Last night, I went out for tango, and something beautiful happened.
First of all, you need to understand that I don’t dance as much as I used to.
Not because I don’t like it.
My focus is to play with my son when I am not working, and he is too young to join me on a night milonga.
But yesterday I felt this need to dance.
I was working all day long listening to tango music in parallel, and both my body and my mind was telling me it’s time.
I kissed my son goodnight and went out.
As usual, I didn’t dance right away.
I gave myself time to absorb the music and the environment.
When I danced my first tanda, I was not in the mood for the usual conversation: Where do you come from?, How many days are you staying here?
I simply asked, What do you like most about tango?”
She took a while to respond.
Who asks this kind of question, right?
“Connection”, she said.
We danced the next song.
“You didn’t ask me, ‘Connection with whom?’” she said at the end.
So I asked her
“With myself,” she said,
“It is my active meditation.”
“Why do you need it?”
“It helps me grow.”
Now I was intrigued.
What if I kept doing that all night long?
What would I discover?
When I asked the next woman I danced with what she liked most about tango, she simply said, “I love to meet complete strangers from anywhere in the world and know that I have a language to communicate with them.”
Beautiful, I thought.
I received many answers that night.
“Because tango shakes my soul,” another one told me.
And then, it happened– “To stay alive,” one said.
This led to one of the deepest, most emotional tandas of my life.
Because I saw the soul of that person and the healing power of tango.
If you want to improve in tango, focus on using your dance to heal and give joy.
When you set this intention, all answers become easier.
I watched an old tanguera sitting, almost all night long.
A man seemed to look at her, so she smiled, ready to dance.
He walked closer to her, and then continued walking to dance with a woman a few steps behind her.
The old lady, who was already on the move, grabbed a glass of water, to cover her misunderstanding.
I saw her face turn sad.
It was not her age that made me take the following step, nor pity.
She possessed a calmness that only people who have lived a full life hold.
It was the realization of the power of a simple embrace.
I approached her.
She looked at me, and then looked down again.
I kept my gaze.
She looked again, and then looked down one more time.
Then she looked a third time, full of disbelief.
I finally had time to smile back and move my head, pointing to the dance floor.
A huge smile appeared on her face.
You might ask how the tanda went, if we danced beautifully.
To this, I would say that it was a true joy and that you asked the wrong question.
We shared a moment as humans, no matter our age difference, ethnicity, or beliefs, and that’s what matters.
I left this tanda happier, and I hope she did the same.
What if we all danced to spread joy and to heal?
What would such a milonga look like?
That’s a milonga I wouldn’t miss for the world.
That same night, I saw people who were going through hard divorces smiling.
I danced with a brave soul that had just learned a few days before that the life that was growing inside her would not survive.
She was about to lose a person she loved without the chance to see or touch his/her hand.
She had no way to know when it would happen, just the certainty it would be in the imminent future.
She danced and let go.
We danced, but I was no longer dancing with her.
I danced with the life she carried; praying for healing, praying for a miracle.
I was hugging, and my hand was just a bit lower on her back.
I danced, trying to give a safe environment for that unborn life, saying my “Hello” as well as my “Goodbye.”
How many things happen before our eyes every day, that we don’t see?
That night, I saw people connecting with people, finding healing moments.
And I said to myself again:
What if we were all dancing to heal and be healed?
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Story posted by: Dimitris Bronowski
About the author: Social Dancer, Writer from Coimbra
Published: 13 Oct 2021 @ 15:48
Last modified: 14 Oct 2021 @ 11:03