16 November 2015

When Worlds Collide - Jeremey Vine, #Strictly and Me.

Sometimes I dream I am dancing a Waltz.

It's something I learned as a young girl and the 'conscious co-operation' that Robert Holden talks about in his book 'Happiness Now' is something that never leaves you. It is a delight and it is something that my soul misses, even all these years later.

My sister, some special friends and I used to trek up to the local Bill and Ann Legge School of Ballroom and Latin American Dance a good few times a week and, to the disconcertation of our parents, we were all always thrashing out Jives to Abba's Waterloo in our living rooms, Quicksteps in the kitchens and Sambas, Rumbas and Cha Cha Chas wherever we could get away with them.  None of us ever got to grips with the Tango or a Foxtrot, but we could follow anyone who could lead us and even though none of us competed, we all managed to get to a few medals of attainment.


ballroom dancing, latin american dancing, strictly come dancing, strictly,
My dancing certificates still proudly kept in a safe place!

One by one, as the older girls amongst us went on to senior school, homework sadly took its place.

However, just before we'd all left, the best boy in our class (and there were remarkably few) would ask me to Waltz with him.  He and his partner were very ambitious with their dancing and had loads of private lessons.  Bearing in mind how young we all were, the rest of us didn't really appreciate them forever showing off their skillz, but for that particular dance, he would often choose to whizz me around the studio floor instead of her and despite it being a struggle to keep up, it was worth it, because, for that short time, perhaps once a week, I would feel like a Dancing Queen!

Then he'd dump me again, obvs. 

But my he's not the man in my dreams.  That's someone who is not always recognizable.  Once it was a man I used to know and with whom there's never been any romantic involvement.  It's nearly twenty years since we've had any contact and we never discussed dancing, so it's an odd thing (although he is very George Clooney like so my subconscious is clearly switched on!) and yet, still, the magical memories come back.          

Nowadays, I must settle for having introduced the children to Strictly Come Dancing and we Waltz around at home really rather badly, but it's fun. 

Which brings me to another part of my life that's decidedly in the present.  You may remember me recently revealing a quite longstanding but confidential crush on Jeremy Vine, the lunch-time presenter on Radio 2. Although I was a bit miffed when he took over from Jimmy Young yonks ago, he quickly won me round with his wit and amazing devil's advocate during debates on his show.  He clearly loves his music and I admire a clever man, so he has honestly been very good company while I've been a Stay-at-Home mum and it's a joy to be able to continue listening to the station since starting my new job.    

But can you imagine how startling it was when these two secret worlds of mine recently collided?  Once the news was released about Jeremy Vine joining this season's Strictly as one of their celebrity contenstants, I went into a panic, fearing my fairly harmless feelings were going to lurch quite seriously in one direction or another! 

I needn't have worried though.  It turns out he's really very gangly - to the extent Craig Revel Horwood, the harshest of the judges, said it was like a lotto for where his limbs would land last week and, another one, Bruno, compared him to being like Woody from Toy Story as he was dressed in a cowboy outfit!

Admittedly, when the boys and I watched the film in tribute the next day, we found it difficult to disagree, but we have enjoyed watching him do his best nevertheless.

Unfortunately, this week was his last.  He took an enormous amount of flack in characteristically good spirit and was massively popular.  He received a standing ovation from everyone present as he thanked everyone involved and his partner praised his dedication, passion and love of dancing.  His good grace refelected very well on him and he was described as 'An awesome bloke' by Anita, one of his fellow competitors.  


jeremy vine, strictly, woody, toy story, strictly come dancing,
His accidental Woody impersonation, his response to a member of the public missing the point and he has his partner embarking on a Waltz.
But he never stood a chance.

So it comes as some relief that my worlds will no longer collide, causing an inordinate amount of wincing and we can all go back to normal. 

Len has already threatned to pickle his walnuts, Darcey will always give Craig daggers for ever single one of his scores and we will continue to wonder what on earth Claudia Winkleman is going to come out with next!  Her irreverence is making Tess irrelevant.  

And at home, we will be treated to a running commentary from the youngest.  He will make notes of everyone's scores, and recall who gave them what last time.  I will rave about every single exquisite dress and keep saying how they should get rid of the gimmicks and just get on with the dancing.  

The eldest will be inspired.  He will learn to love to Waltz and, all being well, it won't be just in his dreams. 

14 comments:

  1. I'm happy that you can just go back to watching Strictly without feeling bad about Jeremy. I love J's tweet about setting a good example to his young daughters - it's a fabulous life lesson and one that we could all do with learning!

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    1. Ah thank you Izzie and for reminding me when he began that my admiration / crush was not longer so secret! He has been a joy tbh - giving it all he had and just enjoying the magic. I've been very proud of him in a weird way! xx

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  2. I like Jeremy Vine on the radio, and it's clear from his participation on Strictly that he's a really nice man too, a a lovely dad by all accounts. Are you going to take up dancing again? Xx

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    1. He was a hoot, wasn't he? So self-deprecating and humble and decent about it being the trying and having fun that matters. I'd love to take up dancing again. Next husband ;) xx

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  3. I think it is wonderful that you have kept your dancing certificates, I have my grandmother's piano certificates and they bring me such joy to look at even though I never had the chance to hear her play. I for the waltz, I think I've danced it once or twice years ago, not something I could do now.

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    1. Thank you Catherine. I'd quite forgotten about them but they're in an old photo album of stuff and were to hand, so thought it would be good to check them out. Strictly has definitely re-lit the fire of passion that dancing can ignite and I am sure you dance in your heart more often than not - it comes across that you're like that?! I also think it's wonderful you have your grandmother's piano certificates :) xxx

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  4. Ooh Anya, me too! I think Jeremy is fabulous, and if Kate On Thin Ice is reading this - you see! I am not the only one! I would love to learn to dance, I wanted to as a child but it wasn't to be. So elegant and graceful. We love Strictly too, just for that xx

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    1. Oh I am so glad you appreciate him too Polly. Didn't know you're mates with Kate who's not so keen! We have an ally in each other :)) It's never too late to learn to dance, you know - as you can see from ALL the contestants on the show, who clearly fall in love with it. You'll never regret it. Hope you're well xxx

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  5. I tried to comment yesterday.... I just wanted to say how lovely this post is, it exudes a warmth for Strictly and Jeremy.
    I want to see you in a sequinned ball gown now!

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    1. Thank you Gemma, That's how it feels. Never say never re the gown I guess lol! X

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  6. I found myself in tears when Jeremy got voted out - what's that all about??!!

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    1. Oh bless. I think a lot of us of a similar age were rooting for him! xx

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  7. I read this when you first posted it but didn't get round to comment so I've popped over this morning. So much to love about this - your childhood memories, love of dance and your secret crush.
    I learned Highland dancing as a child, entered competitions, won medals etc, but, like you, as a teenager, other things took over: school, homework, other interests. But the discipline and joy in dancing has never left me - I still think I have good posture because of the training.

    As to Jeremy Vine, I love listening to him at home too - maybe because he is a similar age to us, with similar music interests, that we form a connection. Anyway I applauded him thought his Strictly 'journey' - what a good sport!

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    1. Thank you very much for coming back Trish. I always appreciate your comments and am pleased to see you have also enjoyed the love and satisfaction that such dancing can bring and well done you for entering competitions and winning medals! I follow your forays into the theatre and am away that you're still dancing, albeit on a different stage and am extra delighted for you now I know a little bit more about your background.
      And re Jeremy - it was a bit of a worry whether my affections would go one way or another, but they haven't. Like you, I admire him for being a sport :)) xx

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