Saturday evening I attended a Hanukkah party with a Jewish friend, who was kind enough to invite me. There was a klezmer band–most of them were women–that was simply marvelous!
I’ve always liked klezmer music from the first time I heard it. Something in it speaks to me of being joyful despite struggle and suffering. I can relate to that.
Once things really got going, some of the women left their seats to take part in some traditional women-only dancing. I was really into the music–I react quite strongly to music, moving and being moved by the good stuff and cringing at the bad–and my friend grinned at me and said,”Why don’t you join them? You know you want to!”
There were around 30 women dancing. Many of them, fortunately for me, didn’t know the steps either, but the dances weren’t terribly complicated, and there were a couple of women who were obviously very good dancers. The rest of us imitated what they were doing.
I found that if I just went with the music, it danced through me.
The band played several dance tunes from both the Ashkenazic and Sephardic traditions.
It was joyous!
When the band finally took a break, I rejoined my friend. He was beaming. “It was so good to see you that happy!”
I thanked him profusely then, and later, again, in an email. I said, “Thank you so much for creating that situation. It’s what I’ve always wanted, you know, to be able to join the other girls. I can’t express how much that meant to me.”
He replied, “Your face expressed it all.”