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Sunday, 26 May 2013

Lust in the milonga

In between the songs in a tanda, Pat’s partner said, ‘Your husband must need glasses, letting you go out dancing on your own’, which simply brought a bemused smile to Pat’s face.  Of course, it was simply a piropo, which women can expect to hear often from local men in the milongas of Buenos Aires.

But this isn’t the lust I’m talking about, nor the more pointed invitation for ‘un cafecito’ after the milonga, that foreign women may receive.  

I watch the women dance, and focus on one, as I notice her pivots, the contact her feet have with the floor, her embrace, the way she responds with elegance to her partner’s leads, the occasional under-stated decorations that enhance rather than interfere with the connection, the one-ness she creates with her partner.  My desire kicks in: “I must dance with her!”  So begins the chase.  If she has seen me dance, then hopefully I’ve measured up.  But now, the cabeceo is all I have left to convince her to take a chance.

Then there’s the lust that hits immediately, when the tanda begins with Fumando espero (Di Sarli/Pomar), La abandone y no sabia (Tanturi/Campus), or Lo pasao paso (Di Sarli/Rufino), and to these I feel that I must dance – they are tangazos!  Now there’s a desperate search to see whether one of my regular partners, who I know will dance this well, is available.  And again, I must put my trust in the cabeceo at a distance, hoping that she feels the same.

The tanda finishes, and the lust is sated.  I can return to my seat, and for a while, savour the 12 minutes that my partner and the music have given me.  The feelings of delight and satisfaction will last all night.

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