As Father’s Day approaches, we don’t expect getting greetings cards from Walter, Joe, Ann, George, Nicole, David, Mario and a few other long forgotten tangosons and daughters whose names have faded down memory lane. These are people we gave birth to as tango dancers, teachers, promoters along with helping them build their fledgling communities since 1996. Today, from Anchorage to the Hudson Valley, across the Pacific Ocean to Honolulu, and across the country through Champaign-Urbana, Sarasota, Jacksonville, and Tallahassee, our tangosons and daughters are the trunks who have grown from the tango seeds we’ve been sowing since the days when the passion for tango really meant that. Until recent, we even had a special mention at the bottom of one those communities websites, where forever gratitude and appreciation for having started it all was wholeheartedly expressed with the exuberance of those who still have not lost their bearings. It is a fact of life that kids who never grow up renege of the experiences of the early years, denying the existence of those parental figures who took them by the hand and taught them how to walk without tripping, and how to skip around the potholes of tango life. They continue to be children in oversize bodies being bound by the shame that blinds them.
As the years went by we slowed down the itinerant nature of our lives, settled in the South, downsizing and investing time and money in a local community, only to see it wiped out by Katrina. Boo hoo, boo hoo… Well there are things that needed to be said while being alive, because we are seeing an alarming increase in the death announcements of people we know. Paraphrasing Ana Maria Rabatte’s poem IN LIFE, BROTHER, IN LIFE, let’s not wait for people to die to talk about our affection. Let’s do it while they’re still alive brothers and sisters. If you want to give a flower don’t wait until someone dies, send it today with love, while they’re still alive.
Anyway, when we were looking forward to sitting on the porch, sipping Malbecs, and watching the jazz funerals pass by on their way to the Lafayette cemetery nearby, we got the call to go out and help bring to life a new tango community. Right in the Emerald Coast, the Hamptons of the New Orleans well to do, the Floridians Redneck Riviera. Let me tell you, if feels good to be taking new steps all over again along with our newest tangosons and daughters… The planting of good intentions yields a harvest of kindness.
A memorable weekend along the Emerald Coast