Viv wanted to pamper herself today. Being a mere man this goes beyond my comprehension, so I left her to it and went off to buy CDs.
I caught the subte down to Callao and then walked through to Lavalle. From here it is only two blocks to Euro records. I had spent the morning and most of yesterday evening going through their catalogue the size of the task I have set myself is immense. I can only make a start this trip.
I arrived again at that door rang the buzzer and was allowed in. The old guy who had welcomed me yesterday was not here. There were two men involved in lively discussion in the inner office and a girl sitting at a desk. She put her head through the hatch and told me to take a seat.
I sat perusing the CD’s that were on the shelves out here for a while, and then she asked me in. In my faulting Spanish I said I had a list which she took from me. I apologized that I did not have all the catalogue numbers, but it did not seem to matter, she knew where every one was.
Soon she had a pile and seemed to think that was it. I picked up my notepad and said “hay otra”. On the internet site all the prices were in Dollars so I had brought the US currency that I had brought back and to with me for years, never having a good use for it. At this point she explained that she did not have change so could not take dollars. It got confusing now, and then she said “I speak good English”. She explained again that she did not have change, so could not take dollars. Even in English I did not quite understand but agreed to pay in pesos.
It was, as well I did not show her page three of my list, she took almost all the pesos I had with me. I was hoping to take some pesos home with me this time, but I suppose American Dollars are a less risky currency to hold on to. I can always buy more pesos next year.
People always ask why we keep trying new milongas, well you never know what you are going to find; Somebody suggested to Viv that we try Armenia 1353, well my first reaction was “No way, I am not going to La Viruta again” Viv said “It is not La Viruta” so I did some checking. La Viruta is at Armenia 1366, the other side of the road, this milonga is La Milonguita. So I thought “let’s give it a try.
Now opposite Association Armenia (Home of La Viruta) is a church, still Armenia, but a church none the less. We found a gate and walked in, the security guy sent us to the little gate where there was a pay booth. We started off badly as we were now standing the wrong side of the queue. I was then shocked somewhat by the entrada at thirty five pesos. Still we were here; best make the most of it.
We were going to be in what after all was a church hall and we often use them at home. This one was somewhat different than the ones we have at home though. The foyer area was as big as most UK church halls and we passed through to a magnificent room with a proper curtained stage and a balcony all the way around.
The room itself had a parquet floor that was in general good condition although there was some damage from tables, in places. The walls were cream coloured with gold details all around. The effect was very fifties ballroom and unlike most venues here well maintained.
Again when we saw the drinks prices we were shocked; a good fifty percent dearer than other clubs, this was going to be an expensive night.
They have a novel way of getting around the, dimmed light, bright light debate in here; the lights are up when the Cortina is played but they gradually dim them as the tanda progresses.
Viv still suffering was finding it hard to keep dancing and she had just promised me the next tanda when they had “the bit in the middle”. I am sure there is some name for this and it varies from club to club, here it was all rock and roll.
I got another tanda in before the organizer took the floor again and announced the live band. I knew we were having a band but did not know who.
She announced “aplausos por Los Reys Del Tango“. This was incredible, we never expected this. Well we sat out the first tanda and just watched them perform. The skill and dexterity of these (mostly quite old) guys is incredible. After the first tanda Viv said “go and play”. So I saw a lady I had danced with in El Arranque and we were off.
The music was lively and it took all my floor craft to stay with the music and avoid crashing, but I think I did ok. They did four tandas and I managed to get dances for the remaining two. Those four tandas, without doubt were worth the expense of the evening. I only regret not having my camcorder with me.
It would have been great to have some record of the night.