Dancing King

We were enjoying our pizza at our beach-picnic last week when the elderly man slowly made his way to the grassy area. He unfolded his chair close to our blanket and looked over at our three blankets of fun and mischief and smiled a warm smile. The band was testing out their sound system complete with squealing sounds and announcements of “testing 1, 2, 3.” Finally as the music began for real, the toes began to tap and his smile grew wider and deeper.

A familiar tune began to play and in a wink of an eye the man stood up and sauntered over to the walkway. With his hands in his pockets he began moving his body to the beat and started to step in line dancing fashion. He was alone in his dance, but he aptly executed the moves with swift and sure feet. Suddenly, a woman sitting across stood up and joined in the dance. Then another woman stepped in, and then my daughter-in-law with my grandson in tow decided to have a go as well. Within a few minutes the once lonely dancer had a team of six women.

I looked at the scene unfolding in front of me, instantly moved that this once companion-less gentleman now had six dancing partners at a park, at a beach, on this hot summer night. A tear formed and fell swiftly down my cheek. I looked around and noticed my daughter, sitting next to me had also begun to cry. We gave each other a quick comforting hug, chuckled at our similar ways, and turned to watch the dancing king turn this sultry evening into a joyous display of song and community.

Friday night and the lights are low

Looking out for a place to go

Where they play the right music, getting in the swing

You come to look for a king

Anybody could be that guy

Night is young and the music’s high

With a bit of rock music, everything is fine

You’re in the mood for a dance

And when you get the chance

You are the dancing queen

Young and sweet, only seventeen

Dancing queen

Feel the beat from the tambourine, oh yeah

You can dance, you can jive

Having the time of your life

from Abba: Dancing Queen

It’s Tuesday and I’m joining the community of writers over at Two Writing Teachers for their weekly hosting of Slice of Life Tuesday. Check it out and consider joining in.

10 Replies to “Dancing King”

  1. What a great moment – I love that by doing his own thing, he invites others into his life. Somehow that complements the moment when you realize that both you and your daughter are teary. Beautiful, really, capturing this little slice and sharing it with us. Thank you.

      1. This piece adds an especially lovely layer to “be a risk-taker” – we just don’t know what might happen until we get out there and try. Instead of quietly sitting and thinking about dancing, he just did it – and now the beauty isn’t his alone; see how far it’s rippling. And – considering this song and that moment – you’re never too old to have the time of your life. So much beauty here. And joy:)

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