Spirit is Ageless!!
That’s what I thought of when I witnessed Ms. Betty Jo dancing at Gruene Hall. She would step right up in front of the band and dance like everyone was watching. That’s because they were! A lot of us couldn’t help but jump right in there with her, although everyone knew who the real star was. The real star was 80 something years old, with white hair, a big smile and some sweet moves. Ok maybe 3 moves.. but holy moly, she had more energy than most of us, right?
When I heard the sad news that she had passed recently, I searched for the photo that our friend Robbyn took of Betty Jo and I dancing on January 1st, 2020. The beaming smiles, the lightness of the crowd, the joy of the band… all palpable on that first day of the new year. None of us knew what was ahead.. and for that moment, it was as if the universe was yelling at us to PAY ATTENTION. PAY ATTENTION to the lady dancing. Look at her pure love of music, movement and spirit!! PAY ATTENTION to JOY. PAY ATTENTION to your neighbor whom you are sitting so close to and laughing and sharing this most important time together. Because in exactly 2 months and 13 days, the world is going to shut down. No dancing at Gruene. No dancing anywhere, except your living room.
We return to Gruene Hall today with great relief …but also accompanied by extreme caution. Do we dance together? Do we hug one another? Sit close to one another?
Oh how I will miss not seeing Ms. Betty Jo today. I will miss dancing with her, giving her my scarf and watching her sneak a beer or two. Gruene Hall was generous to Betty… as was all of New Braunfels. Her spirit was a welcome reprieve after a long year. Oh how we could use her sweet moves now.
Dance in Peace, Betty Jo.