THURSDAY 19TH MARCH, 11AM
It was a sunny Sunday afternoon in February when I went with my friends to a concert of Tango Extremo. Their show, Los Maestros de la Habana, is a marvellous crossover between tango and salsa, having invited Mr Gerardo Rosales, a well known salsa percussionist in Amsterdam and beyond. A very intriguing show, with accompanying videos showing images of Argentina in earlier times.
We imagined ourselves dancing around in alternately Buenos Aires and La Habana, and of course the last song was announced too soon. And then it happened. The first tones of the final song sounded and I broke down into tears.
Chan Chan. I do not remember when I heard it for the first time, but it’s a long time ago. Long before I joined the Latin American dance scene, even long before I started to understand Spanish. Despite all that, the song has been part of me ever since.
Chan Chan represents my dreams, hope, love, and energy. Everything that keeps me going. But also the pain, the sad memories, the struggle, which we all feel from time to time. Hearing the song that afternoon was nothing else than symbolic. For months, I had been doubting about some things, but suddenly I found the answer. There is only one way to go: follow your dreams and do the things you love.
I cried out of sadness, because I did not do neither of them those months, at least not enough. I cried out of happiness, because I knew the path I had embarked on is difficult, but indeed the right one. And it was also clear the next travel destination would be South America, Chan Chans home.
So here I am. Underneath a tree in Buenos Aires, with a huge traffic jam on the right side and a serene city park on the left. Just as it should be.