Contents of this post:
- A little more on my blogging project!
- Share a short story by me!
- Mention my good friend Grace (Charis Rae) and her new blog + blog tour!
So, as you can see, I have gathered a load of blogging bits and pieces and I’m going to squeeze them all into one post. I’m actually looking forward to it.
Right, firstly, I would like to say that I’m so grateful and excited for all the responses I have had, and have yet to come, for my blogging project, A Passion For The World. It came as a result of my curiosity into other people’s passions and what they believe in. It was also a product of my desire to want to connect and extend my circle of inspiring and unique and passionate bloggers. You’re all amazing!
Now, I want to share a short story that I wrote for my Gran about six months ago. She cried when I read it to her. I think that it has a good message to it, I’d be interested to hear all your interpretations. I hope you enjoy, though I must say, my writing skills have improved greatly since I wrote this and it may seem a little different to my usual pieces.
Dancing For My Life by Gracie Chick
The buildings loomed on the horizon, rusty metal roofs, crumbling walls. Sage slung her bag over her shoulder and began to walk down the grotty, deserted road. She hurried past a car with smashed windows and two youths leaned against a graffitied wall, sneering out from under black hoods.
Around the bend she reached the gates, tops lined with barbed wire. She pressed her face against the bars and peered into the industrial estate. It was abandoned and an empty tin of paint blew across the yard, filling the silence with a metallic clanging. Sage pushed her dark curls out of her face and looked up at a sign on the gate. It had a picture of a snarling dog, poised ready to pounce on the unfortunate cameraman.
She picked at the peeling paint nervously. Then, with a glance over her shoulder, she ran doubled over along a high brick barrier. She crouched down and pulled aside a bushy, clinging shrub to reveal a jagged hole. Throwing her bag through first, she carefully pulled herself through, scraping against the rough broken edges as she went.
On the other side she quickly crossed the open space, looking around her worriedly. Her feet sounded uncomfortably loud on the concrete surface as she made for a long, wide hangar about 20ft away.
A huge thin metal sheet hung twisted on flaking hinges passed for the door. The bottom right hand corner was bent upwards and Sage pressed herself down onto her belly and wriggled through the gap. Once her head was through, she quickly pulled her feet through too as she always felt an unnerving sensation that someone was going to grab her shoes and yank her back.
Inside, the hangar was entirely vacant. Sage relaxed. She strode across to the other end with a quiet confidence. She looked out of place here, a teenage girl in skinny jeans and a leather jacket walking amongst rubble and ruin of building materials.
At the other end she disappeared behind a stack of smashed stone and pieces of decaying wood. She went right up to a small door in the hangars tin wall and unhesitantly spun what looked like a ship’s wheel. A creaking sound filled the space, echoing up to the high ceiling and bouncing back. Sage stepped backwards as the door fell open like a drawbridge.
She stepped inside and found herself faced with a huge boulder. She was in a sort of tunnel, hidden under the concrete yard. Suddenly the boulder began to shift and roll and Sage smiled as she heard groans and moans the other side. Three rosy faces came into view. Two boys and a girl stood beside the stone. They all wore colourful leotards and the girl had her blonde hair in a bun. “Hey Sage!” they greeted her and together they walked down a corridor. It smelt of earth and dust.
Gradually the passage widened into a huge round room. The floor was made of smooth, worn wooden boards and four teens in leotards were swirling around it, feet light and bodies strong and flexible. The curved sides of this giant arena were covered in plaster over the mud and kids sat on benches chatting or lacing their ballet shoes.
This world was so different to the one above the ground.
Despite coming here every day after school, The Burrow Dance Academy never ceased to amaze Sage. Two years ago one woman had decided that life should be better for youth living in inner city London, that they deserved brighter futures. Sasha Fuchsia, professional ballet dancer, was that woman. She let nothing stop her in her mission. When the company that owned the derelict buildings denied her permission to start her Academy there, she got the kids together and, using teamwork, they all built the Academy underground, in secret, using camouflaged entrances and riddly passwords. Excepting the dancers and their families, no one knew about the existence of the Academy.
There was so much comradeship between the pupils. They had all contributed to place that was their haven, their escape from the harsh realities of their lives. They knew they could come here and relax, let their feelings out, express themselves through dance and movement, to not be judged. To them that was very special and rare.
Sage went into a little hollowed out room going off the main dance floor. She admired the way that the mud had been chipped away bit by bit with crude homemade tools and everyday items like kitchen knives and gardening trowels. She remembered her 12-year-old self, two years ago, working on this very spot. She smoothed the wall with her hand.
