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12: Dear Tango

26 Jun

DEAR TANGO

(picture by)

Dear Tango,

I had very high expectations about our relationship.

I thought we were going to be a great fit considering I fancy myself a decent dancer (I mean I danced ballet for 10 years and all) and I love to watch other people move to your steps (I’m riveted by it, actually. It’s so sexy!). For these reasons, I put you on my list for the year. But, like many of my past relationships, you were better for me in theory and the real thing was, well…not so good.

I was jazzed at my first lesson. I came equipped with a good attitude, my winning sense of humor and of course new tango shoes (I’ll take any  reason to buy new shoes!).  The first half of the lesson was a breeze and I thought I did pretty well. I was on my way to calling myself a “natural” born tango dancer.

But, then…it came time to incorporate the steps I learned into an actual dance with my partner and the shit hit the fan. 

It was then I learned that when actually dancing the tango, the woman never knows what step comes next. Instead, she has to wait for the man to lead her and I would just have to feel it. I WOULD JUST HAVE TO FEEL IT? What?! That’s bullshit! There isn’t a routine or something?!

Slowly, this began to eat away at me (and my controlling side) and I found the whole being “led” thing impossible to grasp.

I knew it was over for us then, but in true Kate fashion I decided to torture myself for a bit longer because, well, I hate to be a quitter- again reminding me of many of my past relationships. 

This went on until I simply couldn’t take it anymore- I decided to come clean with myself (and all of you) and admit that I was, indeed, not a fan of the tango. I will admit that I hated saying, it but once I said it, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my chest and then I kinda wanted to skip around and scream with delight…”I hate the tango!!!” How nice to allow myself the freedom to hate something! I have spent too many years pretending I like certain things, certain people and certain ideas because I don’t want to offend and/or disappoint. Life is too damn short to be filling my day with stuff that isn’t enjoyable, stimulating and worth it to me. So what that I thought I would like it…I don’t. What’s the big deal if I don’t like something?? I like lots and lots of other things!

So thanks tango for teaching me that very valuable lesson before I turn thirty.

And I want you to know that I still like to watch other people dance you.

Respectfully,

Kate

A trip down memory lane…post 123

“Oh geez, did I pick a fun new tango class to attend (please adjust your sarcasm radar). I’m not really sure what to think about my new situation. I guess it wasn’t a horrible way to spend an hour and a half of one’s life…I mean how often does one get to dance a very sexy, close and personal dance with a very sweaty elderly man named George?

As we all know by now, the tango and I have issues. We don’t mesh as well as I thought we would. It wasn’t that I hated the tango after my first few private lessons but I wouldn’t say I was totally in love with it either. It’s very very very very very very very hard for me to be stop thinking long enough to enjoy being led by the man. I still don’t understand how the woman is supposed to know where to move her feet without a set sequence. I was told by my last instructor that closing my eyes might help me feel the movements more. I tried it and all it helped me with was tripping over my feet at a greater rate. I almost thought about scrapping the tango completely for the year. Maggi even pointed out that the process of reaching the goals on 365 til 30 wasn’t meant to torture myself. I knew she was right but I also felt sad every time I thought about giving up on the tango completely. We did share a few good moments. Listen to me, I sound like i’m talking about a broken love affair. To be totally honest, I still think we are headed for a break up but I am not ready to hang up my tango shoes just yet.

That said, I felt I needed a new plan of action for the tango. So first, I decided I had to switch to a class closer to home so it would be easier for me to feel motivated to go (kinda like getting oneself to the gym). I also thought I should find a group class instead of privates- my logic being more people equals more energy!

Cut to Monday night. I arrived to my class 20 minutes early. I am early everywhere I go and I do realize that I will have wasted half my life being early. When I arrived to class there was a woman dressed in black shiny jazz pants, a blue mesh top and crazy make-up, dancing by herself in the center of the room. She looked at me with crazy eyes and asked me if I was there for the tango class. I almost said no. I almost said no, turned around, walked out of the room and back home to safety. But I had come this far so I meekly said yes and introduced myself. Enter Claudia…one of my fellow classmates who (note to self) obviously gets there early to warm up.

After making small talk with Claudia about the world of tango, I excused myself, sat in the corner and quietly put my tango shoes on as the other students trickled in. After meeting Claudia, I thought the worst was over but then I met the men. There’s George, an elderly man who has always loved the tango (which he made a point to tell me many times very loudly in my ear), has a perspiration problem and liked to step on my toes. I was lucky enough to dance with him a bunch!! The two other men were closer to my age but very strange. I would actually choose to dance with George over the other men any day because at least he enthusiastic about the tango. One was there with his fiance practicing for their wedding- she seemed very lovely but he was an odd duck. I wouldn’t say he seemed totally comfortable dancing with other women. He couldn’t look me in the eyes even when I addressed him directly. The other guy, well, I didn’t get much from him but I can safely say he had a few drinks before class and from what I could smell I would say they were vodka’s.

