Blog 7 I’ve Fallen in Love with Pole

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I’m into my third week of Inters and I didn’t think anything could replace trapeze but I love Pole I truly, madly, love Pole.

I do two inter classes a week, two stretch classes, two beginner classes and a dance class. I’m still going to the beginner’s class because there’s some handy stuff in there that I haven’t mastered yet.

The inters class is a world away from beginners and in all honesty there’s not much I can do at the moment. I have a nice Chopper and that’s getting me a little class cred but for the most part I keep my mouth shut and try not to be seen. If the instructor’s eyes are not on you that means you can take a moment to get your breath or summon up courage or try to work out just how the hell you are going to do something.

High school taught me how to avoid eye contact with a teacher, I wish they had given a grade for that because I was a master of avoidance. I knew how to stay at the back of a class and how to keep quiet. Back to present day the pole instructors get to you eventually but a much needed ‘suck a breath’ time is obtained by these strategies.

Taleah from Friday’s class moved to Honours in the Avoidance category. Sarah the instructor was doing the rounds of the room getting each student to demonstrate the move we had just covered. She stood in front of Taleah and said “Show me”. Taleah without batting an eye said “Pass”. “Pass?” I said, “I didn’t know there was a pass option” especially as I was on the pole next to Taleah which meant Sarah came to me next. We all knew the instructor was coming back for Taleah but that didn’t help me much as she was now staring me down. “Show me” She says. “Pass?” I try but it didn’t wash. I think I didn’t deliver it as confidently as Taleah did. Fortunately this was only beginners class so that when I mangled the move I didn’t die I just sort of crumpled.

We did have two other more experienced inters students in the class that night. They took up the back two poles and they were pretty much running a comedy routine for the entire class. I’m hoping they come back, they were fun. Sarah was then coming up with activities for brand new beginners, more experienced beginners and intermediate students, all in the one class. She certainly earns her money.

The Saturday inters class was brilliant. Giang takes this one and she showed us handstands. I couldn’t do them but I have the start of it and now I can work on them. A large part of the problem is that I seem to have lost my nerve. I’m confident that it will come back but it deserted me today.

We also did this very cool static pole stuff and that was brilliant. You got to really throw yourself around on the pole and while I didn’t get very far I know that I have moved forward even just a teeny tiny bit. Static is tricky because you grab the pole but you still need to release enough to spin round. My class mate was whizzing around her pole but not for trashy this week.

I heard today that Sky High is going to hold a showcase next year and friends and family can come. I am very excited by this. I would love to be able to do a routine but what routine is the question? I have wanted to do a routine since I saw Greta Pontarelli on You Tube. She’s a bit of a hero of mine and got me interested in Pole.

The photos from the pole shoot have been coming in and I love them. I may even be willing to up my game next year because the other class mates who also did the photo shoot came up with beautiful costumes and great poses. So I may step out of my comfort zone next year.

Thank you Universe for providing this studio, these instructors and my fellow students who I love to bits.

Blog 5 Horses and Unicorns

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It was a huge week for me in Pole. We had a really fun class in Friday night beginners and I was still pursuing my strategy of displaying strength moves whenever possible to see if that would get me graduated from beginners to intermediate. I figured even if it didn’t, I would still be increasing my strength and practising cool moves. At the end of the lesson Sarah comes up and says can you dive? I said no. She said have you tried? I said no. She said want to? I said yes and then all of a sudden it was put a leg here and squeeze your knees tight and let go of your hands and all of a sudden I was in the middle of a dive. Then Sarah looked straight at me and said “you’re in the intermediate class”. Approximately 8.15pm on July 23rd 2017 I got what I had been hoping for, I had graduated from beginners to intermediate classes. A whole new world was about to open up for me.

Saturday then meant I cancelled my beginner class and enrolled for my first inters class because that’s what we in intermediate call them you know, Inters. My first job was to not go into a total panic for being in a new class, my second job was to remind myself I didn’t have to prove myself to anybody, Sarah had said I could do intermediate and Sarah is the bomb. If she says it, I believe it. I also had Emily instructing and Emily would totally tell me to rack off if she didn’t think I was up to snuff. Emily is one of those gorgeous creatures who is also totally down to earth it’s a really funny combination.

My third job on entering inters was to buy myself a new top from the clothes rack out the front because as we all know if you can’t do something at least look the part.

