During my first Spanish summer holidays, back in the Dark Ages, my mother was determined that my little sister and I would learn Spanish, and she implemented a daily learning regime. I must have been a good little girl, because I dutifully listened to the LP record, learned the vocabulary and the verbs, and put it all into practice playing with the local children. Over the years my Spanish progressed, and it certainly has been useful.
It started to become even more useful when, as teenagers, my sister and I noticed the local handsome Spanish boys. I developed super-human Spanish flirting skills, which were used to get dates and lifts home from the local discotheques. For a small town, there was quite a choice of night spots in Moraira. They were called HeHo, Don Pipo, and the best and biggest of all, the one with a swimming pool and two dance floors, Aquarius. The downside was that it was a good six kilometres from our house and unless we managed to snag a date, we had to walk.
During the seventies, Saturday Night Fever, Michael Jackson and Earth, Wind and Fire were at the top of the charts, and we were all burning up the dance floor. We would spend our days on the beach, getting the darkest possible tan by slathering on tons of oil and bergamot, and then come home to practice our dance moves. We thought we were so cool, although we must have driven our parents mad playing the same tracks over and over. My parents were very good to us and used to allow us to bring crowds of friends on holiday with us, so it was always a lot of fun outside on the terrace.
After meeting everyone at the dodgems in town, at eleven o’clock, off we would go to Aquarius. Of course, we didn’t have much money, but you got a free drink with your entrance ticket and there were plenty of boys to chat us up, dance with us, and buy us drinks. However, we weren’t there for the booze, we were there for the ‘boogie’! No wonder I had such a good figure in those days. I could dance my head off for hours. The DJ would play a set of fast tracks to get everyone on the floor, so that we would all be sweaty and thirsty and buy drinks. Then, suddenly, he would put a slow song on. As soon as something soppy came on, the boys would move in and try to get a slow dance, holding you too close, singing in horrible broken English in your ear and attempting to get a kiss. It was a pain in the neck then, but what I wouldn’t do to fly back in time and just spend one night reliving the excitement of the disco days. It has to be twenty years since someone tried to pick me up in a nightclub, and I don’t think it will ever happen again, unless I go to a nightclub for old fogies.
Sometimes, when I am in town I catch sight of some of the ‘boys’ who used to chase us around the dance floors. It is terrible! They are now almost pensioners and look like wizened old granddads! I am older too, but I’m sure I haven’t deteriorated that much! Thank goodness none of them managed to catch me… or I might have ended up marrying one of them!