My late nights get later and later: 12.30, 1.30, and last night, 2.30. A good evening at Porteno y Bailarin, three tandas! Two with the 'diminutive Japanese woman' whose large partner got kicked last week. She tells me he was kicked four times, four times before he finally exploded. That's some tolerance. She's leaving, back to Australia, this week. Too bad: she has the kind of smile that just makes you want to smile, and everyone likes her, although few locals seem to dance with her. It's still not easy to get dances but it's like anywhere; you start at the bottom of the pile and have to work your way up. Porteno y Bailarin is friendly: the organiser is exceptionally friendly and welcomes everyone, has time for a word with everyone, including me and in good English, and everyone there seems friends, but people come to meet and dance with friends rather than with passing strangers who don't speak their language much. There was a huge crowd by 1.30, lots of talk, laughter, drinking and dancing, and it felt good to be there.
Since I don't spend so much time dancing I sit dance-watching. My couple of the evening: he looked rough and tough, with the loud harsh laugh of someone who's drunk far too much, but suddenly he was on the floor with one of the most gorgeous women there, incandescent in red and a great dancer. Their dance was fluid, sure and full of changes of direction and speed. & they were enjoying themselves: they made all the other couples look half asleep in a kind of bored bliss. He wasn't leading anything eye-grabbing or showy, it was straightforward close-hold milonguero. It was just done with such clarity and musicality: this is their music, they've danced it all their lives, they've made it their own, they inhabit it in a way few people ever will.
There was a performance too: