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Back in Seattle, Washington,USA

Olympic Sculpture Park

Brrrr. I am cold.

Yes, laugh it is 65 degrees in Seattle and the sun is shinning. My body is used to 75 and 85 degree weather. Yes, I have turned into a weather wimp. Ahh at least it’s not raining. And the sun is shinning.

Tuesday night, we went to Gabriela’s Tango Happy Hour milonga at this fantastic restaurant, Harissa Mediterran restaurant on 65th in Seattle. There was live music, a duet of bandeon and a violin.

The restaurant is a beautiful space with wooden floors and delicious aromas of Lebanese food.

It was gratifying to see a few people that I had known before dancing tango here. I only danced 2 songs in a tanda as my foot is still tender from the a fracture in my foot. The music was good, so it’s much harder to just sit and listen, as my body really wants to dance.

Dancing at Tango Happy Hour at Harissa Restaurant

But because I couldn’t dance, many other woman in the milinga loved having an opportunity to dance with an experienced lead. I chatted, ate some good food and drank while observing folks dancing. I was happy to do so.

Dancing at El Secreto Milonga

On Friday, we will go to Patricio’s El Secreto Milonga in Lynnwood. There is a bit of a political controversy here, as
actions taken by the host during the pandemic were not admired by many Seattle tangeros.

The good news is he does draw folks from many tango communities and the dancing is good. The music he plays is usually fabulous. At this hall, there are only chairs against the walls for sitting, and no tables making socializing a but different. The wooden floors are nice to dance on. It’s BYOB too.

Dancing at Dance Underground

On Saturday, we went to Dance Underground, a long running Seattle milonga. This milonga got it’s name from the fact that one must walk down a flight of stairs to the dance hall. Once there you are greeted by Illana, the host and teacher. Her partner Toni, is usually the DJ. The room is a big rectangle with wood floors. Some tables are placed at the edge of the floor while single chairs are only against one wall. Illana usually makes all the yummy desserts.

Looking around the floor there are many familiar faces and many unknowns. The quality of the dancing is usually very good. Both men and woman cabeceo here, as this place can be very friendly. Especially if you introduce yourself to Illana as a visitor to the milonga from a different city or country.

The following weekend was the Seattle Elegante Encuentro. Starting with the Friday night milonga, then two afternoon milingas, on Saturday and Sunday and an Saturday evening milonga. The encuentro also included admission to the La Garúa Milonga early Sunday evening.

First night, Seattle Elegante Encuentro

This is the 2nd year of the Encuentro held at Polish Hall on Capital Hill, which has a parking lot and nearby limited street parking .

The hall was beautifully decorated for the event with black clothed tables with a small bowl of fresh flowers. Placed on the tables, are pieces of burned out paper with different expressions about tango and small elegante candle like lights. Single chairs were placed against windowed walls.
I believe there were approximately 140 gender balanced dancers from all over the US and Canada.

Dancing Friday Night at Seattle Elegante Encuentro

The music was marvelous with female DJs outnumbering male DJs representing Vancouver, Canada; Bari, Italy; Newport News, Virginia and Port Townsend, Washington.

Many wonderful tandas

My other favorite was a full bar, with the most amazing hard working bartender. Was wonderful pleasure to have a Martini at a Milongas.

Close embrace

Okay, I’ll share my other favorite marvelous moment.

I had a reunion with my two besties, Jan who lives in Seattle area and Christine who now lives in New Zealand. With the pandemic, we were not able to have a gathering since January 2020. The reunion was awesome as we used to attend many tango events together. Good times in the past and we started up, just where we left off.

Ahhh friends, left: Ruth [me your author] Jan and Christine

And our partners, got to meet each other, mine is Máximo from Argentina and Christine’s partner, Jamie is from New Zealand.

Was so much fun to dance [a little for me, as it was very difficult to listen to glorious music and not dance] and just hang out together. Chat and sit with new and old friends. Just enjoying living tango.

We are already planning the next gathering, in January 2023 in Buenos Aires.

Travel is my pleasure, meeting and chatting with new folks is my soul food.
Seeing and dancing with old friends is the dessert.

The after dinner at Babar Restaurant on 12th near Cherry, Seattle

And living and loving these experiences makes me who I am. Abrazo Ruth

Published by ruthoffen

Created by, Ruth Offen the founder/director of WaterWorks Gallery, a gallery opened in 1985 to showcase contemporary artists and jewelers that live and work in the Pacific Northwest. After 37 years, I have decided to spend more time enjoying life by dancing tango all over the world, traveling, continuing to develop my photography. Over many decades of amassing a personal art collection, now the process of downsizing is becoming a reality. How do we have more with less? Staying true to the motto, unencumbered by our possessions and not burdening our children with our stuff. This next process will take patience and courage. On the road to happiness. Its' the journey that counts!

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