Peronal Style: Tango in the Park
One winter, many years ago, I danced Argentine tango on the well-worn wooden floor of Ann Arbor’s old grange.
“You are an . . . experienced . . . dancer?” leads would sometimes ask me, a giant question mark in their voices.
I was certainly experienced at my dance of choice, the lindy hop, but my few lessons in Argentine-style tango left me at only the most basic functioning stage of that particular dance. Besides which, I had/have a natural bounce in my step that, while being an asset to lindy hop, is a detriment when dancing the languorous, drawn-out steps of tango. But I could follow the moves of any partner dance — years of lindy hop had granted me that ability — hence, the tango leads’ confusion.
“I want to live in Argentina,” I would sometimes say as part of my answer, “and study the tango there.”
And honestly, for years, this idea has nestled in the back of my head. To learn the tango in Argentina, the capital “R” Romance of it! I didn’t have any exact plan of what I was going to do after I backpacked Asia and Europe, but one of the many possibilities that I considered was getting a new job, saving some more money, and then temporarily relocating to Buenos Aires. For the tango. For the experience. For the chance to see South America.
Australia? Australia was never on my radar. It was, I thought, too expensive, the sites were too spread out, and the middle, excepting Uluru, seemed completely empty.
And yet here I am in Australia.
And on Saturday night, Liam and I took our Sweet Baby to an outdoor tango concert performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, playing the music of Astor Piazzolla, Joaquin Rodrigo, Gershwin, and others.
I didn’t tango. The few steps I’d once learned, I’d lost years ago. But I stood on a hill and watched the musicians and the halo of light that surrounded them, and the light beyond that rose up and shimmered from the tall city buildings rising behind the band’s large half-shell. For a moment, I allowed myself to get swept away in the music and those old dreams. Then I walked back to that little patch of grass on which Liam was standing, holding a Sweet Baby who was asleep and happily nestled in his arms. Not for the first time, and I’m guessing not for the last, I asked myself without any regret, only wonderment: How did I get here?
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The Sidney Myer Music Bowl takes place beside the Royal Botanical Gardens in Melbourne, so we took a few photos in the park before going to the concert, and while it was still light, obviously. And since this post actually started out about style (it’s been a long journey in more ways than one, eh?), here they are.
My Outfit Details
Dress: “In a Twinkling Dress,” Maeve Anthropologie (via Ebay)
Hat: Eugenia Kim
Hair Ribbon: H&M
Belt: Kate Spade skinny bow belt, Italian leather (via Ebay — for $12!).
Earrings: 1928 Brand (via Kohls)
Necklace: The gold locket is vintage, circa 1910; inside is a photo of my Nana.
Bracelet: The white bracelet with rainbow-hued crystals is vintage, circa 1960s.
Onesie: Aussie Kids