A Hot Night at the Esplanade!

WHAT A NIGHT WITH THE SALSA PERFORMANCE TEAM (ACTFA) FROM XENBAR

Posing right before the performance

Don’t let the tube tops and the short shorts distract you! (I’m in the back on the right side)

A few days ago my dance school performed at the Esplanade’s Forecourt to kick start the “Da:ns Festival” with hot latin dance! We worked very hard over 2 months to put on 12 dances that evening. I danced in 2 dances – one Salsa and one Bachata. It was quite an experience for me because it was my first dance performance. The last 2 weeks was the most stressful because I had to learn a whole new dance choreography almost from scratch, and to perform it smoothly and technically correct.  I quite enjoyed the training so early into my Salsa dancing journey because it strengthened my basic technique and showmanship.

The performance itself was very nerve-wrecking! I didn’t mean to get nervous but I did. Even though I knew my steps inside and out, i forget 2 sets of moves (to the horror of my partner) during the performance because of nerves. Though I was able to get back quickly, I’m glad I went through that hick-up as it only made me more determined to get more performance experience so I can perform just like it was socially at a club (which I used to be terrified before!)

Salsa has really become the highlight of my day, everyday. I wake up excited to improve myself in Salsa. I know it’s a great way to meet woman, but that’s not really what makes it so enjoyable. The great part is improving slowly bit by bit and learning something new everyday.

I know my wise boss Adam Khoo once said that in order to be the best at something, you must be OBSESSED with it. I guess I found something I’m obsessed with. I do want to be the best at this. Not sure how good I want to get, but I guess making a name for myself would be a good start.

I should really thank the ACTFA and Xenbar (the place where I take lessons from) for teaching me and pushing me to improve, and most importantly of all, for giving me a platform for me to passion to good use.

It’s been great the last few months. I’ve really improved!

My next performances are in December! Stay tuned!

Dave

Kuching, Malaysia 11-13 July

Photos time!

Just part of our group who went to Kuching

Just part of our group who went to Kuching

Waiting at the Airport (ok reverse time!)

Another shot of the group. Were at a night club in Kuching

Another shot of the group. We're at a night club in Kuching

The craziest Polish Celtic band I have ever heard!

The craziest Polish Celtic band I have ever heard!

We went to Kuching because of a World Music Festival and one of the featured bands was from Poland. Darn they play some kick ass celtic music, super fast and perfect to pump up the crowd..which was going pretty much out of control.

One of the highlights of the trip was just siting and chatting on the side of the lake. Enjoying the moment.

So relaxing. Great friendship.

So relaxing. Great friendship.

Anyways, it was so much fun. As you can see, I like photos with people in it becoz the trip was great because of the people. Lots of laughter, fun and bonding. That’s what being an AIESEC intern (or ex intern) ..well living the international life is about. I’m so grateful for this kind of life style.

One this is certain…Salsa!

salsa

I just came back from 5 hours of dancing to salsa bachtta and merengue music. I’m still working hard in my journey in Salsa and at least I’m happy to be sure of one thing: I must get better!

According to ToSalsa.com’s article by Josie Neglia called “6 Levels of Salsa” I consider myself at level 2:

Level 2
The man and lady are now dancing in time to the music while doing basic patterns and variations.

and level 6 being:

Level 6
The ULTIMATE LEVEL…when it all comes together.  This is when the dancers become  “the physical instruments” of the music.  If a deaf person were to watch them dance, he/she could SEE the music through their movements and interpretation.  …and it goes on…

The article can be found here

So there’s a while go go, but it’s ok I just started! I’m a beginner who’s got the motivation to become better.

A lot of my drive to become better lies that guys in Salsa have it a lot tougher. Check this diagram out by Edie the Salsa Freak :

beginner\'s diagram

Guys in order to get through the beginner’s hell stage, need lots more time to practice..meaning lots more time of suffering. Right now I’m suffering…lots. Regrettably stepping on toes, screwing up the flow of the dance with ill-time leads but despite all this, I’m determined to get through this phase..unto that upward sloping portion where the man’s salsa growth is exponential. And during that stage his level will increase so fast because he knows he can hold his own dance and adequately lead the girl. I can’t wait for that. It’s getting better slowly. Hopefully by November / December, 6 month’s from now, I can hold my own in Salsa, and maybe even make a few ladies smile.

Practice Practice Practice…even though it’s so scary!

Answering THAT Question…

I think these past few months of idleness, reflection and searching have been extemely insightfuly and at the same time fulfilling. When I ask myself that darn question “What do i want to do with my life?” it honestly annoys me a lot. Because it has been built into me that, I have to find my passion quickly, and devote my life to it, whatever it may be.

However, from reading stories about people who’ve found their passion, I have found comfort in knowing that people do eventually find them, if they look for it (and even if they don’t) – it just happens.

I also wonder about if my parent’s are passionate what they do. They provide for the family quite adequately, are great parents and are happy people. They seem pretty content with their life. Is that good enough? To me, I would be happy with that.

