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MUSINGS If the shoe fits

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Dancing shoes

If the shoe fits


Diary of a home bird
Ciara Galvin

YOU know when I said I was a bad dancer? Well I meant it. So bad, in fact, that I ended up injuring myself recently while shakin’ a leg. On stage.
Serving as a chorus member with Ballinrobe Musical Society for this year’s production of ‘All Shook Up’, I inadvertently pulled a muscle in my back.
I had a funny feeling that my dance partner and I were getting too cocky with our dance routine – which, may I add, was executed on top of a balcony more than ten feet above the stage. No pressure!
Martin, the Christopher Dean to my Jayne Torvill decided by show four that my graceful lean backwards should be more dramatic. The result? Me sitting at work with an unattractive heat pack stuck to my back, popping painkillers like smarties. I even annoyed my physiotherapist brother via text about what I could do to ease the pain ahead of the next show.
Anyway, the show had to go on, and after a blunt word of warning to my dance partner before we went on stage (‘Don’t you dare fling me around the place’), we got through it unscathed. However, the dance injury took me out of contention for ‘my Everest’: the Tourmakeady ‘Out of the Woods 8k’. The aforementioned brother gave me strict instructions that the only exercise was allowed I do was the one he prescribed for me that involved a resistance band.
My back wasn’t the only ‘mishap’ during the week of the show. I also managed to break a pair of stage shoes. If you can imagine, these bad boys are about as attractive as a pair of earrings from the Pat Butcher School of Fashion. A black shoe with one very important strap. This important strap decided to come apart as I was walking off stage (thank God I was only walking) on the second last show. Impressively, this is the second year in a row this has happened. In the middle of a dance at a dress rehearsal last year I managed to break the heel off a boot.
Cue the panic. I had 15 minutes to solve the strap problem or I would be dancing in my feet in the opening of the second act. There I was running the halls of Ballinrobe Community School looking for a solution. And, instead of actually verbally communicating what was wrong (the running had me out of breath), I just poked my foot at passersby, hoping one of them would have a spare pair of size sixes knocking about!
Randomly bumping into our quick-thinking stage manager John, I was soon sitting backstage being gaffer taped up. Of course as one shoe had to be taped on, so too did the other, for matching purposes. The devil is in the detail, I guess. Now, let me tell you, if the shoes were ugly to start with, half a roll of the black thick adhesive tape really didn’t do them any favours.
Despite worrying about the inquisitive looks from the audience, I once again got through the dancing, without anyone noticing anything (other than maybe me being out of sync with my dance group). It was only at the final scene that my oblivious friend looked down at my feet and proclaimed ‘What in God’s name are you wearing?!’.
All in all, I had the best week ever with my ‘BMS family’. I’m disappointed with not being able to do the Great Lakes Challenge run, but there are still three runs left. Perhaps to prevent further injury, I might gaffer tape myself into all my shoes from now on.

In her fortnightly Diary of a Home Bird column, Ciara Galvin reveals the trials and tribulations of a twenty-something year old still living with her parents.