I am totally, completely, ridiculously besotted with Zumba at our quirky little YMCA in The Beav. Perhaps it's my not-so-secret obsession with "Dancing with Stars." I understand now, completely and no longer without snarky judgment, why so many celebrity dancers crack.
Do you know how freaking hard it is to master the heel-toe at a 4- and 2-count?
But, on the other hand, perhaps it's why I now love, at the age of 62, Bruno Mars ("Uptown Funk") and Pitbull (sorry, but "Fireball" is awesome. . . although, come to think of it, I noticed recently it's been pulled from Zumba playlist. Maybe because, after watching the video, it's just slightly naughty?). Anyway. The musical mash-up of Latin, hip hop and funk is deliriously wonderful.
Perhaps it's because of the Zumba Ladies. There are veterans (ie, they mostly know most of the steps) There are newbies (me!) -- who the veterans cluck over like a new chick: They gave my best piece of advice the first week of class: "Don't even bother using your arms." As if it's humanly possible.
I'm still in the Limited Arm Use mode. But the ZLs assure me it will come. It will come.
Perhaps it's because Zumba Ladies work to their strengths, sometimes looking wonderfully graceful and athletic with small steps and graceful arms. And sometimes stopping in the middle of class to chat with a Zumba neighbor.
Perhaps it's because, after 8 weeks into the Zumba games, the ZLs come up and say how amazing it is that I've caught on so quickly. That would be after a class where the ZLs and instructor were going south. . . and I was most decidedly going north-by-northwest.
And perhaps, it's those golden moments, when the Zumba Ladies tackle a new turn move, or as I like to think of it, unleash yet another Zumba zombie apocalypse of flying arms and careening middle-age bodies upon the YMCA.
And most definitely, it's the little things: At last Thursday class, one of my back-row ZL posse waved me over and pressed a 500-pound a hip scarf (okay, okay 5 pounds) into my hands. It was tricked out with 3-inch long brass torpedoes quite capable, I think, of also sinking The Lusitania. She smiled and said, "Use it. I'm in Palm Desert for the next 4 weeks."
Thank you, Zumba sister. I will. In honor of your generosity, it will get a hip-shaking, torpedo-rattling workout of epic proportions while you're gone. And will still be smoking on your return.