The Dab-erena

Five months on board and I still can’t whip and nae nae. I can “dab” though so I still have a job. If you don’t know what “dabbing” is, you are obviously over the age of 19 and not cool. All the cool kids are doing it. Please google it. It’s not as dodgey or as dangerous as it sounds. (Although, if Dr. Oz can do a feature on “the triangle of death” explaining why you should never squeeze a pimple on your nose, “the dangers of dabbing” is probably an upcoming episode.) 

The sixties had the twist, the seventies had the YMCA, I’m not sure what the 80s had but they had a lot of weird stuff, the 90s had the Macarena, the 2000s had the Cha Cha Slide and now the 2010s have this? It’s basically a dance move that looks like you’re sneezing into your elbow. Anyone with Tourrete’s could do it.

Once you’ve googled it, ask yourself: “What the eff?” Seriously, how is this a thing? How? How? Why? And then say it with me: “Kids today!” If it’s not the dumbest thing on the internet (and there are A LOT of dumb things on the internet) please post whatever is, in the comment section below. 

At the moment, the kids are all on summer vacation and there tend to be more teens at the parties than adults. There’s one party where we play music through the decades starting from the 60s and moving our way up to current music. The first hour is really awkward. Everybody just stands around the edges with their arms folded brooding with teen angst while a handful of their grandparents test out their new hips reliving their glory days. 

Our itinerary recently changed and instead of doing seven day runs we started doing eight and six-day runs. On the eight day runs we had to add another theme night so we went with a 90s party. We don't have proper costumes for this one so the Cruise Staff have to improvise. I am now getting paid to dress up as Britney Spears every other week! How many people can put that on their resumes? At these parties, I go around asking kids if they’ve ever heard whatever song is playing at the time. The answer is often ‘no’ and just makes me feel old even though I’m dressed like a school girl. If you’re still a teenager today you would have been born in 1997 or after, which means Backstreets Back was released the year of your birth or before, as was Aqua’s Barbie Girl and, I struggle with this one, Wannabe from the Spice Girls happened before you were born - that song’s 20 years old! Basically, if you remember the Macarena (from way back in 1993) you’re over the hill. This is really happening. I think I need to go lie down. 

None of this has stopped me from doing the Macarena (with very serious facial expressions - as one should) as my intro / signature move this whole contract, but with these kids, it has been falling a bit flat. A few weeks ago, after doing the Macarena twice as my intro with no reaction, I decided to mix it up and I threw in a dab at the end. I took a 90s classic and put a modern day spin on it and just like Pokemon Go, it worked! The kids went nuts (sort of). In that moment I knew a dance revolution had begun. I call it “The Dab-arena”. I toyed with the idea of calling it “The Macarenab” because the dab comes at the end but that sounds like there are abs involved. Abs are not a requirement for the Dab-arena.

If you would like to get into this dance craze before it explodes - as I’m sure it will (…along with the comeback of keytars* - Yes, I know they're from the 80s, shut-up) [*Note to self: Delete this in a few months along with the other comment I made in a previous blog about Keytars if Keytars don’t make a comeback.] (And I’m sorry for telling you to shut-up)) - I will explain how to do the Dab-arena: Basically, you do the Macarena and then at the end on count 16 or something you dab. (Don’t tell anyone but I can’t count out dance steps and yet I teach dance classes every single week. Counting out dance moves is to me what left-hand turns are to Zoolander. It’s my secret achilles heal. Please can we keep this between us?) When you would normally jump to face a new direction you dab, okay? Then if you still want to keep it a “four wall dance” (that’s what we in the biz call it) you can still step to face a new direction at the start of the next routine (on what I’m pretty sure is count one). 

Fun tip: You don't have to do it to the Macarena. Any song with 8 counts works …which is pretty much any song. - I think.

Highschool musicalling in the Bahamas

Dabbing in the Bahamas

Extreme underwater dabbing in the Bahamas

In other news:

Our Itinerary changed
For the month of August, our ship started doing eight and six-day runs. I got to go back to St. Maarten (both the Dutch and the French sides) - That’s a lot of Europe-but-not-Europe for one day. I also went to Roatan, Honduras with my new snorkel which was nice. Then we went to one of my favourite places on the planet: Cozumel, Mexico. I decided to be the ultimate crew member cliche and spent my time off in port going to Mega (a Mexican supermarket) and The No Name Bar, which is pretty much what crew members do in Cozumel. I found my name badge (put up by a friend on my last contract because I wasn't allowed off the ship) and enjoyed one of the happiest places on Earth. 

Rodrigo in Roatan, Honduras

Rodrigo in Cozumel, Mexico

We got diverted
Yes, we were supposed to go to Belize but Hurricane Earl decided to go there too and schedule his arrival on the same day. So we changed itineraries and went to Nassau instead. Some people were disappointed but they really shouldn’t have been. Belize is scary. 

I’m almost done
Yes, this is my last cruise and in 8 days I’ll be headed home to South Africa. People keep asking me about my future plans. Well, I’m going to a wedding and I’m also hoping to download a Tamagotchi app. The same kids who have never heard of Scatman John also have no idea what a Tamagotchi is …or was. Those things were awesome, okay? They had calculator screens and three whole buttons and they were egg-shaped and I’m going to look after a virtual pet for a few weeks because that’s not long enough to have a real pet and who needs real life plans anyway, right? I also intend to sleep a lot, write a lot and drink a lot of decent tea with awesome people. 

25 cruises down, 1 to go 
Coherent thoughts I’m capable of at this level of exhaustion: 0.46




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Sharon Waugh

Sharon is a writer, cruise ship entertainment host and freelance unicorn wrangler. She is currently taking a break from her seafaring adventures to explore some more landlocked locations from her homebase in Johannesburg, South Africa. She likes to photograph a plastic lawn flamingo 'Rodrigo' on her travels because it seemed like a good idea ten years ago and 53 countries later, it’s probably too late to turn back now.

 Sharon greatly dislikes reading 'travel blogs' by people who are just rephrasing press releases or composing lists like '15 ways to travel the world for cheap', specifically formulated for SEO, with absolutely no evidence that the writers have ever left their bedrooms. (This is not one of those blogs.) Sharon also dislikes bigotry and referring to herself in first person, apparently.

To find out more about Sharon and Rodrigo’s travel aspirations read this.

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