There were two people in the class. One was superwoman and one was me, I was not deterred. The good thing about two people in a class is that you get lots of attention. The bad thing about two people in a class is that you get lots of attention. I was so tired at the end of the lesson that I drove out of the car park, found a quiet street turned the car off, locked the doors and maybe I slept maybe I passed out. When I woke up I had one of those where am I who am I experiences so it was a deep deep sleep.

Emily is an awesome instructor, my God. It was all Trish come try this, Trish come and look at this. It was so much fun and I realised that pole has got a great, big, long, interesting road ahead of amazing things to learn.

I felt a little sad that I hadn’t started this earlier like in my twenties. I wouldn’t have had the courage to wear a two piece outfit in my twenties and that’s because of allowing myself to have my wings clipped by people around me. This is the whole unicorns and horses thing.

There is a running joke in the pole community about unicorns and horses. Unicorns fly, horses are beasts of burden. I’m not knocking horses, it’s an allegory. If you are not careful about who you have around you, if you allow down trodden beasts of burden to say to you, don’t wear that, don’t stand up, don’t shout out, don’t colour your hair, conform, fit in, get the job, get the house and you follow all of these rules and then you see they are still not happy and neither are you. Unicorns fly, they sparkle, they have colour, they do pole, they express themselves, and they are free. They do not care if they are big or small or have scars, they don’t care if they are good at something or bad at something as long as they are enjoying themselves, unicorns just have a ball.

Saturdays class and graduating Friday has shown me that the world is out there for me I just have to pick what I want. It’s a very cool place to be in. Emily is going to show me a heap of cool moves. Sarah is going to show me handsprings. Wow people just wow!

Thank you Universe for providing this studio, these instructors and my fellow students who I love to bits.

Blog 4 Dance Class

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Blog 4 Pole Dance Class

Every Wednesday night at 8.30 I have dance class and I wait all week for it. This is a chance for us to use the moves we’ve been learning and string them together to a song and something magical happens.

Emily is our instructor for this and what she does is quite incredible. In one hour she teaches us a dance. She breaks it down so that we can get each move. She goes over anything that we haven’t understood but how the heck she does this every time in just an hour I’ll never know.  She hasn’t made the dances so easy that you barely need to concentrate and she hasn’t made them so hard that you think what the hell am I doing here. I guess it all comes down to secret instructor business and they know what a beginner can probably do and what they can’t. Now the magic doesn’t stop here though.

I had not had a great day on Wednesday, it was a very low energy day, it’s Winter here, so by 8.30 it was rainy, dark and cold and I hadn’t taken the news of a female Doctor Who well at all. I was feeling battered by people and seriously considered staying home and watching telly with the dogs.

Dance class and the promise of magic each Wednesday night got me out of the house, into the car and off to the studio. I think sometimes just the physical effort of getting up, getting ready and going out will lift your mood. I went to gym first, I went for a walk next and then it was time for dance class.

There is a transformative effect about these classes. I switch off from who I am, what is happening in my life and in the world and for one hour I put my burdens down and I dance and for me it’s better than therapy. Emily chooses moves that take me out of my comfort zone, give me a challenge and makes me concentrate on what we are doing. The hour goes so quickly and she manages to do all of this while giving us a laugh and still supporting everyone.

I’ve been told that a way to deal with being down is to put on a funny you tube clip or something like that but that doesn’t work for me. The combination of going out, meeting lovely class mates, having a laugh, doing things that you would not normally do just lifts you out of yourself. When I get home my only difficulty is to stop buzzing enough to be able to go to sleep but even this morning as I write this I can feel my mood is so much better.
Each week in dance class I’m improving and my current goal is to learn the little things like the head flicks and having some flair with the moves. Dance class has shown me that it’s a real shame to just concentrate on technique I think a large part of dance is freedom and expression and we get that in Emily’s class as well as plain old fun. Sometimes I’m so into what I’m doing I forget all about the timing and last night I ended up turning round and facing poor Stephanie when I should have had my back to her and she didn’t say one word bless her. She laughed, I laughed and we kept going. So chalk up another magical aspect to the class, Emily has created a class where people support each other and have fun they don’t tear each other down. Emily really is a bit magical.
Thank you Universe for providing this studio, these instructors and my fellow students who I love to bits.

Blog 3 Pole Photo shoot

I have always fancied having a professional photo done of me. I always meant to do it and never got around to it. I’m now 51 and figure what the hell if you get the opportunity I say take it.

