God almighty, Manola misses Argentine tango dancing like she misses life almighty. No, not the glamorous yet laughable images of yesterday's black-and-white movies.
As a former tanguera, Manola misses not just some ballroom fantasy, but the gritty, nasty reality of awkward oops and bumps with sweaty strangers, not to mention painful bunions, charlie horses, shin splints, psoaz tendonitis and broken ribs.
Manola is an injured, wounded dancer.
Manola misses the perfect imperfection, the brief but brilliant dance between one body and another finding themselves in transit ... in transit to where?
All resting on that delicate skeletal structure that supports the human body, all reacting to electrical impulses depending on chance muscular reflexes, controlled by passion and the urge to express our voices, our souls, our selves, through the magical medium of music.
Tango is the test of all tests, the challenge of all challenges, the lesson of all lessons, of giving, taking, letting go and simply mastering the art of the moment.
Tango is human: controlling and surrending all at once. Imperfect beings held in perfect lingering, swaying balance, soul to sole.
"If you have to ask what jazz is, you'll never know," said Louis Armstrong.
And so it goes with tango.
Unlike Louis darling, I'm going to cut you a little dos por cuatro. "If you have to ask what tango is, don't ever stop asking."
Is it possible that Manola is just Malena mispelled, misused and miss ... well, just miss ... miss ... missed what?
Expect a new twist, turn and dip on Sex and the Beach, because the heels of these Manolo Blahniks -- not to mention the feet of this worn-out dancer -- aren't done traipsing down the dance floor.
Warm up a little ... Last Tango in Madrid