It Takes 3 Steps to Tango

Last night I had my first Tango lesson! A local dance school was having free lessons in a town square in San Jose, so I headed into town ready for a good night of dancing. I had never Tangoed before, so it’s a good thing everybody else there was also a beginner.

  1. The first exercise we did was to make everyone feel more comfortable being there. For about two minutes, we had to walk around saying “hola” and hugging random strangers. I hugged everyone from young hippies to old, fragile grandmas (it’s amazing how diverse a class can be when it’s free). A little bizarre, I know, but it was actually refreshing and made everyone happier and eager to start learning.
  2. The second exercise was between partners. Your partner put one hand on your chest and one on your back and walked you around while you had your eyes shut. I went with my friend Gabby, and I can honestly say we bonded a lot during that exercise. It’s frightening to let someone who you don’t know all that well lead you around while you’re essentially blind!
  3. Last, we finally started dancing. We only learned a simple five steps consisting of back, side, front, front, side, but after a few songs of deep concentration and staring at our feet, we finally got the hang of it. The free class is once a month so by the end of my time here, I’m sure I’ll be dancing like a pro. Until then, I’ll just be inspired to listen to some Tango music and stream a few episodes of Dancing With the Stars.

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