I had the photo shoot last night and it was a fantastic experience. If you want to feel good about yourself I would really recommend this. Financially speaking it’s the sort of thing that you can invest a lot in or a little in.

So do you buy a new outfit, get a fake tan, get your hair done, make up done and so on. I pretty much did the works but I managed to save a little by hunting down a cheaper outfit I was happy with. Since I now think that I will do this once a year if I get the chance I will probably start looking for next year’s outfit now. These photos can be a way to show how I have progressed at pole.

I got my first fake tan for this experience, yowza that was amazing. Do you have any idea how many people are naked for their fake tans? I was amazed. I didn’t go naked I wasn’t that comfortable with the experience. I got a pedicure and for that part I got to sit in a wonderful massage chair that was close to orgasmic. Sitting in a massage chair was another first.

I had my make up done and my hair done and the lady who did it, Kim, was just lovely. I have some regret that I didn’t go out afterwards to show off the hair and makeup. My shoot was in the evening and it was a wet windy Sunday night so I went home when we were finished but next time I might have the shoot done mid day and go out to lunch or something when we are done.

I was as nervous as hell but I had wanted this done for so long. I was a little sad that the make up didn’t transform me. You know how you see some people without make up and then with and you can barely recognize them? You could recognize me. My before make up shot was a little terrifying and then my after one was still me but better groomed. She did a beautiful job on my hair I just loved that and then I wore false eyelashes for the first time and my goodness that was fun. Getting your hair and make up done makes you feel incredibly special and looked after so I went into the shoot feeling quite prepared and excited for it.

Now I had some positions organized but my beautiful studio owner Scarlett, stayed for the shoot and directed me through it. The photographer was great and he pretty much talked to Scarlet who interpreted for me. When he said be parallel to me and I was scratching my head for how I could make that happen Scarlett would jump up and say foot there, head there, look that way, point that toe and off we went. She and the photographer had been there since 7.30 in the morning and this was 7.00 at night and both of them were still lovely and patient and friendly. I was amazed, I would have been exhausted.

While the shoot is happening and it took thirty minutes you feel like you are the centre of attention, it is the most wonderful feeling. Afterwards I went and sat with Scarlet’s mum and we chatted and looked at the photos so I could pick some out and it was great. Everything was so relaxed. What it has made me think is that I will now consider doing competitions. If I can handle all of that hub bub and enjoy myself I reckon I could do competitions, so there’s something to think about for the future.

Blog 2 Ego Can Be a Tricky Thing

When I started Pole I had about six months of Crossfit under my belt and a couple of years of circus training plus some experience in static and flying trapeze. I figured come on Pole bring it, I can take what you give out. I knew I was in trouble when Stacey the instructor for a stretch class called a lunge stretch an Ego stretch and I thought; What the? Ego stretch? You mean we shouldn’t go to the point of breaking ourselves so we can get a couple of extra cms on the person stretching next to us. Madness I thought. I am quite competitive and I have learned to tone it down because my goodness competitive people can be a pain in the tush but apparently I hadn’t quite toned it down as much as I thought I had and the Ego stretch was just the start of it.

Just in case you’re wondering, the point of Stacey calling this stretch an Ego stretch is that many people try to go as low as possible and sacrifice doing the stretch properly. You are better off staying higher and getting the position right and then work gradually on going lower and lower. Ego stretch made an impact on me and it was my first introduction to the idea that I would have to change how I do things. Not to worry I thought, I am a big tough person. I shall come to the fore in the strength aspect of Pole.

Before starting Pole class I kept watching clips of these tiny bird like creatures doing moves and I often thought well how hard can it be? Those girls look like they would fall over in a gust of wind, boy was I wrong.

A new studio had opened up and they were offering bargain basement prices and I thought yes please. Since the prices were so cheap, your not the brightest of bloggers thought, right I’m going every day. I did go every day and by the Saturday afternoon when I had started on the Monday I felt physically ill. No fair I thought, it’s just dance, it’s not real exercise, what is going on.

I will never say ‘just dance’ again, ever! Dance is beautiful, there are costumes and glitter and sparkles but my goodness do these people work. Pole performers are strong, they are disciplined and after one week I was in a world of hurt. Stacey again very kindly said it’s just the fact that you are using new muscles but after spending Saturday afternoon feeling physically ill I dialled back my pole appearances to every second day. The assault on my poor ego was not over however.

