Parkinson’s and ballet

Over Christmas there was a programme on the television about the street dancing group Diversity which included a visit to a class, in London, held by the English National Ballet for those with Parkinson’s. I am trying to find out more as I think it is a wonderful idea, unfortunately I have had no response from the email address given so will need to think of another way of finding information. My love of ballet started when, as a child, I had a Girl’s Annual with a picture of Moira Shearer in the film Red Shoes.

Red Shoes

Red Shoes

The dashing son and gorgeous daughter-in-law gave me an updated DVD version of the film which I have very much enjoyed watching. This month I am going to see Onegin and Swan Lake at The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden; always a magical experience. As I will be in Australia again soon I am pleased to find that there is great interest in providing dance experience there too. Knowing Parkinson’s will only get worse makes you want to make the most of everyday!

The Parkinson’s choir “Good Vibrations” is preparing for their world premier as part of a local jazz evening. We will be singing three songs including “Sway” and “Cry me a River” – work in progress rather than a polished performance! I visited an elderly friend recently and we sang some of the songs together. She put me to shame knowing all the words and keeping to the tune!

We have had two more meetings of the Parkinson’s Service Users Panel for Sussex and thought hard about how we can make the information available through the “Parkinson’s UK” charity accessible to more people; no-one needs to be alone. This is particularly important when diagnosis is first given.

Lunching with friends has started well in 2015 with a visit to a castle and an English tapas restaurant. So many great venues in Sussex! I have realised that the latest trend to use a kind of soup/pasta plate for main courses is not very easy; I find the angle of the fork tricky so prefer a flat plate! The amiable husband and I went to a local Michelin starred restaurant for our wedding anniversary recently, lots of exercise needed to compensate for all that eating!

The first walk of the year was to London with the Theme of The Great Fire of London which of course started in 1666 near to what is now The Monument.

The Monument

The Monument

I don’t know that part of the city very well, such fabulous old buildings including churches such as St Mary-le-Bow in Cheapside (according to tradition a true Cockney must be born within earshot of the sound of Bow Bells) and St Magnus the Martyr. Most city churches were rebuilt after the fire by Sir Christopher Wren, what an amazing architect! So many churches now seem to be offering cafes and free music concerts, I can’t wait to visit again.

As winter greyness continues in England I am beginning to look forward to a month in the warmth of Australia in March…..