What Katy Did - sexy salsa dancing
Last weekend, Katy drove up the coast to Pakefield for a night of non-stop salsa action with the stars.
Longing for a night of non-stop salsa, I donned my dancing gear and drove up the coast to Pontins holiday club in Pakefield, where bi-annual salsa weekenders have been attracting dancers for as long as I can remember.
The sun had said its last goodbyes as I left Ipswich at 9.45pm, with only a few hazy rays left to light the way.
Despite yawning incessantly for the entire drive, once I arrived, the infectious music put a spring into my step and I knew it was going to be a good night.
Straight away I found friends from Ipswich, both wearing glamorous, sexy dresses (I hadn't realised the dress code was tuxedos and evening gowns, so felt slightly out of place in my tight jeans and orange and pink, Hawaiian-print halter neck). After 10 minutes of nattering I was eager to get down to business so made a beeline for the busy dance floor.
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With the weekend's ballroom theme, one of the cabaret acts was Andrew Cuerden and Hannah Haarala, stars of the last Strictly Come Dancing series (he danced with Jaye Jacobs, from Holby City, and unfortunately got voted out in the second week, and she danced with Will Thorp, from Casualty, who went on to reach seventh place). The pair first performed a sexy fusion of tango and cha cha, while later wowing the crowd with a lively jive.
The two TV stars were then kept busy dancing all night but eventually I managed to tap Andrew on the shoulder. Despite being a ballroom and Latin dancer, Andrew had grasped the basic salsa steps and was easy to follow. I even managed to teach him one of the moves I learned, while being the man, at Miranda's class in Ipswich.
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Another highlight of the evening was bumping into George, a great dancer I met at last summer's event. George took me under his wing and helped me perfect a couple of basic moves, which improved my overall style.
And it appeared to work because after a couple of practice sessions, followed by a dance at the front of the main ballroom (where all the best dancers congregate to check each other out), I was asked to dance by not one but two of the top guys. The first was dressed in a kilt and black skull cap. Leading with just his finger tips, as all the most accomplished men do, he twirled me this way and that while fixing me with a rather intent gaze.
The next dance, with a Mediterranean-looking guy, was one of the best of the night as I glided around the floor, interpreting his lead and following the complex turns almost seamlessly (messing up only minimally, which is inevitable with new partners).
By the time I stumbled with aching feet out of the hall it was already light, so I decided, despite desperately needing sleep, to go down onto the beach. And I wasn't alone - a few couples had also crept down to watch the sunrise. I had a quick paddle (freezing!) then sat in awe, gazing at the beautiful glowing orb casting its first morning rays onto the sea.
How I didn't fall asleep at the wheel on the drive home I don't know. Even the Red Bull was having little effect.
Eventually, at around 7am, I fell into bed and slept solidly for eight hours. Sunday was a write-off but the sensational Saturday night of salsa had been well worth it.
Next week, Katy explains how she ended up poses in front of a big yellow truck, dressed only in a bikini and sarong.