So now I was in beginner’s class, I got my pole, I got my mat, all was well with my world. The instructor showed a move, I couldn’t do it, that’s ok I’ve never been the fastest in getting things, my strength is in persistence. The problem though was that  in addition to the fact that I nearly died when I tried to do pole every day, in addition to the fact that I was now not able to stretch as low as I had previously because of a need to do the stretch right, if all of that wasn’t enough here was the final kicker and this is why many people quit class, I know because they have told me.

The final kicker is that people who start at the same time as you will progress faster. My God it’s like a wound to my heart. You try your hardest, the move doesn’t come and they just get it in a moment and you chant to yourself, suck it up, suck it up, suck it up. Be happy for them, it will happen for you eventually. The mental strength I am learning from Pole is quite astonishing.

I watched a couple of people progress before me and I thought WHY NOT ME????? Ok I said to myself, let’s look at this objectively. Rather than freak out at your poor pole instructor Scarlett, who is also the lady who owns the studio, and I would rather eviscerate myself than cause her any pain, she’s just a lovely woman. I thought ok go to class and test yourself, have you mastered all that they are teaching in the beginner’s class.

So I made sure I had a nanna nap before going, I had my pole grip, I had some tea before leaving. I was ready, I was pumped. I was going to concentrate very hard and see how much I could do. Scarlett was running the class that night and I set a lot of store by what she says. If Scarlett said no you’re not ready I would suck it up.

I did the class and I shut up and I listened. With every not very subtle opportunity I did more than was asked trying to display my mastery over the moves. You know what? Objectively, honestly, I couldn’t do all of the moves, it had to be said. There are some I can do and there are some I can’t. So I didn’t freak out and call it unfair I said ok, fair cop I will stay in beginners and I will learn all that they are willing to teach me. I actually think that Pole is going to make me more reasonable in terms of my own training. Pole is a fascinating journey.

 

2016 Blog 11 What is the Purpose of Art? (Please be aware that some difficult potentially triggering subjects are raised)

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2016 Blog 11 What is the Purpose of Art?

I was so enthralled by the Circobats Mortal Sins show that I went to both sessions. The first session raised all of these questions in me and I was hoping to get some answers from the second session. I’m still considering the answers a day later.

So far my circus experience has been, look at the beautiful outfits, see the physical mastery, listen to the wonderful music and be entertained. The Mortal Sins show took that experience to a much deeper level and I finally realised that dance and music are mediums that are as powerful as words to convey emotion. Actually to convey emotion and to evoke emotion because I and several audience members were actively moved by two of the acts in this performance.

Two acts in the first part of the show were so affecting and they lost none of their power when I saw them for the second time. It made me wonder; Is this how art started? Did a cavemen or woman experience overwhelming joy or despair and want to be able to communicate it with the others in his group. Does art allow you to get these feelings out of your system before you are consumed by them. Does it enable you to communicate with others how you are feeling through dance, music, painting, writing or sculpture? Somebody once said to me that I was too sensitive and I thought at the time that he was too insensitive. I know that despite the pitfalls of being overly sensitive I would not want to become a person whose feelings were calloused over and were not able to appreciate what I saw Friday and Saturday.

The first piece concerned grief and it made me ask so many questions. Is this piece a mechanism for making sense of what happened? Is it a way to honour those who have gone or is it a way to simply get overwhelming emotions out of your body in a constructive way rather than the destructive use of self harm or drugs. Is it a way to communicate with others that your world has changed and this is what it looks like now. It was an amazing piece of work and I will never forget it.

Zoe then showed us her year 12 submission and that was another powerful performance. I put an interpretation on it from my own experiences and then I asked Zoe later what the piece was about. My interpretation was different to Zoe’s intention and so arose more questions. Is art a direct communication between the artist and the public or does art stand alone? Does art have a life of it’s own and the ability to teach you what you need to be taught. Regardless of the answers the piece was so strong and moving. What a night hey?

Ok that’s enough of the deep stuff let me tell you about the rest of the show. The Mortal Sins show had two segments. I would like to say it was a two act piece but then there were acts within those two acts and it’s just going to get too confusing.

So the first part of the show had those two amazing pieces that I have spoken about already. We also saw some wonderful displays of acrobatics and juggling. A Circobat called Tara did the MC job for both nights and it occurred to me that her role was pivotal throughout the sessions.

