Christiena Bluett, 71, Erskine, WA
Every year there’s a variety show in my village. Not shy, I love to get involved. This year I decided to pole dance!
I’d never done it before. In fact, I was 70 with 12 grandchildren. But I’d been going to the gym three times a week for 30 years.
This year I decided to pole dance!
During my first lesson at Fitzy’s Pole n Tone, I told the trainer Kellie my plan. ‘I want my performance to be funny,’ I said. ‘I’m going to dress as an elderly lady and hobble across the stage to a bus stop. Then I’ll shock everyone and spin around the pole.’ She loved the idea!
‘Okay, let’s see what you can do,’ Kellie said.
As I lifted my body up on the pole with ease, she laughed.
‘I wasn’t expecting that,’ she clapped, amazed.
At my second lesson, I impressed her even more. ‘You might as well do this properly!’ she said. So Kellie and a choreographer created a whole routine. I bought a headscarf and a dress in an op shop. Then I cut it down the middle and sealed it with velcro so I could rip it off quickly – in a bit of a striptease! I found a leopard print corset to wear underneath. The day before the show in May this year, I had my first ever spray tan at age 71!
As Frank Sinatra’s My Way began to play, I ambled in with a walking frame and rested my head wearily against the bus stop. Suddenly, the lights flashed and the music changed to Christina Aguilera singing Lady Marmalade. The audience gasped as I whipped off my dress and put on a feather headband. I felt so sexy!
Even better, I got a standing ovation. ‘That was brilliant!’ Kellie cried afterwards.
I still train with her for fun and strength. But I don’t think I’ll do another show. Being a granny and an exotic dancer are poles apart!
Originally published in that's life! Issue 28, 2016.