Yes, you read that correctly. I took my first salsa class this week and I LOVED IT.

Just to be clear, we're talking about salsa dancing, not a class on how to make salsa. Although, I'd probably enjoy that class just as much.

A friend of mine used to be very active in the local salsa community, and when she told about her dancing experiences, I knew right away that I wanted to give it a try. I've wanted to learn how to dance since middle school, but I've just never really had the opportunity. The closest I've gotten is three years of high school show choir, which, surprisingly, turned out to be slightly helpful. La Cantina in Downtown Cedar Rapids hosts salsa dancing every Wednesday night, with lessons for beginners starting at approximately 8:30 p.m. The instructor Kyle went over some very basic steps with us, and by the end of the class, we all knew enough to join the social dance, which begins at 9:30.

If you would've told me about these classes a couple of years ago, I can almost guarantee you that I would've said, "absolutely not." I would have been too embarrassed to attempt it in a public setting, plus I had a real issue with touching people. I don't know why I've become much more ok with embarrassing myself (I kind of blame working in radio), but I can tell you that Jiu Jitsu is 100% the reason I'm able to interact physically with people, especially people I don't know. Since I started about a year and a half ago, I have this weird confidence I've never experienced before and it feels good. I've always been very self-conscious, so trying new things is never easy for me, but I can't tell you how much fun I've had and all the cool people I've met with these new hobbies.

So basically, the moral of the story is: TRY NEW THINGS. Even if they're scary. Even if you think you're going to suck. Even if you don't know anybody. You don't know what you could be missing out on if you don't try!

Oh, and if you're interested in the whole salsa thing, you can get more details on that HERE.