Jane Austen Festival, Part One

We’ve only just arrived home from our trip to Regency England (aka, Louisville KY) and am enjoying reliving memories from it….

…Like my senior portraits from the graduating class of 1798. I was voted Least Likely To Die During Childbirth.

Thank you, birthing hips.

And then there was the Regency Ball…

I think I may have set my expectations a wee bit high that I’d be dancing until my slippers hurt and I blame it on the Contra dancing group from a couple weeks ago. They had explained to me that it is considered rude to dance with the same person the entire night, even if he/she is your date…. Especially if there are more females than males, or vice-versa.

This was not the case Saturday night for little Miss Carolyn. Sigh.

When we arrived, a nice lady did ask me to dance for one of the first songs and I had to endure feeling like Sasquatch next to her petit little thing.  She was exceedingly sweet, though, and I was grateful for helping me segway into a dancing mentality. I’m new to this whole dancing without caring thing. And since mom was out of commission due to a back injury, I was on my own.

Afterwards, I sat down and we eagerly waited to be asked for the next song. We waited. And waited. Ogled at pretty dresses… and waited.

Song number two came on, so I used this as an opportunity to get a snapshot because there would be like absolutely no time to do so when I dance the rest of the night away. Poor mom will be just so lonely having no one to talk to.

Song numbers three through six: Mom started to get worried. I was becoming convinced that the wallpaper behind me was also green with pink roses and therefore no one could find me even if they wanted to. So I stood up and paced for awhile until the song ended.

Song number seven: Mom is now despondent and almost irreconcilable.

I’d have given my right leg for someone to ask me. And I probably would’ve danced better without it, too. Maybe not as happily, but definitely with more rhythm. Instead, I sat gloomily feeling more like Mary Bennett than Elizabeth.

You know who Mary is.

Take a guess.

Looking back, why didn’t I ask anyone? If I’d had a glass of champagne in my hand, then game on.

But (in case you’ve forgotten) I’m a functioning INTROVERT, people. No way am I going over to strangers under flourescent lighting and lead them to the dance floor. If I had been with someone more shy, then I would’ve mustered up the guts to do something.

Have you met my mom, though? She is decidedly unshy and tried to get every living creature in breeches and dresses that passed our way to dance with me. My god, you would’ve thought our family was on the brink of financial disaster and she needed me to throw myself at anyone in a cravat. Yet, still no luck.

So instead of acting as my dance pimp, she suggested I improve my countenance. “You know, people are more likely to ask you if you’re smiling, Carolyn.”

Okay, so like this?

“No,” she said… “Try to add a touch of desperation to your smile. Dance partners love that.”

And what d’ya know. Within two seconds of my face exploding from sheer force of countenance, a guy came over and lamented that I wasn’t dancing.


He really acted the part too, which I appreciated. All gracefulness and toe-pointing.; I was taken aback by his unabashedness on the regency dance floor.

The night quickly ended, though, before I could come out of  my shell. But I was happy with the dances that I was able to experience.

One note of worthy, however. A lady came up and asked my age. She thought I was 19. Let me repeat that, Nuh-ineteen. That’s for all my fellow gray-haired friends, you know which nursing home you are.

As for the dancing, this Saturday night is another contra night and I’m looking forward to sweating dancing in the rounds I missed out on at the Ball.

However, this time I won’t wear white. Okay, yes I will. Maybe it will ensure me a dance partner.

Wanna read Part 2 of our adventure? Click here!

13 comments on “Jane Austen Festival, Part One

  1. carla says:

    You look beautiful. Must’ve brought out the sponge rollers;)

  2. Rochelle says:

    This was lovely. You looked lovely. Well done!

  3. Unc says:

    OMG …you look like you popped out of a book, can’t stop those dancin’feet!! I thought you didn’t look a day over 18 ….aren’t you glad you all went, you looked great!

  4. Kristy says:

    Holy eff, Carrie! I cackled at work seeing that picture of your countenance + desperation photo. You look like a muppet. Oh man. I’m dying. Hilarious. Well done. We’ll miss you in the future, and by that I mean this weekend in Vegas! Keep having a great time there! You do look straight out of the books…the fraggle books! hahahaha. No, the actual books. Like Kiera skinny-buns english girl from the movie. I mean books.

  5. Julie Rockhold says:

    You looked great! You are hilarious! I wish I would have met you that weekend! My husband cut the silhouettes. I have tons of photos on facebook, check them out! Julie Rockhold

  6. Dessie says:

    OMG … you look great in period dress!! Sounds like you guys had a blast!! Curious … what kind of tea was served at tea time? Hugs!

  7. Deanna says:

    I was on the opposite side of the room from where you sat at the ball! I daresay, if you stayed til the end, you saw my cohorts and I engaged in a ridiculously silly photo session! I think you look just 18 or so in your Regency garb as well! You look lovely! I enjoyed watching Mr. Fancy-toes! He was brilliant! Very jealous you were able to dance with him! Lol Do look me up on FB, if you will. I’ve several pics from Saturday!

  8. Annie says:

    This made my day. I had no idea such events existed, I am forever jealous of your adventures. You look amazing & are certainly no Mary Bennett! I only hope Pearl & I can share such times together, dear Lord let her be a reader! Wish we lived closer lady, so much Salinger to be discussed. I look forward to whatever comes next in your journey! Hilarious & amazing, keep it up.

  9. Jessica says:

    You are so entertaining!

  10. […] Wow, I haven’t felt this sexy since dressing up as a girl from the 18th century. […]

  11. Lip Balm « says:

    […] remember this. From my trip to Kentucky Jane Austen festival. If you want a reason to not sleep, check it out. I should not be allowed out in an empire waist […]

  12. Jesyka says:

    Well, obviously I haven’t been delving into this blog’s depths. Because there be treasure.

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