Monday, October 19, 2015

Vivir Mi Vida

Salsa dancing, my absolute favorite!
"Voy a reír, voy a bailar, vivir mi, la, la, la, la...Voy a reír, voy a gozar, vivir mi vida, la, la, la, la, la..."  Translation:  "I'm gonna laugh, I'm gonna dance, live my, la, la, la, la...I'm gonna laugh, I'm gonna enjoy, live my, la, la, la, la."

I remember the first time I heard this song on the radio while driving in my car.  It was just earlier this year, and I felt like my spirit was going to jump out of my body!  I loved it from the beginning!  The beat, the musicality and the lyrics made me want to get up and dance.  But I'm getting ahead of myself...

My love of dancing started at the tender age of 14.  Born and raised on the border of Mexico, it seemed like every other girl my age was preparing for or having a quinceañera (a big, 15th birthday party).  It's the equivalent of an American Sweet 16 celebration.  Only, where I come from, it's comparable to a mini-wedding.  While I had the option of having one, I was not interested.

Thus, I became everyone's dama (English translation: lady—similar to a bridesmaid), which meant I got to dance in my fair share of quinceañeras.  I was in so many that I did not feel like I missed out by not having my own.  I was quite familiar with the whole process, and enjoyed it.

Being turned while dancing in my very first quinceañera.  I was hooked!
Typically, an instructor from Matamoros would come and teach us adolescents how to dance.  We learned traditional waltzes, cumbias, guapangos, and line dancing (to name a few).  Usually, there were fourteen couples made up of 7 damas and 7 chambelanes (chamberlains, or gentlemen).  The birthday girl's partner made it a total of 15 accompanying dancers.  I absolutely loved performing at these traditional parties.  And, it taught me how to dance with a partner.

While I did not do any salsa dancing during this time, it gave me the foundation I needed for it.  Originating in Cuba, salsa is similar to the traditional Mexican cumbia.  I learned how to dance this when I lived in Des Moines, Iowa, and instantly fell in love with it!  It was lots of fun and great exercise, too!  With a "one, two three...five, six, seven," beat, I quickly became familiar with artists like Celia Cruz and Marc Anthony—giants in the world of salsa, if you will.
This was a fun ladies' weekend in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
We went salsa dancing and spent a day at the spa...sigh.

Marc Anthony has always been my number one salsa artist!  I am inspired to dance a little harder and sing a little louder whenever any of his songs are played.  Now that I am married with two children, I don't get to do dancing of any sort very often.  Sure, we have dance parties in our home, but it's not quite the same.

Beau, me and Beau's beard at the Marc Anthony concert
—it was an amazing show!
You can imagine my surprise, when just two weeks ago, I was scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed and saw that my cousin, Susan, was selling a pair of Marc Anthony tickets she and her husband had purchased.  "Marc Anthony is going to be at the State Farm Arena (our local concert venue)?!"  I could scarce believe my eyes.  I immediately commented and asked if she, in fact, was selling these tickets.  We corresponded through text and she confirmed that she would sell the tickets to Beau and me at an even greater discounted price!  We couldn't say no!

And we are so glad we got to experience this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  The show was phenomenal.  Marc Anthony is not a big man, but he is a big performer.  His voice is amazing, and his passion permeates every lyric that comes out of his mouth.  The horn section, pianist and violinist in his band are all world-class musicians as well.  We have been to other concerts in the past, but this one blew them all out of the water!  Go ahead and see for yourself:



  1. I think how you felt there is similar to how I felt for my first Trans Siberian Orchestra concert. Amazed and absolutely in love with the music. :) Thank you for sharing your fun date night!

    1. I bet! I would love to experience that one day, too! Where did you see them perform? I'm glad that the State Farm Arena brings some big name acts to our humble area. ;)

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