Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Tango Woman in Buenos Aires
Tango Woman in Buenos Aires says:
"I used to have a high pressure life. I had my own business as a systems integrator in California. I had a beautiful house full of beautiful things. I had a car, a truck, and everything else that goes with working 60 hour weeks.
In 1998 I started to learn to dance Argentine Tango. Who knew that learning a new dance would have such an impact on my life. In 2000 I made my first trip to Buenos Aires to dance tango. I fell in love with the city, the culture, and of course with how the Argentines danced tango in Argentina.
This was the first of 18 trips I made until I decided to move permanently to Buenos Aires. My life has completely changed. I live in a Spanish speaking world. In another culture. In 2004 I sold everything I owned to move to Buenos Aires, Argentina. I did what many people always dream about; I started a new life.
I live by renting two rooms in my apartment to people who come to dance tango. I teach tango with a partner. I live for each momement, and of course, for my tango.
I am not Argentine. I am an American. I live in Argentina. I have lived here for almost five years. I feel disconnected from American life, and in many ways from Americans. I feel much closer to Argentines, but I am not Argentine, and culturally we are very different. In most ways I have adapted. There are some things I cannot change about me. Those things can make it a challenge, at times, to live here.
Yesterday I had lunch with an Argentine male friend. He recently came back to Buenos Aires to live after being gone for 40 years. During the course of our lunch he said to me, “I am Argentine, but I haven't lived here for 40 years. I don’t feel like I really fit in here. Yet I am from here. I lived in the US 30 years, but I never felt like I fit in there either. I guess I am just weird.” I looked at him and said, “Entiendo, yo también.” (I understand, me too.)
It’s not easy to change your country. With all the times I had come here, it still was not the same as living here. I was a business analyst. I was used to planning everything down to the last detail. There are just some things that don’t go on a spreadsheet. Adapting to a new culture is one of them."