Truth be told, when I talk about myself back in the eighties, I often say I was disco queen of the world. I bought more hair spray then Theresa Caputo. My hair was so big and stiff, I’m pretty sure that I sent a few people to the hospital because I poked a few eyes out while working my dance moves. Back then I could wear 5 – 7 inch stilletto heels and dance all night. I wore outfits that NO ONE in thier right mind should ever wear in public. The swiss guard of the Vatican has nothing on me. I have always loved to dance and everything that went with it. I would practice with all my gay friends because lord knows finding straight guys to dance well was a major challenge back in the day. I worked on my dance moves all week in between college, working fulltime and partying fulltime. I had VIP cards to all the clubs in the area, that got me to the head of the line. Sadly over the past 3 decades most of my dancing had been relegated to weddings, jacknjills, a cruise, and an occasional house party. One time I went to a Hufla (yes it’s spelled right and it will be in the book.) In recent years I have discovered Contra dancing which has been fun. But you know that saying that you can never go back? Well recently I had an experience where I was able, even just for a moment, be transported back in time to a feeling of the joy I use to feel when I danced back in the day. I am providing a shout out to El Floridita a Cuban restaurant/club on Vine St. in Los Angeles. Which has the best Salsa dancing Monday night event ever!!! We arrive at the restaurant which is modest in size and stature if looking at it from the outside. It has a regular store front with floor to ceiling windows with red curtains. A parquet wood dance floor at it’s center. We got there early and were presented with the best table in the house. The food was amazing try the El Floridita combo platter. Best plantains ever!!!! There was a dance instruction period from 8:00 to 8:30. Our little group stuck out like a sore thumb which I did not know until all the other people started coming in. Both men and women were dressed up to the nines. DSW warehouse had nothing on these girls shoes. All the women were beautiful. All the men were looking all nuggety ( yes, I just made up that word.) All age groups were well represented. I spent a good portion of the night reminising about my old stilettos. Here I was in my yoga pants and flipflops in all my dancing glory. There were a few brave and I must say nuggety men, beautiful to look at, that braved potentially injuring their feet with my Salsa dance moves. They seemingly came to the dance floor happily to include us, accept us, and to help teach us how to dance west coast Salsa. The instructor was wonderfully patient and worked to keep us comfortable and masterfully progressed us through the basic steps. When the instructions were complete, the band came in, the Johnny Polaco band. What a treat! The band was amazing, so talented and so fun. I have always loved Latino music because to me it sounds like happy music. As soon as the music started, the dance floor immediately filled up. We were asked to dance by multiple people. Everyone was so friendly. There were ladies sitting at the next table that I was chit chatting with and were so nice. One of our party who had lived in LA for 20 years kept saying, this is soooo not LA. This vibe in this place was great. Unfortunately it was a Monday night and I had leave early because I had to get up for 4:45am to work. So we begrudgingly left early but not before we were greeted by the owner who took a lot of time out while his place was packed, ensuring we loved the place as much as he loved the place, which we did. I highly recommend it , there is no better place to hang out on a Monday night anywhere. If you do find yourself in the LA area and decide to check out this place out and run into the really hot nuggety LA policeman in these pictures (yes he gave me permission to post these)
with great Salsa moves, just tell him Margaret thanks him and loves him from the bottom of her heart for transporting me back in time. 🙂
LOVE the story Margaret! You can’t buy or dream experiences like that. Good on ya’ for keeping your mind open to such awesome adventures 🙂 Living vicariously through your journey until I’m in the space and time to travel unabashedly again!! And I must say when that happens you better join me. HA!
I’m on the road 7×24 with a few stop over with friends and family. Everyone is welcome to come join me anytime. 🙂