To start with Tara was who we saw first, so she was our introduction to the show. It was like she opened the door to the show and said; “Come in, sit down and here we go”. Her manner and the way she was dressed was reassuring, like here you are, you are about to be experience something and I’ll be guiding you through the process. So an act would come on and you would be absorbed by that act and forget about reality and then the act was over and Tara was back and you would blink and then oh yes this is where I am and then on to the next performance. Now if you really got into an act, it was incredibly nice to have someone bring you back to reality and get you ready for the next performance. I don’t know if that was her intention but that was the effect she had on me. She kept things rolling and gave you the feeling that everything was running as it should. That girl is going to go places if she has a mind to.

They put little jokes throughout the performance. So for Tazi’s wonderful hat act you didn’t just have someone walk on stage and plonk the hat down you had a whole funny little tiny routine to go with it. I really enjoyed those little acts sprinkled throughout the evening.

The acrobatic act was ridiculously good. My goodness you did not know where to look. There were performers everywhere then they grouped themselves together and made human sculptures then they moved apart and made one big balancing thingy then they split up again and made little balancing thingies and I thought nobody is talking to each other but everyone in the act knows what pose is next, where your feet go, where your hands go and Voila! It was magical and joyous.

Tazi did her hat manipulation routine from Spaced Out and that is such a lovely happy quirky piece. She should be really proud of that act. Ryan did a juggling act on his own which was amazing. The way he got the rings to change colour was so cool. I’ve been following his work for a few years now and I’ve just seen him improve and improve. The blonde girl doing the juggling did a great job and was quite dazzling.

So now onto the second act which was The Mortal Sins show itself and yowza what a show. This was a clever show in so many ways. Take one couple, Alex and Sam, with maybe a few cracks in the relationship. Introduce a hoola hooping femme fatale played by Persia and all hell breaks loose. It’s a competition to win the heart of the man and it’s take no prisoners. Oh and you roll through a list of mortal sins as you go.

You could almost forgive Sam for being tempted with the hoola hooping scene, it was mesmerising. However Alex fought back with a trapeze routine that was not to be ignored. Her facial expression and her body language left you in no doubt what she thought of the hoola hooping intrusion. I kept thinking but that’s my Alex, funny, patient, lovely Alex. The look her character was giving Persia would have sent me scurrying away. I had to keep telling myself it’s acting Trish just acting. Words are my art form so I am fascinated that all three players exactly conveyed their emotions and intentions without a word being spoken. As an aside the way Alex made her trapeze appear and disappear at the end was genius. It was like she whistled for her horse and it appeared and then it left again when she was done with it. This is an example of all of these tiny little things that just made the show brilliant. Then Alex commenced to walk all over Persia in an acrobatic showdown that was amazing. Sam then comes in and shows how he’s been manipulating hearts all along and then proceeds to hypnotise the audience with his illuminated poi routine. Alex and Persia return with some music that will knock your socks off, honestly the music was another character of the show. Alex and Persia then biff it out on separate silks. Sam watches Persia at the start but he’s watching Alex at the end.

I cannot believe how talented these people are. They could be actors if they wanted to and I’ve barely mentioned the physical mastery they showed in the performance. My goodness I enjoyed this. If they do a DVD I would love a copy and Circobats need to think about having a You Tube channel. seriously guys think about this.

I am incredibly grateful for meeting the Circobats people. They are talented in their performances and they are kind by the way they are willing to share their skills in the classes they offer. I am dazzled by their performances. Well done Circobats you are awesome.

2016 Blog 10 Training is a Privilege

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Have you ever thought about the idea that training is a privilege? Any day, any moment or any second, things could happen and your training could be taken away. You could get injured, your trainer could get injured, you could have to go to hospital, your training venue could get shut down, maybe you have to move or your job changes. People with children, in my experience mostly women, have trouble getting to training because of the difficulty with finding someone to mind the kids.

Some people’s jobs get in the way, some people don’t have jobs and can’t afford the training. Some people have a physical or mental impairment that make training a very different proposition as compared to a person without those impairments. Some people don’t have transport or don’t have a class that interests them available to them.

My point is, that when I have training I move Heaven and Earth to get there. Sometimes I’m tired or grumpy or achy but I always think you don’t know how long this will last you need to make the most of every session. I just wanted to share that.

Another thought that occurred to me today was that why does an interesting training session finish in a nanosecond when I have been in other dull sessions that drag on forever!!!! Doesn’t seem fair somehow.

