There are few things more romantic than dancing the tango at the Llao Llao Resort in Argentina.
I know this because last week I did …with my mother and our two new friends Howard and Norton, retired brothers in-law from Bronxville, New York.
I may have pictured a taller conquistador when I imagined my first tango partner, but I could not have chosen a more charming one. Norton and I rocked that eight-step bad boy, Argentina’s national dance, though Norton diplomatically avoided any lifts or dips.
Argentina oozes tango music, especially in Buenos Aires. The entire not coincidentally fit nation moves in the syncopated rhythm of tango and jazz. I stood at the corner of 9 de Julio Avenue, the widest street in the world, and watched Argentines move briskly down the sidewalk in a collective eight beat pace. Graceful dancers appear in unlikely corners throughout the country, especially in the brightly colored neighborhood of La Boca, Buenos Aires. Look there in the doorway of that pizzeria, or over there next to the hostess stand of that elegant restaurant.
My mom caught the tango fever and happily jumped into the arms of Howard, her original partner, and then the Llao Llao dance instructor whose name escapes me, and then the principal dancer at Esquina Carlos Gardel, and then the guy on the street corner with the sly grin.
I had to keep an eye on her lest she slip away with a roving band of tango dancers headed back to Bariloche.
I packed up my eight-step tango skill set along with the Mate I sipped and the dulce de leche that I so enjoyed during my stay in Argentina. I’m bringing them all home so on cold winter nights I can pull them out and remember the sweet days I spent in beautiful South America. 1-2-3-4-5 hold 6-7-8.