Learning to Tango (and why I need to stay away from impulse group buying)

A couple of months ago there was an offer on group buying site Jump On It for six tango lessons for the price of two. With a little encouraging push from my colleague Jaselyn we both jumped. We were in a ‘I want to do everything’ mood, more than usual, and decided we needed to add a little latin action to the mix. As if learning to speak Spanish wasn’t enough!

Jaselyn and I are the kinds of people who are short of things to do. She’s training for a triathlon and running her own PR business and those of you who know me know I am good at filling my time, MMA being my most recent addition to the schedule. But we thought it would be a laugh and a bargain. It has delivered on both.

We downed some Japanese at Shoubu (see where I checked in on Foursquare) on Smith St in Collingwood, deliberately chosen for its location across the road from Viva for our tango lesson; and we’re going through a Japanese food phase at the moment too.

Jaselyn has a dancing background. I tried and went back to gymnastics. The first lesson was bound to be a laugh. I prayed they had a sense of humour. We also started praying for some hot men to dance with and immediately knew this would not happen, instead, we pondered the greasy possibilities waiting to take us in their arms. Awesome.

But the people were lovely, if a little too humourless for my liking, and the first man I partnered with was lovely and patient. They took us briefly through the basic steps and then we partnered and went round in tango, swapped partners and kept going. Then we were taught a variation of the step to add on to the basic step and around we went again.

By this stage I’d stepped on feet, walked into the wall and cracked up more times that the studio instructors cared to imagine I’m sure. Jaselyn was the same. Everyone else was super serious. We were laughing, confused and wished for more instruction.

But we did laugh. And we’ve committed to another five session which I’m sure the studio is thrilled about. I felt like one of those kids trying my hardest but failing in a comedic fashion so it made us look like the naughty kids because we were laughing so hard.

It’s a small, charming studio and the people were nice but I wouldn’t rate my beginner experience as one of the best I’ve had. They didn’t even ask if we’d tried tango before. I was also spewing that they suggested heels to ‘feel more authentic’…they weren’t even wearing heels!

Next week is a public holiday here in Melbourne so it will be two weeks before our next session…should give them long enough to recover from our attendance. There have also been many other appealing group buying offers but I’ve managed to control myself … for now.



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