Doctor Who may as well have come and visited and stuffed around with the time lines today because I would have sworn on bibles that our lesson lasted for five minutes but I looked at the clock at the finish and poor Alex had gone fifteen minutes over .

It was such a great lesson today. I felt so strong. I stuffed up a move. I was trying to do a backward roll and I missed the bar, Alex said go back the other way and I didn’t even panic I knew I had enough strength to hold my own weight and just go back the other way and that my friends is one of the sweetest feelings in the world. To be able to hold your own weight and feel comfortable in it is cool, very very cool.

Chantelle did a move that we’re calling the Python. I really wished I had got it on video but I was so horrified by what she was doing that I couldn’t even move to help her. It was like she did it in slow motion. She did a drop and then kept going but slowly. So her legs were around the rope and then she released her arm and then her legs and kind of curled up on top of the mat below. It was amazing to watch. The freaky thing was that as she did it I was asking Alex what’s the escape clause in this move if you don’t catch your legs and she was saying as Chantelle was doing her Python no you’ll be fine because you’re hanging on with one arm.  It is very fortunate that Chantelle is as bendy as she is.

After witnessing the Python I went right off that particular move and then found any drops hard after that too. Chantelle got right back up and did it again so that was enough for me to suck it up and go otherwise I would have been regretting it on the drive home.

We did our routine on the triple trapeze and that was a lot of fun. Every now and again depending on the move Chantelle and I would meet on the trapeze and the first couple of times it scared the hell out of me. Normally when I do the routine I’m thinking about it so hard I forget everything else. So there I was concentrating hard on some move and then Chantelle’s face looms towards me as she does the same move on the other side of the trapeze. I nearly fell off my perch the first couple of times. It’s fun though doing the routine on the triple as opposed to two singles side by side.

In other news Circobats are having a fundraiser for their next fringe show. They will be doing their Mortal Sins Act and there will be a couple of other supporting acts. The tickets are ten dollars and that’s very cheap entertainment to see some extremely talented people. There are two sessions for this performance this Friday Night at 7.30 and Saturday at 5.30. You can get the details from their website or Facebook page and they also have raffle tickets with some speccy prizes.

Thank you for reading and I’ll catch you in the next blog.

2016 Blog 7 Let go of the person you think you are to become the person you want to be.

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That is possibly one of my longest blog titles ever but it really suits the subject matter.

Before I get into that though my adventures with a flying trapeze have continued this week with getting a ride in a cherry picker and my goodness was that fun. I got to twenty feet and that was as high as the trees we were trimming I was higher than Venus (that’s what we call our flying trapeze) and I could see the tops of my trees. I have always wondered what it would be like to be up there and now I know. How lovely were those tree trimmers that they let me have a go. It’s amazing what you get if you ask for it. May I have a go in your cherry picker, yes they say, you may.

I try to make an effort to go to Friday night open training at Circobats because things keep happening on the Friday night that I don’t see when I just go to the Saturday class. On Friday nights I quite often see people practising routines and a couple of times now I’ve had these really good conversations with people that have made me think about what they’ve said on the drive home.

So this Friday’s conversation was with Vashti and she just said quite casually you and Chantelle should do a routine in an upcoming show. Now Chantelle and I have already said yes please to doing a show case at Christmas but this was another type of thing all together. My first reaction was no way could I do that but then when Vashti had left I kept thinking about it. To perform is a natural extension to circus training. When you know that you will be performing it makes you work harder and really nail down your moves and think about what you’re doing. My long term goal was to perform occasionally so Vashti got me thinking. When I train I have fun and I get fit but I don’t think about how it would look if I had an audience so in a sense even though it’s my long term goal I’m not doing anything to get closer to it. So on my drive home I thought even if I don’t perform in this show I need to be ready for when an opportunity arises. It would be incredibly cool to get up there and show what I can do. So thanks Vashti that was a very nice piece of direction for me.

Saturday class heralded our first session with the triple trapeze and oh my goodness. I’ve done trapeze for a while now but hey there is still heaps I can learn. We went so far out of my comfort zone that I would need GPS to get back.

Our first job for the lesson was to show that we could do a pull up and I’m not a novice at this game. Don’t let your trainer walk away and if you’re going to do one do it early before you get tuckered out. Honestly I was like one of the kids I teach, “Alex! Are you watching? I’m going to do it now’ Chantelle and I did the pull up. Poor Alex, Chantelle and I are adults in name only.

