So, lately, I have been focusing so much on the prompts that my monthly theme went unnoticed. For those of you who are unaware of what the series this month is, briefly, it is a series of unfortunate events that led to the discontinuation of several of my initiatives. With just 6 more days left in this month, I must let you all in on my fallacies quickly!
Keeping pomposity at bay for now, I request you to follow me through the worm hole… When I was a kid and not burdened with school, college, work, I was enrolled in dance classes. Two different dance forms. The second one because I discontinued the first (ya ya, big surprise). In India, Bharatanatyam and Kathak are known dance forms. With almost every state in the country proudly presenting its individual and absolutely enthralling dance forms, what caught my mother’s and my eye were the two mentioned above. The former, originating from the South and the latter from the North of India, following are my experiences with each:
Part I: Incomplete Bharatanatyam lessons
Age five (approx.). My Mother, like all South Indian mothers do, put me for Bharatanatyam classes. Bharatanatyam is an Indian dance form, requiring patience and willingness to subject your knees to consistent squatting. Today of course, I admire squats, obviously for the future admiration I shall receive, but back then, I had a purer mind than I do now.
Coming back, rather going back, to age five. I suppose all Indian mothers do this, put their girls in dance classes. For that matter, around the globe, all mothers who start their daughters at ballet lessons are just the counterparts of Indian mothers! Alright, so I go for it, like the good, obedient daughter I am, for the classes. Held two days in a week, I was regular maybe for, one class. What happened in the next class made me vow to never enter those classes again; and I kept my word. Trauma had engulfed me! It was a traumatic experience! You wouldn’t know! I was just a kid! What I saw there… no, it was the best decision at the time, to never go back.
Insisting, are you? You sadistic reader! You want to know the painful experience I had to live through? If you enjoy it, you are weirdly perverse. Fine! I’ll tell you.
What I saw there was the teacher yelling at this other girl on bad form….
Laugh all you want. Go ahead, laugh! But I was traumatized! I was so scared of the teacher! I was five! That girl was elder to me, she could take the humiliation! But I was worried that if this teacher ever yelled like that at me, I would cry like a baby! I was a baby at five!!!
Happy that you made me tell you this? Sadist. Years later, today, I have a better handle on humiliation and reprimands. I do regret at times, the fact that I didn’t learn the dance form. But hey! I tried another dance form! Read on to know if I succeeded or not.
Part II: Incomplete Kathak lessons
Well, I was ten then, I suppose. I started learning Kathak, a North Indian dance form, this time. I have, till date, found Kathak to be extremely graceful. I thought so back then as well. I suppose that was brought on by Devdas (2002). Watching Madhuri Dixit, effortlessly graceful, and along with her Aishwarya Rai, who too had a Bharatanatyam background, maybe my inner longing to have learnt a dance form resurfaced. So I went for the classes. I was consistent! I enjoyed it! Not very graceful, I obviously wasn’t a healthy child, quite obese, must say, I attempted dancing. I could dance! I used to!
I learnt Kathak for three years, two of which were spent studying for the first exam. I took it and passed! What happened next made me vow to never enter that class again…
Alright, no. Nothing excessively traumatic, but a combination of two reasons made me quit. First, we had written exams from the second level, in HINDI. Second, we shifted to our own house in 2005, so the class wasn’t close anymore and my mom found it difficult to accompany me to the classes twice a week, as she was busy with her own music classes.
First reason – I was never good at Hindi and at that age, I couldn’t really read and write in it. So, the dance was becoming more of a pain than anything else. The second reason just came at the right time and the consensus at home was, Kathak can be chucked. So I did. And truly, I do regret it.
P. S. So that’s all folks, for today’s ‘confessions of an incomplete-o-maniac’. I must insist, enjoying as you are, my public, voluntary humiliation, I would love to read your tales of incomplete initiatives! Until then, happy dancing 🙂