This is Dedication

I am looking for a sign that says “beach umbrellas on sale.” I think I saw it at K-Mart. It is not beach season just yet, but I have other ideas for it. I am in a dance number reminiscent of Singing in the Rain, but with a twist. It takes place on sand. I am having a bit of trouble with the steps and need some extra rehearsals. They won’t let me take the prop umbrella home from the theater (they say that people never return anything). I will buy my own of a similar size and weight so I can practice when I wish. I have room on the patio to do the dance full out. In the living room, the umbrella might hit the low ceiling. If I am careful I can dance anywhere I like.

It is fun to dance with a prop. I always loved dancing with a cane in tap class. Now I am lucky to get in a play that even has a musical number. A few of us sing and dance for about five minutes with beach umbrellas held on high. We have to know the steps well so we can concentrate on the prop and keeping it steady. It is tricky but I think I can do it. When the director asks if we want extra rehearsals, I always say yes. You can never put in too many hours when you are learning something new and not just honing great skills.

One dancer keeps bumping into me and I feel like shoving my umbrella in his face to make the point. Of course, I will be polite and put up with it. I just hope that the director catches him at it, and he sees all. We keep on plugging away as would-be hoofers and it is a lot of fun. I prefer my home umbrella but it is too colorful to use during the performance. But after the show is over, it is going to look fabulous on the beach—stripes and all. I bought a matching towel because it was also on sale. Having them in the closet will encourage me to take day trips to the shore or go on a short vacation. I can loan the set out to my sister and her friends, too.

Our rendition of Singing in the Rain was actually Singin’ in the Sand and it was a hilarious send-off. People got the point and laughed. They weren’t being critical at all; they just found it funny. The review said the spoof was well done and we got accolades. They loved the beach umbrella and thought we wielded them with effortless skill. Those hours of preparation paid off.

Now the umbrellas are stored in the prop cabinet for the next usage. Who knows when that will be? When was the last time you saw one on stage? I now know where to find them and if I ever need an extra umbrella for the beach, I have the cabinet key.