Then the rest of the class was doing all of this amazing partner work that I had not done before. It was challenging, fun, magical and confronting. My mind and my courage got a workout at the same time. I do not understand how people can do fitness and not enjoy it, if you are not enjoying your exercise class take a circus class you’ll never look back.

One really cool thing about partner work on a triple trapeze was that for a couple of the moves because you are both on the trapeze you lock each other in so doing some of the moves I’ve never felt more secure. That was cool.

I did however have a couple of difficulties with the activities. The first difficulty was that up till now all of my partner work has been on a double trapeze and has pretty much been one person on top of another. With a triple trapeze we were doing side by side stuff and I was working overtime to get things straight in my head. This leg goes here and this arm goes here and then time what you do here and I thought Help! We figured it out but my goodness it was a mental workout.

The second difficulty was a difficulty I have had previously when working with others. We were doing this move and I can’t remember what it was called but Chantelle and I had to balance off of each other and I wasn’t comfortable with that at all. I am bigger and heavier than her and I thought I’m going to send her into orbit. She assured me that I wouldn’t and when we did the move she didn’t go into orbit so maybe next time we do it I’ll be able to relax and just enjoy what we’re doing.

So my outcomes from this weekend were. I have a renewed direction with my training. If I want to get to a certain point I need to let go of the person I think I am to become the person I want to be. If I perform and I stuff something up it’s not the end of the world. Hell they stuff up in the Olympics it would be worse to not have a go and what would be really cool is to perform and enjoy performing, hmmm that’s certainly worth thinking about.

This triple trapeze is obviously going to open up a whole new world for us and I am one happy camper about that. Trapeze never gets dull.

2016 Blog 6 How did I end up here?

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It’s been an amazing couple of weeks. I have just completed two weeks of training in dogging and rigging and I’m now a qualified dogger and rigger. Soon I shall have a little plastic card with a somewhat gormless face on it to prove this.

I have no handyman skills. I have very little in the way of mathematical skills. You know that expression measure twice cut once? I’ve rarely been able to get two measurements to agree with each other but that’s ok we are all here for different purposes. So how the heck did I end up in a room with all of these construction workers learning about loads and weights and maths and trying to remember to swear every second word because it’s pretty much their language.

It all started when I quit the smokes. I took up exercise to deal with the withdrawal and the loss of stress coping mechanisms that quitting the smokes produced. Exercise made me want to learn handstands, handstands took me to circus, circus took me to flying trapeze, flying trapeze took me to buying one because we didn’t have one in South Australia and buying one took me to running a flying trapeze business to pay for the darn creature and that took me to dogging and rigging.

So here I am in my school holidays with my steel capped boots in a room full of blokes learning about stuff that I had almost no prior knowledge of. The learning curve was astronomical. The thing was though everybody in the training facility were so nice to Nick, our trapeze’s head trainer and me and I mean everybody.

Nobody treated us like who the hell are you and why are you here. Their reaction was oh you run a flying trapeze how cool. I loved these guys. They swore all the time which is kind of relaxing you don’t feel like you’re bottling anything up, if you’re cross just cuss even when they weren’t cross they cussed.

I wore a hard hat and a high visibility vest which in the trade we call high vis. I seriously considered reinventing myself as TM, I quite fancy that. I drove a fork lift, directed a crane, drove a scissor lift, did stuff up, undid other stuff. I had such a good time. I relived all the fear of my high school maths experiences, I didn’t enjoy that bit but I wouldn’t have had any of these experiences without my beloved trapeze and boy has she tested me on my love this year.

So thank you CITC training your instructor was fabulous, a very funny and knowledgeable man and I am a huge fan of the all you can drink coffee facility.

On to other circussy news. I got to see the final performance of the Circobats Spaced Out show. I had seen the dress rehearsal before but wow the show was amazing. Music, lighting, timing, it was all just wow. There was an OSHC (Out of School Hours Care)group in the audience and those kids were entranced. I had missed seeing Persia the first time round and her performance today was phenomenal. Everyone involved should be proud of themselves it was such a cool show.

I’m going to finish this blog with a little dedication. My little cat Byron is not very well and I think he’s off to the rainbow bridge very soon. I want to say thank you for coming to live with me and I have adored you my little monkey man, say gidday to all of those who have gone before you.

Thank you for reading and I will catch you next week.