Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Shiny things, men in uniform AND fireworks!

So A couple off weeks ago I was invited by my fabulous cousins to attend the dress rehearsal of the South African tattoo. This is the advert:

Basically my cousin's fiancee was dancing in it and as he was helping around backstage the free tickets managed to get redistributed to his younger sister and she offered one to me! I was super-excited as I wanted to go last year but didn't get around to it until the tickets were sold out... Plus I had no idea that my soon-to-be cousin does Highland dancing! And the cousin who gave me the ticket (therough the other cousin of course) drove me there and home which was SO nice! We also got to catch up a bit which is nice as we were almost inseparable as young kids and then kind of took our own paths as we grew up.

The show was so much fun! There were fireworks, the lights were pointed at the sky (it was outdoors) which meant that we got to pretend that there was a UFO above our heads until the performance started (I am easily amused) and we got to sit in the second row from the front and see EVERYTHING!

As I can't write about everything without it taking until next week I will do a Things I Learned list:

  • You can be an individual while wearing a kilt - one of the guys looked exactly like I'd imagine a goth-piper to be. He was dressed exactly like everyone else, but the long hair and earrings remained, and the attitude was still there!
  • We have drum majorettes in this country. I had no idea. They were adorable, with their big smiles plastered on and so much enthusiasm.
  • There are local groups suppteaching music and dance to kids here, and they were incredible! Watching a few hundred kids doing some really fast-paced gumboot dancing is not something I will forget in a hurry.
  • Yellow kilts look suspiciously like skirts, particularly when the men choose to wear them short...
  • Rifle drills are AMAZING!
  • It's easy to see who is enjoying themselves and who isn't - and how easy it is to ignore the performers just going through the motions and watch the ones who are smiling and really getting into it.
  • Flag-throwing people from Italy are very Italian. And very skilled considering they did all their flag-throwing stunts with the wind blowing rather harad!
  • I'm not quite sure why there was a stunt-motorcyle exhibition, but it was unbelievable! There are very talented (and crazy) people out there!
  • The marching band leader guys (I should know the name for them) take themselves very seriously. There was a world champion leading one section and he didn't even flinch or smile or blimk too much. We discussed his inner emotions in depth from the stands.
  • The Highland Dancers were really good! Not that I can talk as I was *cough*forced*cough* into it when I was four and never made any progress at all besides deciding that the swords were fun to play with between lessons. And I think it's very cool that my soon-to-be cousin can do it!
  • When the older men from the SA Navy went off to the side to play electric guitars and drums for us we realised that there's no age limit on playing what you want to!
  • I want to go to Burundi and hear their drummers again. They had the most incredible energy (and giant smiles) and the vibrations from the drums kind of resonated in my collarbone and it was one of the most amazing experiences ever.

So I I'll definitely try and go again next year! Failing that... anyone keen for a trip to Burundi?


Leia said...

Oh wow! I never would have thought that flag throwers from Italy looked like Italians! Who knew???

po said...

Drum majorettes are "drummies" right? Arer you kidding me, drummies is huuuuuge in SA! Well, it was in Durbs. It was a very competitive sport.

Becca Christensen said...

I love a good Italian stallion (man) - can you hook a sister up? ; ]

Cinema Minima said...

"The precision of mass military dance"

Sounds kinda scary. Anyway, the military be out there doing butch war stuff, not prancing around in skirts.

Lol. It all looks quite spectacular. Sounds like you know how to have a good party with drums in SA. Can't wait for the World Cup, though I just saw District 9, so I hope the big spaceship doesn't come back. That would be really embarrassing.

The Mutant said...

I will say nothing more about the top apart from this:

I want a kilt.

That is all.

EEbEE said...

in a peaceful world all military personnel will be forced to do synchronized dancing for a living. Their rage and bloodlust will only be satisfied by playing percussion instruments...

...really loudly!

so there.