The second dance out of the season was this Thursday. We danced out in Otley, as we did last year, but we changed the pubs around slightly. The Horse and Farrier had only just opened last year so we didn’t have any plans to dance there. Being a market town tavern pub it was stocked with some absolutely fantastic beers, and the decor was quite nice, including lots of posters from foreign and historic pub/brewing companies.
We were quite lucky yesterday. The weather started out absolutely miserable. It rained most of the day, and it was just sticky, but still a bit cold. It didn’t really seem to have much of the benefits of it being sticky (warm). As it got closer and closer to the dance out time the weather all cleared up, and a bit of sunshine shone down on us. There were a few puddles to avoid but mostly that wasn’t too much of a problem. One issue of wearing all whites is that a dirty puddle can completely ruin a dance out. When you only have 2 sets of whites, and 1 set of white socks and not enough white stuff to put in the wash with it, it tends to be a right pain to only put a couple of trousers in the wash for it to be cleaned the next week.
We danced out with Oakworth. Oakworth’s Mark has also danced with Leeds during the practice season so he kind of fits between both camps. Also, most of the more experienced Leeds side ended up dancing with Oakworth, as they were a little short of numbers. There’s sense in having your own traditions, and style, as it differentiates yourself from other teams, but it’s nice to have traditions that you can all come together with to dance. It’s worth dancing different styles of the same dance so you can quickly jump into any dance for another side and make it look just as uniform. However useful this is though, nothing would compare to having your own style, and practising it to make it look absolutely flawless.
The Horse and Farrier had lots of space to do heys, and lots of room for people to sit. There wasn’t much of a crowd, but some people just don’t know how to have a good time!
The next pub we danced in last year. The Wetherspoons pub The Bowling Green is similar to lots of other Wetherspoons. You can tell when you’re in one as they all seem to follow the same style. The selection of beers is the same as most other wetherspoons so it’s pretty much just a standard pub. We danced outside inbetween the benches, with not much room at all. It was at this time that the wind really started to pick up with the umbrella keeping the few spits of rain off us nearly blowing away if it wasn’t for our musician grabbing it before it blew away. Chris’ drink did blow over though all over another dancer’s coat. Why a morris dancer would allow his pint to blow over is beyond me, but some people just put different priorities on things.
As it has already been discussed there wasn’t much room at the Bowling Green, but we did our best dancing some of our Bampton dances, and some of our Sherborne classics. A few oddington dances made an appearance, although there was a bit of confusion over the First of June and Constant Billy. As we all know the First of June is tap tap thwock thwock, and Constant billy is tap tap tap, tips butts tips butts…or is it the other way around? Either way the music tells us what to do, hence the confusion!
Our next dance out is on Saturday, where we’re on the Squire’s tour.