“Sage!” It was a female voice. Sage snapped back out of the past and into the warm embrace of a thirty something woman with curly black hair and a friendly smile that made you feel as though it was especially for you. She released Sage and looked at her with hazel eyes that burnt like fire, but like the flames in a fireplace, cosy and comforting.
“Sage, well done on your Fish Dives. I’ve been watching you and Blue closely. You’ve almost perfected it, you know.” “Thank you, Sasha.” Sage looked surprised, but pleased with her teacher’s praise. “You have an incredible gracefulness about you, Sage. And that is a great asset for a pro ballet dancer to have, a natural elegance and ease of motion. Anyhow, go get a leotard. I want you two to dance next.”
Sage browsed the rack of sparkling, rainbow leotards that Sasha had picked up second-hand from some of the ‘contacts’ she had in the dancing world. She was thinking about the words Sasha had used: ‘pro ballet dancer’. She wondered if she’d ever get that far, she hoped so.
Her mind strayed to the Fish Dive lift that she and Blue were about to perform. Sasha would be watching, as well as other pupils. She felt the pressure. It was elegant, Sasha was right, but Sage knew that any mistakes would be spotted immediately. She grabbed a silver leotard and disappeared into the changing room.
Coming out, she looked so much different. She looked like a dancer. Her limbs were long and muscular and her hair was twisted into a bun and pinned on top of her head with needles and clips. She stepped out into the main arena and sat down on a bench. She shivered, it was cold underground.
She closed her eyes in concentration as she prepared to let everything go in the fluidity of the ballet. “Hey!” Someone’s voice made her jump. A boy of around her age sat beside her on the bench. He had curly blonde hair and a young, cheery face. “You ready?” he reached for her hand and squeezed it. “I guess so.” Sage said, smiling at him.
He jumped up and pulled her to her feet. She looked sideways at him and they shared an understanding look. Then they ran onto the floor and were soon engrossed in the beauty and the closeness of their dance.
Sage lost herself in it all. When she leaped, he caught her, when she leaned, he held her. They twirled and jumped and flourished in perfect unison. The music controlled their movements, letting them out and reigning them in.
Then it was the moment of the lift. Blue slipped his hand around Sage’s waist and effortlessly lifted her down from his shoulder and held her low to the ground. Sage extended her arm so that it skimmed the floor and bent her leg up against his chest, so that they were pressed together, like one intertwined dancer.
Their audience clapped and cheered and the two teens took a bow before running off into one of the side rooms together. “That was incredible!” said Sage, breathlessly. “I know.” Blue replied, with a thrilled laugh.
They stood in silence for a moment. “Do you ever think about your future?” Blue asked suddenly. “Yeah, sometimes. Why?” Sage smiled across at him. “Well, I often think about how Sasha changed everything.” “In what way?” “I guess she saw our potential. Two years ago, I was thirteen. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I was depressed and anxious, rubbish in school. Had few friends. Sasha believed in me more than I believed in myself.” “I think that I want to continue with ballet. Maybe become a professional.” Sage blurted out. “Really? Same here!” Blue said with surprise. “When did you decide?” “I don’t really know exactly. I mean, I never thought I was good enough, but after today…..” She trailed off.
“It was magic, wasn’t it?” Blue voiced her thoughts. “Yeah, it was.” she replied with a laugh. “It totally was!”
“Why do you dance, Blue?” Sage asked as they walked back up the corridor. “Because I love it.” he replied immediately. “What about you?” Sage had been planning her answer. She took a deep breath and said “I dance for my life, Blue. I dance because I know my life is so much lighter and happier when I do.”
Here is a visual guide to the steps of the Fish Dive Ballet Lift that Sage and Blue performed:
I really hope you liked that! Now, I have a dear friend to tell you about. Gracie from The Girl Upstairs has always been an inspiration to me. When I was just starting blogging she was so kind, helpful and nice to me. I felt I could ask her anything. We are the perfect example that two very different bloggers can have a friendship. I am friends with Grace, or Charis Rae, because of her friendly, happy, cheery spirit. I admire her for that.
I am quite an established blogger now and don’t call on Grace half as much as I used to, but I’ll never forget the times she replied to my questions and queries with a single complaint. So now, when she’s in the middle of an exciting move to another brand new blog, of course I wanted to help her! You, reader, need to go over to her blog now and sign up for her blog tour. You get exclusive access to like and comment and you get to do a guest post with her on your blog. I’m not amazing at explaining this, am I? So head over to The Girl Upstairs for all the details. Thank you!
Okay, I think that’s finally all! Goodbye and please leave me a comment! I appreciate them all.