July 3rd:

It didn't take quite as much time to get everything together this morning - half an hour total - which left me lots of time before my first class. Would that everyone had planned so well - as I was walking to the room at about 20 'til, I saw and heard people leaving for breakfast, and people showering. So, my 10 am class didn't start until about 10:15 or maybe 10:20. One of the cd players in the McDonald Wing room had an aux-in port and there was a dubbing jack lying around, so I left my portable speakers in their little carry bag in favor of the big speakers of the cd player.

I had 5 dances set up for the class and from the experience of the previous day I knew we weren't going to get to all 5, a fact that was even more clear from our late start. I taught Fine Companion first, which people picked up pretty easily. I skipped Gray's Inn Maske and went right to Lull Me Beyond Thee, which took a little extra time to teach, but the students got it (and even better when we did it a second time). The last dance was Mage on a Cree, since it had been the one that got me to find the EFDSS CD. There was some contention about the second chorus, but what I reconstructed pretty much fits what Playford wrote, which pretty much means that you need to do two extra repeats of the music just like I thought (this was confirmed by an independent source who was following along in her copy of Playford).

The next class was Countess Mara's Bassedance class which was interesting because she taught a different, newer and probably more correct, interpretation of how the steps are supposed to be done. That was a tough class because, though I've been doing bassedances for quite a long time, the step styles were new, so I really had to think about not only what step to do but how to do it. Those Burgundians sure had strong ankles!

Lunch was nice - the other conference must have decided not to eat in the lunch room because we had it nearly to ourselves (and it didn't look like the kitchen knew that was going to happen - there was lots of food left when I walked out at 1:30).

The last class I was going to teach was right after lunch - 2pm. I was again there early, and I tried to start things up pretty close to time. I had 4 dances prepared and knew I wasn't going to get to all of them. I taught An Old Man is a Bed Full of Bones first - it was the easiest. I skipped over Millfield because my reconstruction was so far from correct (though the dance deserves it), and taught Paul's Wharf, which had easy progressive figures and went well. Then I tried to teach Punk's Delight, which is a lot more complicated than I remembered - we managed to get through the first progressive figure, but I just couldn't reason out the second figure even from my notes, and then time ran out. Only two dances got taught, but the instructions are in the proceedings, and most other classes have only tried to teach two or maybe three dances in an hour anyway.

I sat in on the next class, which was about two balletti from Caroso. I left the McDonald Wing room and went over to Janelyn's "How to Teach ..." class, which was very informative. I hung out in the library for the pick-up dancing, but there wasn't much of it.

At 6pm I went with Sarah, Trahern, Janellyn, Mara and her husband across Missenden Road to the pub and grill in the hotel there (not Rydges) - they've got a menu of $5 items like steak, fish and chips, etc, which price applies only if you purchase alcohol. Fortunately, the non-alcohol price wasn't much more - I got my steak, mashed potatoes, and a "lemonade" (which in Australia is a soda, much like 7-up, rather than a fruit juice) for $8.50. Unfortunately there was some kind of major snafu in the kitchen, cause Sarah, who ordered her steak after I did, got hers about 20 minutes before I got mine. Fortunately, it was a decent (not great) steak, and certainly cheap even if those had been American dollars.

Went back to my room and put on my green doublet and acoutrements, then went down to the dance, which started at about 8pm. Del had put together a set list of requested dances, and even though I had requested Fine Companion early enough that it was third on the request list, his final list didn't have that on it. It did have Millison's Jig, which I had taught yesterday, though. I actually did a goodly number of the dances, had a good time, got into some philosophical dance discussions, including one about why my reconstruction of Lull Me Beyond Thee left out something in the last chorus that I'm going to have to take a closer look at, maybe tomorrow, maybe when I get back home.

Left the dance at about 11:15 - Del had abbreviated the last of the four sets (though he left in Millison's Jig, which went very well considering that the music was new to the musicians), and was going to go into a short set of on-the-spot requests before the chairs and tables had to be loaded back into the dining room and I knew I wanted to get a little more sleep than the night before. So here I am typing this as the clock is about to tick over to midnight, looking forward to two great classes tomorrow.

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