Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Salsa Celtica in Tarland

It was a local holiday weekend so this is me just back to work today.

On Friday night, FL and I went out.

Out! For the evening! For only the second time in the four years we have lived together with my children at home! We left my son in charge, with strict instructions on his role as a “babysitter” – i.e. make it a happy experience for the child (let her choose the tv programmes to watch!), don’t drink all the Pepsi in the house and go next door if you set the house on fire.

We went to see Salsa Celtica in Tarland Community Hall. Notably the only other time we have had a babysitter, it was for the same event two years ago – woo hoo! I first saw this band at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London. It’s a ten-piece mix of Latin and Scottish musicians. They make a huge sound that defies you not to dance. In London, there was dancing in the aisles. In Tarland… there was dancing in the village square! The drummer led the audience Pied-Piper-style into the silent empty streets of this sleepy Scottish village – amazing! Everyone had brought their own bottle and picnic, and the floor of the hall was transformed into a salsa ceilidh, with lots of stamping and clapping and twirling. A couple of backless dresses. A few highland flings. Lots and lots of fun! The lead singer, Lino Rocha, is a bit of a babe-magnet and breaks into a deep-down-and-dirty rap over the bongos, while the bagpipes skirl, the fiddle fairly flies, the banjo strums and the saxophone honks – wow! My only regret was that Toby Shippey, the band leader, didn’t play his trumpet, so there was a top note missing. But the guest keyboard player was Roland Perrin – a really serious jazz pianist. In Tarland Village Hall?! They are on tour across the UK now – go and see them! Buy their CDs!

There was added poignancy for us. FL didn’t have the energy to dance, and I felt unable to abandon him on the sidelines, so found myself wistfully watching the dancers until the final song, when I got him up on his feet with me. He wanted me to go up on the stage when Lino called for people to come up and dance with him. Err… no! FL told me he wanted to see me “go” – to show him that I would “move on” after he is gone. It was a conversation he continued yesterday. And I explained that there was time enough for that after he is gone. That for now, it’s all about us enjoying the time we have left together. “You mean it’s none of my business what you do after I’m gone?” Yes, I suppose that’s true. He wanted to make plans for me, for when I am left alone. And I feel strongly that that will be another phase of my life, which I don’t want him to “make plans” for. We need to get on with living in the here and now.


Midsummer night's knitter said...

Maybe 'making plans' is part of the 'here and now'?

Mary Lou said...

IT sounds like a magical evening, sadness included. Being here now is very hard sometimes, isn't it?

Helen said...

I came over today after you left a comment on Jean's blog and have been enjoying your archives. I think I saw Salsa Celtica playing in Buchanan Street in Glasgow in the mid '90s - is that possible or did I dream it?

I'm with you, I don't think making plans is part of the here and now; not from personal experience but from observation. And I think 'moving on' is overestimated. But I haven't actually had to have those conversations so it's easy for me to say. It can't be easy for you.

Have you got a copy of Knitting Nature yet? I would be happy to lend you mine; us Gaughan fans have to stick together.