Luckily, the school makes the studios available to the students for practice from 8 am to 11 pm every day. So, I came in over the weekend and practiced the routines. While practicing, I was aware that I was training my brain on how to dance Flamenco. I was literally creating the synapses and reminding my brain “this is what it feels like to do it correctly.” On Monday I was much improved.
I had the best teacher. Pilar is an extremely accomplished dancer. During my time at Carmen de las Cuevas, Pilar was very pregnant, but she never let it get in her way. And she was so patient with us. She would just keep repeating the steps until we got them. I really appreciated that she never made us dance alone. We always followed her. Although quiet and sweet, she had a very strong and centered intensity when she danced.
When planning this trip to Spain I may have forgotten a few things… like the fact that I haven’t had a dance class in years, or that I was always considered uncoordinated as a child, or that I am clearly past the age when most people would begin a dance program. All of these thoughts entered my mind at different times during my first week at Carmen de Las Cuevas.
It was actually good that I didn’t think about these things too much or I would never have come here. Thoughts like that are what hold people back from pursuing their dreams. They are also self-fulfilling prophecies. For when I was learning and a fearful thought would come up it would literally stop my mind from learning. I had to occasionally clear my mind and empty it so that my body and brain could work together. Regardless, at times I was frustrated.
With Pilar Fajardo, my instructor
With Carmen Linares, owner of Carmen de Las Cuevas