Sally in the Zen

Confessions of a Befuddled Zen Buddhist


Graceful is a ballerina.

Elegant, slender, trim and lean.  When the ballerina walks, she’s grace in motion.  Effortless, sleek, like poetry floating in air.  Every movement is smooth, every motion is mesmerizing.

When I see grace is motion, I find myself thinking Wow, that was grace in motion.

Now that we got that out of the way, let me just say…

…that’s so not me.

Just so we’re clear.

I dribble food on my shirt constantly.  If there’s a crumb hanging, I slurp it up. 

Just because, you know, waste not, want not.

My most favorite sweatshirt that I sleep in is thread-worn and quite faded.  It doesn’t matter to me that I have to wear another sweatshirt with this sweatshirt.  It’s just so comfortable and soft.

And not even Zen Master can get me to toss that lovely item away. 

My sneaker size is a 8 1/2. 

Yup, I’m a big foot.

And I don’t dance.

I have absolutely no rhyme or rhythm.  When I dance, people think I’m twitching. 

Enough said.

So, with my rhymeless, twitchy self, I walked to my new gym and shuffled into a Zumba class.

I know it’s dancing, with hips-shaking, butt-wagging, arms-flaring movements but I need the cardio.  If it wasn’t for the fact that I needed the cardio, I wouldn’t even touch Zumba.

What you gonna do?

When I walked into the room, it was packed with anxious and eager ladies who were ready to get rolling.  There were so many of them in the room, that it left little personal space around me.  And when the lights dimmed and the instructor walked onto the raised platform with her microphone and headset on her head, she pushed a button and the music began. 

This was my first Zumba class and I checked my inhibitions at the door.  I was resigned to the fact that it was useless to be embarassed about my twitching because I just needed the cardio.

I couldn’t see the instructor so I followed the ladies in front of me.  Let me just state for the record that there are so ladies who take their Zumba quite seriously.  They mimic their movements just so, toss their hair back just so, and reach their arms out just so.



It was ok.

Because it was so packed with people, I ended up in a corner right under the speakers.  After an hour of jumping, doing grapevines, strutting forward and back, doing endless butt wriggles, arm flares and lots of twitching, I left that place soaked with sweat and winded.  I think the sweat was more from heat that came from that mass of bodies waggling in that room.

And my left ear was deaf.

At the start of the class, I overheard someone say that the more you do Zumba, the better it becomes.  I would become more familiar with the movements and the instructor who was commanding such a packed house was top-notch. 

All good to hear.

Would I go back?


Because my twitchy self needs the cardio.

And it was fun.

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