I definitely had a few good laughs during the class, mostly by myself at inappropriate times. It was a totally different experience dancing with fellow students. If I had trouble following my partners lead before when I was dancing with an experienced tango dancer then I am most definitely screwed now. I was spoiled…very spoiled. This should be an interesting five weeks.

*

 365til30: instagram  @kate365, twitterfacebook

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48

21 May

I woke up this morning to this note from the universe and it could not have been more perfect considering I am 48 days away from turning 30 and my crazy journey is coming to an end.

……

The very best moment in any long journey that makes your dreams come true, Kate, comes not on the day you realize they have, but on the day you realize how little they matter compared to loving the adventure they’ve inspired. 

Don’t ask me why, I just know what I know – 
    The Universe

……

365til30: instagram  @kate365, twitterfacebook

92

7 Apr

We shot a 365 til 30 promo piece yesterday and it was so much fun to see the project and goals come alive in video! Here’s a sneak peek…

I’m off to Costco to get road trip supplies which should be a really fun place on a Saturday!

116- I think the tango and I have broken up…

14 Mar

 I have a confession…I am a tango school drop-out. Well, I guess I haven’t officially dropped out just yet, but man, this isn’t looking good. I skipped class Monday night and to tell you the truth, I didn’t even feel bad about it. I simply don’t like the tango! Actually, let me rephrase that because that’s not entirely true. I love watching other people dance the tango. I love the way their bodies move together..I love the look in their eyes as they glide through the steps effortlessly…oh, and of course, I love the passion! I find it all so incredibly sexy and captivating. I, too, wanted to do what they did and that is why I originally picked the tango as something I wanted to master this year. But when I dance the tango, it all looks…well, it all looks terribly different. Maybe if I lived and breathed the tango I could one day achieve some sort of success but I don’t. I don’t live and breathe it. Do you hate me?

It wasn’t until Brian got home from work that I realized I felt a little bad about skipping class. When he asked why I wasn’t at my tango class, I put my head down and whispered, “I didn’t want to go”. I hated saying it but once I said it, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my chest and then I kinda wanted to skip around and scream with delight…”I didn’t want to go because I hate tango class!!!” How nice to allow myself the freedom to hate something! I have spent too many years pretending I like certain things, certain people and certain ideas because I don’t want to offend and/or disappoint. So I have decided at 116 days til 30 that I’m done doing that- Life is too damn short to be filling my day with stuff that isn’t enjoyable, stimulating and worth it to me. So what that I thought I would like it…I don’t. What’s the big deal if I don’t like something?? I like lots and lots of other things!

You know what I did instead of going to my tango class?? I made a lovely dinner with the man I love, talked about his upcoming photography exhibit and stayed up very late working on my upcoming road trip across the USA!!! I could spend ALL DAY, EVERY DAY working on the road trip…every little detail gets me excited! It brings me lots and lots and lots of joy and I think that was the point of starting 365 til 30.

*

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.”

Joseph Capmbell

123

7 Mar

Oh geez, did I pick a fun new tango class to attend (please adjust your sarcasm radar). I’m not really sure what to think about my new situation. I guess it wasn’t a horrible way to spend an hour and a half of one’s life…I mean how often does one get to dance a very sexy, close and personal dance with a very sweaty elderly man named George?

As we all know by now, the tango and I have issues. We don’t mesh as well as I thought we would. It wasn’t that I hated the tango after my first few private lessons but I wouldn’t say I was totally in love with it either. It’s very very very very very very very hard for me to be stop thinking long enough to enjoy being led by the man. I still don’t understand how the woman is supposed to know where to move her feet without a set sequence. I was told by my last instructor that closing my eyes might help me feel the movements more. I tried it and all it helped me with was tripping over my feet at a greater rate. I almost thought about scrapping the tango completely for the year. Maggi even pointed out that the process of reaching the goals on 365 til 30 wasn’t meant to torture myself. I knew she was right but I also felt sad every time I thought about giving up on the tango completely. We did share a few good moments. Listen to me, I sound like i’m talking about a broken love affair. To be totally honest, I still think we are headed for a break up but I am not ready to hang up my tango shoes just yet.

That said, I felt I needed a new plan of action for the tango. So first, I decided I had to switch to a class closer to home so it would be easier for me to feel motivated to go (kinda like getting oneself to the gym). I also thought I should find a group class instead of privates- my logic being more people equals more energy!

