We sat together on a bench at the Bennington Farmers Market, Kitty (aka Kat) Farnham, one of the founding members of the Bennington Beledi Tribal Belly Dancers now retired, and me, one of the newest students.
We were there to watch the Sisters of The Shawl Bellydancing.
Even though I dance with these women in class every week, I wouldn’t miss one of their shows if I can help it. It’s not just about being there to support them, I love to watch them dance. And now that I’ve been taking classes for almost a year, I can also watch them and learn.
Emily, who is member of the Sisters of The Shawl wasn’t dancing that day because she has a booth at the Farmer’s Market where she sells her baked goods and painted scarves and tea towels.
She was also keeping and eye on Callie’s two daughters, who were running back and forth between her tent and watching their mother dance. At on point one of Callie’s daughters ran up to the stage and started dancing with her mother.
I couldn’t help but think how empowering it must be for a kid to see her mother bellydance. It reminded me of how Emily said her daughter asked her when she could start bellydancing. She just thinks it’s what all girls and women do.
This performance was particularly important, because Trish was dancing in public for the first time.
I always like to get videos and photos of the dancing, but I especially wanted to get some of Trish, to help her remember the day.
She looked gorgeous in her layered skirts, coin bra over her choli and turban. Each dancer creates her own dance costume, although these three elements are an important part of ATS (American Tribal Style) Bellydancing.
I had a hard time tearing myself away, but I was meeting Jon and our friend Susan for lunch. So I got a cheese danish from Emily for the ride home, and left the Sisters of the Shawl while they were still dancing.