“Can we pleeeaaaassse meet tomorrow and do one more quick practice?” I more or less begged her with my best I-Need-This-Or-I’m-Gonna-Die whine. I told her any time, any place.
I was nervous.
She found an itty bitty teeny weenie hole in her schedule and wiggled me into it. A huge act of kindness based on how busy she was that day.
We met at her studio, took our positions, turned on our music, and…
And it was near perfection.
It was the best I’d ever danced it.
We cranked up the music again. Again no real flaws or missteps. Had I dreamt my way to learning it the night before?
After one more run-through hitting every step, I told her I thought we were good to go. She agreed, saying you don’t ever want to over-practice on the day of the performance.
A couple hours later I was carrying a tux, a bouquet of roses, a large gym bag, and a hundred other things, and I huffed it all into the front doors of the school we were to perform at. I asked the guy at the front desk (who I *think* was using a fake English accent) where I was to go. He gave me a blank stare and said, “Who are you?”
“I’m here for Dancing with the Stars. Can you point me to the auditorium?” He returned that with a disdainful crusty.
“There is nothing like that going on here. Maybe you’re looking for our other school.” I read him the address that was given me and which I had then turned around and given to all of my friends, family, and all of you. “That’s this address, but we don’t have any events like that scheduled tonight.”
He saw the panic burst through my eyes ready to laser slice him in half. I took a deep breath. “Okay, we need to figure this out because I have more than 70 RSVPs that I sent to this address and at six o’ clock tonight they’ll all be pounding this door down ready to put my head on a spear.
It may have been slightly dramatic.
He got on the phone and found out it was scheduled at their “other school” down the hill. Not having any idea how to get the word out quickly enough for anybody to get it, I supermanned my stuff back to my car, zipped to the other school, sprinted inside, and met Krista on stage. She’d also been through a similar routine to end up at the right place.
We both jibber-jabbered about our new predicament, gave the sound guys our music, and took our places on the stage. We had only minutes to do a run-through or two before it was somebody else’s turn. And…
And it was near perfection.
And I was no longer nervous. And we did it again. And we nailed it.
The next hour was a blur of makeup, hairdressing, repeatedly nailing my head on the short ceiling under the stage, changing in tiny middle school bathroom stalls, and pawning of the de-thorning of my roses to some awesome kid who was just chillin’ below decks.
We were second on the schedule to dance.
Somewhere in the middle of all of it, I texted every person I personally knew who was coming and told them of the venue mishap. Then I left a quick note on the SDL Facebook page hoping anybody who was coming *might* see it. I didn’t have a lot of hope. The event coordinators promised us they’d hang something up telling people where to go. At that point I could only let it go and hope it worked out.
Before long, the people in charge told us it was starting, and I went to wait on deck. The first performance ended, I put a rose in my mouth, and I took my place at stage left.
My partner set her chair on the floor, took her position, and…
Continued on next page (including a video of the dance!)