My husband, Greg, and I have been taking ballroom dance lessons for the past few years. We glide—and often fumble—our way through the rumba, cha-cha, waltz, foxtrot, salsa and other dances, usually once or twice a week. In the process, we’ve made several new friends, including our instructors, Mike and Deb.
When COVID-19 hit in March, all lessons were canceled indefinitely because we can’t practice inside, and we can’t touch or even be within six feet of other dancers. This created a lull in our weekly schedule. It felt sad to us “novices”—and truly life-changing to Mike and Deb, who have been dancing for 28 years and giving lessons for 18 years, occupying 5-6 evenings a week. It was a huge loss to them, resulting in a lot of free time.
Greg and I kayaked near Mike and Deb’s home one evening earlier this summer and stopped by afterward for a chat in the driveway. We suggested they might enjoy kayaking and said we’d bring our other two kayaks and they could try it sometime. They didn’t wait around for us, however, instead borrowing a couple of kayaks from another couple in town, and giving it a go. They loved the experience so much that they bought their own kayaks within a week!
When they texted us that they got kayaks, we found a time to go paddling the following week, and chose to go to Park Lake in Pardeeville, a lake we’ve frequented this summer. The dock has a kayak launcher, which enabled us to get into the lake so smoothly that I didn’t even get my socks wet (temperatures were a bit chilly)!
It was a peaceful day on the water as we explored the lake. We talked and laughed, happy to be spending time together again.
“If you had not come over that night, we may never have gotten started kayaking,” said Deb. “It is already another passion of ours.”
We miss our dance lessons, but we’re thrilled to have a new activity to enjoy together—and grateful for these two wonderful people, who are our friends beyond the dance floor.