By now you may be wondering: what do Dave and Natasha do when they're not working, studying, or taking trips across the Praries? Well, we've gotten into a number of activities here in Edmonton, from folk dancing to fiddling. Curious? Read on!
Before setting out for Edmonton, Natasha retrieved her violin from a friend with the intention of taking lessons once we arrived. Dave was also interested, as he had previously attempted (quite unsuccessfully) to teach himself to play. Luckily, we found a friendly teacher at a local music store, and we each spend half an hour every Saturday afternoon torturing this poor soul. On a more pleasant note, we've developed a routine on Saturday which -- in addition to the violin lessons -- includes a trip to the farmer's market and a stop at the local branch of the library, all of which are a short walk from our house.
Through a friend of Dave's, we met a couple who teach an Israeli folk dancing class. We have gone to a couple of the beginner classes, and both really enjoyed it. The dances we've been taught are easy enough to learn, and from watching the intermediate classes, we are certain that more challenging dances lie ahead!
Dave has also gotten involved at the Reform synagogue (Temple Beth Ora) on the Communications Committee. Specifically, he is helping out with their website (surprise!), and is also starting to take on other miscellaneous computer tasks. After several years of non-involvement at his synagogue in Waterloo, he's happy to be contributing to the congregation here in Edmonton. Natasha has been attending here as well, and she is taking an Introduction to Judaism course to learn more about Dave's faith.
We also have attended First Mennonite Church in Edmonton a few times, although aren't as regular there as we are at Temple Beth Ora.
Natasha, meanwhile, is taking a beginner ballet class at the U of A on Monday evenings. She has wanted to take ballet for a number of years, and is really happy to be able to follow through on that interest. She enjoys the barre work, especially balancing on her toes (but she's not doing en pointe yet) and jumping, but has a hard time maintaining her balance on the floor work -- Dave is just impressed that she can stay on her toes for such a long time!
Dave is fighting the sedentary tendencies of student life by playing squash and jogging at the U of A track a few times a week.