catching up: cemetery, cross fold

Early Saturday afternoon we drove to Colma, the Necropolis of the Bay Area (established largely as cemetery space for San Francisco when that city first outlawed any new and later evicted all existing cemeteries within city limits), where Jeff’s father is interred at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery (also the resting place of Joe DiMaggio, assassinated San Francisco mayor George Moscone, and all former San Francisco Catholic Archbishops).

mid-century chapels at holy cross cemetery in colma

The chapels at Holy Cross are contained in a small circular building that appears to date from the 1950s or 1960s, due to its Googie-style architecture. It looks as much a bowling alley as a church. Above, the front view from the cemetery entrance. Below, a side view from one of the crypts.

mid-century chapels at holy cross cemetery in colma

That evening I got all decked out in leather pants and vest (not part of my usual costume, these were gifts and I’ve worn them only a few times, specifically to square dance events), and headed over to the Leather and Lace square dance hosted by one of the SF gay square dance clubs. As I’ve noted before, I used to be really heavily into square dancing, from 1994 through 2001, dancing several nights a week, travelling around the country–and Canada–to club events and convention, and having reached the C2 level (modern western square dancing is divided into levels that get progressively more difficult; it starts with Basic/Mainstream, proceeds to Plus, then through two levels of Advanced, and finally to four levels of Challenge; C2 is the second Challenge level). But around the time I lost my dot-com job, and my dad got so sick, I dropped out of the activity and never got back into it. I had been a very strong (modesty aside) Advanced dancer and reasonably competent and confident at C1, but hadn’t spent nearly enough time dancing C2 to even begin to feel comfortable with it.

When we decided to move out to the Bay Area, I told Jeff I thought I’d start dancing again. I had made lots of terrific friends through the activity, and thought it would be a good way for me to quickly and easily establish my own social network, given that he already would have his family and high school and college friends out here.

Saturday night was my first foray back. Honestly, I’m not sure I’ll go again. On the positive side, it was great to see the three people I knew: Andy, who did a fantastic job calling the dance, and whose calling I’ve particularly missed, Greg and Rich (apparently Geo and Patrick showed up after I’d already left, dammit). I had hoped I’d know more of the crowd, or that dancers I knew would attend, but neither turned out to be the case. And for whatever reason, I just wasn’t able to connect with the largely unfamiliar-to-me crowd. Only one person I didn’t know spoke to me at all–to be fair, he was a really sweet man, and I had a nice time chatting and dancing with him. And perhaps it was something I brought to the evening that was offputting; I know that not having danced in over five years I was feeling very self-conscious and not very confident about my ability to remember the calls, even at Mainstream and Plus, and that could have contributed to my wallflowerness. Or maybe I was just way too sizzling hot in my tight leather pants, and everyone was afraid to talk to me <grin />. I absolutely don’t want to presume any unfriendly intent, because I honestly don’t think that’s the case, but the outcome was the same; I just didn’t feel welcome, nor was I having much fun sitting by myself.

So I left about only an hour and a half, having danced just two tips, and treated myself to a venti pumpkin spice frappucino on the way home. Whipped cream and caffeine made me feel much better.

In the meantime, Jeff had gone down the Peninsula to have dinner and spend the evening with Rajani, so Alex and I had the house quietly to ourselves until Jeff got home a little after midnight.