I look back at my days as a full-time dance student with affection and nostalgia. Being in the studio was physically gruelling, and at times emotionally shattering, but the hard times were off-set by the amazing people I shared my journey with, and some of the interesting memories we made along the way.
One of my all-time favourite things were birthday parties. A dancer’s physique is so important, and of course that goes hand-in-hand with diet. Not only do they need to eat to maintain a slim figure, but they are above all else elite athletes, and ceiling the body properly is crucial. That meant no cake on birthdays. No lollies, no chips, no soft drink or finger food. Instead, we had watermelons.
My teacher would buy a whole watermelon, and we’d stick candles in it so it looked like a giant green hedgehog. Once it was cut, we’d all stand leaning out over the grass so that the juice wouldn’t get on our leotards.
I know that a lot of the girls I danced with can no longer stand to eat watermelon as they associate it with being deprived of their normal eating habits, but truth be told, I can’t get enough of the stuff. I associate it fun times and laughter, with summer and days at the beach. I love the taste and the juice running down my chin, and I love the colour of watermelon.
When I saw this dress, I was instantly transported back to my dancing days and reminded of the birthday parties. It’s that perfect shade of pink that isn’t quite salmon or coral. It’s vibrant and fun and the perfect dress to wear during summer.