Sunday, July 15, 2012

Tango Nights: Salon Canning

I've known Oksana since my university days. I can still hear her radiant scream when I walked for my diploma on graduation day. You know that dreaded stage walk – when all of a sudden everyone has their own cheering section, equipped with noisemakers, pots and pans and elephants. Well, I had crickets and Oksana. Anyways, many years have passed and we lost touch. And then like a kismet surprise, a kiss-the-ground-miracle we meet up in Buenos Aires! We toast champagne over dinner followed by a milonga (one of the oldest in Buenos Aires, Salon Canning) – a gathering where you can dance and watch, the kumasutra of all dances – tango.

Nothing's changed with the girl. She still glows. Still sweet as a pavlova topped with summer strawberries (and her lovely bf Adrian-man too). What I admire most of all about her is – not only is she a beautiful soul – full of passion, humor and kindness, but out of the university bunch (myself included), she was the one who brazenly followed her dreams. Oksana is an amazing artist AND she dances tango! (I have so much respect.)

As a milonga virgin, I am spellbound. The sheer electricity on the dance floor. The charge of emotions. Women on men. Men on women. Eyes closed. Body heat colliding. Intimate beating breath. Tension, intent, tenderness. The battle to be seen. The battle to express or control. The placement of hand. Desire with a dusting of seduction. Past, present and future. All gathered at the flick of a turn or in the folds of an embrace.

There are no coordinated moves in tango, as we learn from Adrian. There are steps. You listen to the music, your bodies meet, and you move.  Every time you dance, it’s a different movement, a different take - based on the music, the partner, and the interpretation. Kind of like life.

Realization: We are spectators, longing to dance. We long to dance to the rhythm of our music.

Here's to old friends and to dancing to our music eyes closed.


ps pictures really don’t do it justice...


2am @ Salon Canning

Oksana and Adrian's tango foot steps...

A pause to change partners...

Lots of onlookers and old timers too

Oksana and Adrian

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