When I dance with Roberto or Germain or Cédric, or anyone who is willing, I give everything I can. I go to the very edge of the limits of my body and my psychology. I also open my heart (inadvisable).

This weekend, rather unexpectedly, I arrived to Southern France in time for the beautiful Toulouse Neo Tango Festival. But I didn’t go. I spent the entire weekend in angst.

Of course I felt a sweet yearning to dance, a hope of meeting new partners, a warm reaching to meet friends so long separated.

But would I accept the right invitations if I felt cautious of everyone? Would I be able to relax my body, to trust and enjoy while also maintaining vigilance?

As the weekend ticked past, I reminded myself of the faces of those who awaited me. I put my shoes by the door. I made plans. I realized how lonely it has been. I touched the fact that our tango feels like a lost world. It shimmers in the distance of time, becomes mythical. Atlantis.

Then I realized there was something more. Long before the Distance separated us, I was already so often disappointed. The offer at hand is not to risk the current status of scientific and policy guesswork in order to get some of this tango thing that delights me. The offer is to take that risk for something that often disappoints. The unsatisfying “charity” dance is now an entirely different sort of thing – no longer just a gift, a risk. Waiting for an invitation and all of the other disappointments and pains of tango have also gotten more expensive, right along with the pleasures.

Every hour, I looked in my heart for the desire to pay the price. And I didn’t find it.



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