The repertoires of these wonderful young people, levels of professionalism and excellence in preparation, performance and coaching by their respective coaches were simply breathtaking, inspirational and moving.
But, other then the music and beautiful voices, what shifted me most into my gratitude was watching people in the audience engaging with the music. In particular, there were two small girls - maybe 3 or 4 years old - near Kazalette and me, both dressed in pink, the one with huge blonde curls all over her head and a dummy (pacifier) in her mouth,the other a bit older with a pony tail and naughty face. These girls danced joyfully for most of the afternoon, immersed in the music, with boundless energy and seemingly oblivious to anything else around them and completely uninhibited. It was an object lesson in living in the moment.
Further down the sloping lawns a stout lady in a smart black dress and sun hat just couldn't help herself - she kept getting to her feet and dancing rhythmically to the upbeat African beat, again totally free, uninhibited and simply full of the joy of the music. All around us people were engaged and engaging with the music. Some danced, some simply sat engrossed, and yet others were just there because it was cool to hang out at Makaranga on a Saturday afternoon. Those who were simply there for the picnic or to chat to each other missed a wonderful opportunity to immerse their senses in something special.
My overriding sense of the dancers, especially, was how they were unambiguously joyous, allowing the music to take them to a special place where it didn't matter what others were doing, or not doing around them and what others thought. They could simply express that authentic, playful part of themselves that we all have, but with which we find it so difficult to engage in the context of our busy, electronically controlled lives.
We all have the joy within us. Try music to help you come out to play.