Cut to Monday night. I arrived to my class 20 minutes early. I am early everywhere I go and I do realize that I will have wasted half my life being early. When I arrived to class there was a woman dressed in black shiny jazz pants, a blue mesh top and crazy make-up, dancing by herself in the center of the room. She looked at me with crazy eyes and asked me if I was there for the tango class. I almost said no. I almost said no, turned around, walked out of the room and back home to safety. But I had come this far so I meekly said yes and introduced myself. Enter Claudia…one of my fellow classmates who (note to self) obviously gets there early to warm up.

After making small talk with Claudia about the world of tango, I excused myself, sat in the corner and quietly put my tango shoes on as the other students trickled in. After meeting Claudia, I thought the worst was over but then I met the men. There’s George, an elderly man who has always loved the tango (which he made a point to tell me many times very loudly in my ear), has a perspiration problem and liked to step on my toes. I was lucky enough to dance with him a bunch!! The two other men were closer to my age but very strange. I would actually choose to dance with George over the other men any day because at least he enthusiastic about the tango. One was there with his fiance practicing for their wedding- she seemed very lovely but he was an odd duck. I wouldn’t say he seemed totally comfortable dancing with other women. He couldn’t look me in the eyes even when I addressed him directly. The other guy, well, I didn’t get much from him but I can safely say he had a few drinks before class and from what I could smell I would say they were vodka’s.

I definitely had a few good laughs during the class, mostly by myself at inappropriate times. It was a totally different experience dancing with fellow students. If I had trouble following my partners lead before when I was dancing with an experienced tango dancer then I am most definitely screwed now. I was spoiled…very spoiled. This should be an interesting five weeks.

138

21 Feb

Coming off yesterday’s post, I am sure this will NOT come as a surprise to you- I have hit a bit of a midlife crisis with 365 til 30. Or, as Maggi, my life coach so kindly put it- “I think 365 til 30 is starting to run you now, instead of you running it”. Ouch. What a painful thing to hear but so true. The ten goals that gave me SOOOOO much joy 6 months ago have started to feel like chores- totally not the point of this project! Maggi has urged me to remember why I originally wanted to accomplish these goals and to focus on the joy and excitement the thought of experiencing them brought me.

 When I started 365 til 30 six months ago,  I was off and running right out of the gate. Full of excitement and wonder, I happily embarked on the adventure of camping and Tassajara. After accomplishing them I moved onto my other goals for the year- learn to cook, master the tango, speak French fluently, work with my favorite websites, publish my writing (I have a book proposal floating around at a publisher…fingers crossed) and volunteer. I have realized these goals are less finite and instead are an ongoing process. I am constantly tending to them.

The last two goals…Drive Across the USA (which I am in the process of planning for April) and getting Frank, my French Bulldog (which will happen when we move) are goals that I am still working towards. With the road trip fast approaching I happen to think about it all the time. I am DYING with excitement to drive across the USA with my girlfriend Rachel– she is the perfect friend to do this with and equally excited! This goal has always been one of my favorites on the list because it’s something I have dreamed of doing since I was little girl and I can’t believe I’m finally going to do it! As the trip approaches though I have started to feel a bit anxious about it. When I put it on the list I always wondered how I would take the time off to do it right. It’s not like it’s ever really convenient to leave your life for 3-4 weeks…work and money are valid concerns. My remedy for the fear is to remember the joy the idea of accomplishing it brings me and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

With so much on my plate I decided I needed a focused plan towards finding the joy in the goals again.

I start another round of tango classes on Monday the 27th for 6 weeks and I will not skip one class…not one!

I will find one new exciting dish a week to learn! (last night it was fish provencal! It was soooooooooo gooooood- post coming!)

I will continue my volunteer work at PATH once a week.

I will spend 4 hours a week practicing my French in preparation for my trip to Paris in July!!!

I will finalize all the details for our road trip from a joyful place instead of an anxious place so that we are ready to embark on the journey in April!!

I will stay positive and grateful about the fact that my book proposal is floating around  in the world instead of anxious.

I will re-stratagize my approach for working with Take Part and Explore- I have had sooooo many meetings with both of them and feel like the timing has been off…but maybe I need to re-think my approach.

I will commit to weekly sessions with Maggi starting this week. It doesn’t matter how busy I am! They will be a priority because they always keep me focused, calm, joyful and on-track.

Oh, and most importantly, I will commit to being grateful and enjoy the process….otherwise what the hell is the point right??!

*

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.

Anais Nin

144

15 Feb


“Your work is to discover your work and then with all your heart to give yourself to it.”

Buddha