I’ve been dancing for 10 years now – but I can still remember the thrill of discovery as I read my journal entries on those fateful first days. Like many others, I started with Salsa, the “gateway drug” and quickly moved onto “the hard stuff”.
“She tried to beg off and stay home on the night of Salsa classes, but I would be damned if I would let her come all the way to Mexico and not Salsa!” She obliged but dragged her feet all the way.
It would be safe to say that I had reluctance at first but later realized that it is because typically, I choose to do things that I excel in. It was a lesson in humility. Eventually, I began having a great time and my teacher graduated me to “intermediate” status. Not bad for 6 weeks of stepping on the feet of classmates! I’ve now promised myself to try all kinds of new things that I do not excel in.
One night after salsa class I overheard our dance teacher say that he would be meeting his wife for Tango. “Tango!?” I just about splurted out the Margarita I was drinking on anyone within 3 feet of me. I asked if I could come along, but he just laughed and said, “yeah, right, when you have learned Salsa, we can talk about Tango”. ” It’s much more difficult”. “Okay”, I conceded, and because I’m not above groveling, added; “but can I just come and watch?”
We walked down the street and around the corner to a beautiful restaurant with an indoor/outdoor atmosphere, with huge columns and iron lanterns where people were already dancing to the live orchestra. Well, I use that term generously, it’s really an accordion player, stand up bass and guitarist, but it sounds wonderful to me.
After a moment of gawking, I spot someone I know dancing! A woman who I had met at a theater performance just a week ago. I worked up my courage to approach her, I want to ask her where she learned to dance, and how I can arrange to take lessons. She and her partner are clearly the most skilled dancers in the room and if I am going to learn, I want to learn from the best. It turns out that she and her husband had learned to dance in Argentina, but that they teach in San Miguel. I am in luck! I make an appointment and spend the rest of the evening with a dumbstruck look on my face as I watch the dancers make marvelous patterns in time with the music.
I am loving my tango lessons; I have had four now and am able to “follow” my partner/teacher in simple patterns. He and his wife say that I am learning swiftly, which is encouraging since with Salsa I felt like a complete clod. To be truthful, I think it was simply that I did not really care for what I perceived to be “obnoxious” music, but it could also be that the classroom was tiny and crowded. Who knows, who cares, a small space only adds to the intensity of tango!
Event Organiser, Social Dancer from Sedona in USA