Nicole dressing for performance of Rag Tag Tribal at Hafla

Nicole dressing for performance of Rag Tag Tribal at Hafla

I watched Nicole prepare for her performance with Rag Tag Tribal at Studio 1831 in Philadelphia, wrapping her scarf this way and that, looking fabulous and confident and exotic.  I marveled that this was my daughter, a behind the scenes woman, shy of the open stage.

So many doors she has opened for me.  I can’t imagine having not stepped into the world of belly dancing, of the connection and bond between women of so many walks of life unlike my own.

Dance has always been a part of the fiber of my life.  Whenever I strayed too far from it beckoned me back to it.  How I wish I had been exposed to belly dancing, tribal belly dancing, at an earlier age.  But then, I would have devoted myself to dancing and not to painting.  Now I have a bit of both.  I dance, not as a performer, and I paint.  I have the joy of painting dancers and I have the thrill of watching Nicole dance.  I doubt I will ever be able to express what that means to me to watch the flow of the fabric around her body, the movement, the rhythm, the expression of her hands.  She is a part of me and she is totally herself.

I love the striped socks beneath the flowing skirt.  If I ever get lost in this world I will find my way back because Nicole will have tied one of her striped socks somewhere as a sign to guide me  home.