These time of searching has illuminate a few things about myself: I like genuine (ie longer term) connections with unique and unusual people, I am attracted to positions or situations of leadership, responsibility and strategy-planning, music is in my blood, career isn’t life, freedom means I can pursue all my ambitions, I constantly need change…and the list goes on…

A friend of mine, during a couple of drinks, that she perceives me as a very smart and ambitious person; however hard on himeslf. It is true, I take myself very seriously, I mean…wouldn’t you take yourself seriously? It is your life, you know. At the same time I see myself as being very laid back and relaxed, just let thing’s happen. Maybe it’s just me juggling that paradox: I create my own success vs. success is not in my control, it will just happen by itself.

I think if one major point I’ve learned about pursuing passion has been that…It Changes. It doesn’t have to be one life-calling. Maybe God has called me to pursue multiple things that perhaps adds up to one grander scheme. I don’t have to be super duper passionate about the job I’m in, because maybe it is just leading up to something bigger.

I haven’t found an answer to that question yet so I’m going to keep on doing what I’ve always been doing:

Be a good person, and make everyone’s life around me wonderful.

Impluse Interests

Do you find yourself wanting to do EVERYTHING that interests you? or BUY everything that interests you? Supermarkets are great at this, putting little items near the cashier to get you to buy it on impulse? or at a clothes stores, or at a computer store? There are so many different items/ideas to get hooked on in an instant.

I’ve heard people mention that in today’s society we have very low attention span, low patience. We decide to committ to certain things on an impulse like “oh I’d like to do that, or I’d like to buy it” and then after we learn that things are not so interesting, it is dropped. We are busy with many different things but we can never COMMIT to anything. It’s like we want to do everything, but not determined enough to work to get it.

I’m just wondering if I’ve overcommitted myself in my life. Looking at my schedule, I aim to do as many things as I find useful and enjoyable (even if it’s doing nothing). I do get a lot of invitations that I have to consider if I want to committ to. Here’s an example:.

For you Toastmaster people, I just cannot accept ALL evaluation or judge invitations, especially if my main role is a leadership position, like division governor. As much as I’d love to attend them all, I have to consider my priorities, which is now for the Division. The dangerous thing is to accept invitations on impulse.

Another of my growing interests is music, especialy Salsa music…especially dancing to salsa music. I frequently look at places to learn and places to practice. I’ve decided in my mind that I do want to commit to learning this skills and I am willing to put in more than 1 day a week. The question is, how much is enough, how much can I committ? I just started up salsa again 2 months ago I am wondering (as I usually do) if it is one of those passing interests, an impulse interest. Well, so far so good, I haven’t lost motivation yet.

Picking the right career is something that occupies my mind frequently. From time to time I get different ‘ideas’ on what would be a career I’m passionate about. Since starting my ‘hiatis’, some of those ‘ideas’ have been Change Management consultant, Talent Management, Hospitality / Services trainer, Enterpreneur, and now to Career Management…and this could go on. These names I just mentioned are just some interests that came to my mind out of nowhere, maybe from reading a book or browsing the internet. Maybe one of these could be something I’m interested in…geniunly.

I’ve realized that many people find their ‘calling’ or passion but not by picking it from a list of possible career paths, but by discovering it. Some may find it in the new, but many find that they have always had it within them, and that they’ve been ignoring it all along and it’s just a matter of letting it surface. That news is comforting as I too am doing what I can to let my calling surface, and I’m not worried about how long it will take, even if it seems others are getting ahead of me in their life. I think I’ve come to terms with that. I just know that it’s going to happen one day. And it’s not going to be out of impulse, it’s going to be REAL.

To Busy Bee or not to Busy Bee

Now that I have more free time on my hands, I start to notice things differently. Like for example, the need to be busy, to be mentally occupied…constantly! I just can’t make myself sit still for 5 minutes, I constantly need to be doing something, wether it is productive like working on a hobbie or a pet project, or unproductive like aimlessly surfing the web or the TV. Maybe other people have this voice in their head that says, “be busy, be busy, be busy”. I get that voice in my mind all the time, and it drives me insane!

Having grown up in the information age, people my age are very used to having everything near instantly. Our attention span is literally 5-10 seconds..or less. I remember situations where my friends and I ended up cancelling a gathering because we didn’t want to wait 15 minutes for someone. And of course, having worked in the events management line, programmes are planned merticulously down to the minute! Like the timing has to be perfect with no time for waiting.

The opposite of busy is waiting. This month, which is such a stark contrast to one year ago…I find myself waiting and waiting. Waiting for the next big thing, waiting to be (yes you guessed it) busy again. That little voice telling me I should do something with the time i have gives me an supply of guilt as i ‘try’ to enjoy my free time.

I think not being busy is a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because there’s more anticipation for upcoming activities, more sleep, and time to enjoy nature and life, less stress, more time with friends, and more ‘ME’ time. It’s a curse once you tell yourself ‘I could be doing so much more…” because the more things one does, the more one enjoys life.

Is there much more I can do? or is less…more?

Hmmm