This was a minor event by most standards, but very memorable and meaningful to me. It was my first time at Pinewoods, AD&M 1983. In fact, it was my first time at any dance camp or weekend. I had heard all the superlatives about Pinewoods, and I was intimidated, and alone, but for a wide variety of reasons, I was there, all the way from Charleston, SC.

Wandering and exploring, I began hearing music in the distance. Excited, I sought and found the music. It was Kate (aka Peter at that time) and Ruthie Dornfeld at C# Minor, playing piano & fiddle. This was the first time I realized (and have said many times) that a good piano & fiddle are all you need for great dance music!

I was overwhelmed: super music, in the middle of the woods, in the middle of nowhere, a thousand miles from home! Shyly, I quietly sat down as far from them as I could, to unobtrusively listen. At the end of the second or third tune, Peter/Kate turned to face Ruthie, saw me in the distance, and gave me a huge grin. When he said "Hey there, come on over," I immediately surrendered my shyness. They continued playing and we talked. His open, warm reception made me feel welcome and at home.

This overwhelming week changed my life: it was the beginning of a long transformation from being a shy introvert to my becoming a competent, confident dancer and a successful, good citizen. Kate, you didn't do it alone, but you and others have shown me the way. One never knows how much difference a small kindness can make!

In spite of infrequent subsequent encounters, I have admired Kate greatly ever since. I remain a friend, and I wish her a long and happy life! Congratulations! I am honored to know you!

     
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