Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Rachael's Old Fashioned

I love to dance, but only when there are prescribed rules, forms to follow. If there's a dance beat at a club and I'm supposed to just move, I feel completely lame, but I'm a great contra-dancer (New England line dancing). I can stomp my feet to the sound of a fiddle. I can pull off a square-dance or two. I'm not that hot at the polka, but you can't beat me at the waltz: the only dance that, when done right, makes a person feel like they're actually flying.

I love contra-dancing so much that I put one in my next book, WISHES AND STITCHES, out in October. Here, in a short sneak peek, we see Naomi dancing with a Cypress Hollow rancher.

Naomi moved into Stephen’s arms, her hand in his work-roughened palm, her arm at his shoulder, grateful that there was no way to keep from smiling when an old cowboy was spinning a girl round and around so fast that Naomi knew if he let her go, she’d fly across the room like an out-of-control top. She didn’t know what she was doing, but he made her feel coordinated and graceful.

Elbert Romo, dapper in his new blue overalls that were creased as if he’d just ironed them, cut in as the music turned to a waltz. He smelled not unpleasantly like a cough drop and was just as good as Stephens on the floor. As they spun through the crowd, Naomi felt the grin again creep across her face.

“You’re good at this dance,” said Elbert as they wheeled past Mayor Finley, resplendent in a yellow sequined gown that made her look like Big Bird in drag. “Who taught you?”

Naomi felt her smile fade. “My father. The waltz was his favorite.”

“He did good, teaching his daughter. But I gotta say, you should dance the next waltz with that new doc who’s got his eye on you. You two look fine together, and I have to admit, though I’m young for my years, it’s possible I’m a little old for you.”

Elbert led them backwards past the refreshments table, and for once dizzy second Naomi met Rig’s gaze. The blood roared in her ears and she stumbled. Elbert caught her, “Whoopsie! It’s one-two-three, four-five-six.” He pulled her back on beat, and she tried not to think how red-faced she must be. Or about how much he must despise her.

She’d never find out how it felt to waltz with Rig.


Mysti said...

I only know how to dance the feeling-it-groovy kind of way...except at my lil bro's wedding, he spun me around the dance floor and for those few minutes, giddy with happiness that he'd decided to marry a girl the whole family loved, I could dance to the rules.

Now I have to read your next book and find out what kind of fella recommends another fella to a gal as fine as Miss Naomi...

Sophie Littlefield said...

awww, i do adore your writing so! I was asked to dance occasionally in a bar in my hometown by old-school farm guys. They were excellent two-steppers, much as you've written here. One was so disappointed with me that he deposited me back in my chair half way through a song.

My all time favorite dance, and I wish I could watch it all night long, is the NC shag.

Lisa Hughey said...

Rachael--can't wait to read Wishes and Stitches :)

Soph- Jim and I used to do the shag. :) It is a really fun dance. I don't think I really remember how any more.

Jeri Hoag said...

I love to dance, but couldn't follow any steps. I don't care that I'm not a great dancer I just love feeling the music. I cannot wait to read the next book. That teaser just made me crave more.

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