Yesterday I sold two side tables, two picture frames, a mirror and a small table to a nice lady who was very chatty and apologetic. She apologized over meeting so late (10pm), but it was perfect for me. She apologized over talking so much and "spending so much of my time", I said I barely see anyone and you are enjoyable company. She apologized over having me carry the stuff to her car because she was infirm. I said I carry heavy stuff for exercise and pleasure.
I'm discovering Canadian politeness.
Yesterday I broke my 10 day streak going out dancing. It wasn't my choice, I searched for events or places to dance but... Monday. I went to the calisthenics park to exercise. After a while I became that annoying guy who puts on music on his cellphone and does a little dance between sets, in my defense I can honestly write that I forgot to bring headphones.
It's eerily strange, but sometimes while dancing I have memories emerge of women teaching me how to dance. These are memories when I was perhaps 18 to 24 years of age, more than 20 years ago. I used to go out drinking with my friends and dancing is a prelude to making out (or hooking up), as I didn't know how to dance I would ask girls to teach me. I actually had no interest in dancing, I was doing it to take things to the next stage. Yes, it's pretty cringe.
There's a movement around a book called The body keeps the score in which it is stated that the nervous system can hold memory, and if you move the body in certain ways they will be released, and if you stretch or work into your body you can even heal traumatic memories through the body.
I used to be skeptical about this affirmation, but I can't explain it in any other way. When I dance I remember the girl who taught me, the place and context, all while having been pretty drunk. I probably remember it better now than I remembered the next day at the time. I was never able to build up my dancing skills from my drunk weekend attempts but somehow my body registered it.
I've been thinking: what are the conditions that led me to dance? There's a lot of previous ground work but coming to Montreal was what made everything come together.
When I choose my living conditions, I remove all mirrors and just leave a small mirror to see my face in the bathroom. I do this deliberately, as I find myself staring at the mirror too often. This apartment is full of mirrors, so after I started dancing I would do it at home too, and I could see myself doing it so I could improve.
The fact that I am alone in Montreal, nobody knows me, I can embarrass myself as much as I want. I sometimes think about this while dancing "oh I'm too intense... who cares, if there's anything I'm going to regret from this dance is not putting more of myself into it".
The fact that most Canadians are not good dancers. Learning to dance in the midst of good dancers intimidates you, learning to dance with people who are more or less on your level is much more comfortable.
The fact that Montreal is full of festivals and dancing events. In these 10 days I've danced at the stage of the F1 Montreal Cup, at the Mural festival in St. Laurent, and at the Les Francos Festival. There always seems to be a free place to dance (well, except yesterday and today).
When I went back to Mexico from Montreal after having taken care of my difficult grandmother I thought to myself: "I'll just cut my losses and accept the fact that I lost six months of my life, the lessons I learned were not proportional to the suffering I went through".
But now the balance feels correct, even to my advantage. It's not that I learned how to dance but I learned how to enjoy dancing, and that's much more valuable than learning to dance because after enjoying something, the learning comes on its own. I see this as a gift, from my grandparents, from life, from the universe, from God. I accept and cherish it.