Yes, I have finally realised that if no one will invite you to dance at their event then you may as well hold your own. Seriously, though ... I am only kind of joking.
More importantly, it gives Christina and I a chance to do some fundraising for domestic violence charity Refuge. This all came about after Elisa Gamal's fantastic workshop in Croydon, when Christina and I got chatting on the train afterwards. Christina asked if I'd be interested in helping her sort out some kind of 'thing'. Since I had been filled with good intentions for ages, how could I say no?
We came to the conclusion that we should try and help Refuge pretty quickly: Christina pointed out that Christmas is particularly tough for underprivileged kids. This is a tacit acknowledgement that Christmas is a stressful time for most families, and if your relationship is a violent one then you're going to be more at risk than usual.
Refuge is also horribly underfunded. Their state support is now next to non-existent and voluntary donations don't fill the gap. In 2009, The Donkey Sanctuary got £20 million in charitable gifts. Refuge got less than £2 million. Donkeys are really lovely and all, but ...
On a happier note, the hafla itself is coming together nicely. We were sorry when Roxana had to bow out because of family commitments, but are delighted that the delightful Sofeya (a fellow former student of Razia's) and the splendid Maelle, winner of this year's Bellydance Trophies, will be performing. And, erm, it looks like Christina and I will be too.
So we have stars, we have a date, we have a venue, we have a Facebook page, we have a Just Giving page, and -- thanks to the fact that I am married to the Greatest Bloke EverTM -- a really natty logo and flyer, as you see. We even have a gift basket that will be given away on the night at random. All that's left is to get some buzz going. Which is where you come in. Come one, come all and bring your friends etc.
Apologies for the Facebook linkage, but to stay up-to-date with goings on and enjoy photos of the event afterwards, you can 'like' the Thamesis Facebook page (where you can also find out what the hell 'Thamesis' means). For those of you in London on 6 December, this will also be an opportunity for us to meet if we haven't already!