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How to Spend Sunday Afternoon in Paris: Tango on the Banks of the Seine

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It’s a sleepy Sunday afternoon in Paris. What to do?

Wander the paths at the Jardin des Plantes, admiring the late season dahlias? Gaze at the Gauguins in the Musee D’Orsay? Have a citron presse at a non-descript corner café?

Certainly most Parisians will not be found on the treadmill at the gym, washing mountains of laundry, shopping for the week’s groceries. Or whatever it is we do to play catch up before Monday morning rolls around.

Non, les Parisiens—at least the lucky ones—will be ambling along the left bank of the Seine somewhere in the 5th. There, as the bateaux mouches glide by, they’ll be taking a class in the fine art of…

Tango-dancing.

Admittedly the music playing on a boombox, channeled through a scratchy loudspeaker with miles of cable, is a bit distorted. And the steps rather different from the ones we saw in Buenos Aires.

More halting, less fluid….but somehow no less dreamy.

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It is, after all, a beginners’ class. There’s no mistaking the authority of the wispy gentleman in the striped shirt..

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Or the intent expressions of his students

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Some are already passionate dancers, here to learn new fancy footwork…

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And some are passionate about each other. Could the intricate steps of the tango follow the twists and turns of their romance?

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For the rest of us (whether looking at our feet or at each other), tango is a beguiling way to rethink a Sunday afternoon in Paris.

Or wherever you might be…

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