2013 (freiheitdance.wordpress.com)
As you know, I’ve published some poetry books lately, and of which I’ve started a competition. I like to think of fun ways to give my books away, and it gives me pleasure when people enjoy my poems. Of course I can’t give everyone a copy, and so what better way than to share the fun!
It’s too hard to judge the ‘best’ because I feel all photos are special and unique.
And see you on Poems That DanceMaria Grujicic (Malena)
- Free Audio For The Book Poems That Dance (musicdforcommunication.wordpress.com)
- Poems That Dance (prefacme.com)
- Poem by a Non-Poet! Reply ‘Poested’ (prefacme.com)
- A Petaled Poet (poemsthatdance.com)
- Free Audio For The Book Poems That Dance (poemsthatdance.com)
- A Free Audio Of Poems That Dance Inspired By Life, Love & Travel! (poemsthatdance.com)
- A Tentative Dream And A Dance (poemsthatdance.com)
- The Dance That Walked Away (poemsthatdance.com)
- Poem by a Non-Poet! (prefacme.com)
- A Poem And A Dance (poemsthatdance.com)
- Dad, My Favorite March (prefacme.com)
- Sofia Me Ta Kitrina (likeadance.wordpress.com)
- Inspiration Unlimited & A Song For A New Day (prefacme.com)