I love the lightbulbs strung across the patio. Yellow against a deepening blue.
Feet. Stepping. Twirling. Is this what getting older feels like? A sense that even in the moment time is speeding up.
Or maybe I should just blame the jet lag.
But look again. This is joy in motion. Foreground: the woman with the leather dress kicks her heals up as she is spun around. Background: A lady in red loses her partner to a friend but keeps moving. Feeling the beat. Enjoying the cool air as dusk settles, quiet, and free.
Then I look down and realized that you can see confidence just by watching the feet. Heels, sandals, sneakers. Step. Step. Step. Tap. Tap. Tap.
There is nothing wrong with dancing alone, but there is something incredibly fascinating in watching a matched pair move in synchronicity. Matching rhythm, beat, and tone.
The final trumpet. The music swelling to a crescendo, a finale – and we’re racing to an end where there is a final lilt of apology subtle as the cacophony of energy fades away. Applause.
Look again. Look again, and escape.
I’m trying to jump start my creative writing, so occasionally you might get something a little different than my usual essays (perhaps a few attempts at flash fiction). This was a moment on my first day in California, during a breath of contemplation on a salsa night at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery.