February…the month of love and friendship, as it is celebrated in Mexico. I am remembering a dear old friend Bertrand Boudreau, who rode a bicycle round the world 65,000 miles to carry a message of concern for children in a world affected by AIDS. Bertrand gave me a small book before he left Puerto Vallarta…Passion by Barbara de Angelis. Her words are so apropos for me this month: The more you love, the more you live with passion, the more you give others permission to do the same.
The past few months I have been following three passions in my life and each seems to be flowering in wonderful ways…tango, Wallace Method, and painting. I have always searched for balance and flow in my life and in each day. It is often not easy to find when we are pulled this way and that by demands for our time, commitments, responsibilities, and perceived limitations, but when it does come together…if only for a day…it is delicious!
In October, I left for a month by myself in Buenos Aires to dance tango as much as I could…to feel like I could dance with anyone who asked me. And what a month it was!! I joined Luciana Valle’s TangoIntensivo for a week. This is a totally unique program that pairs each student with a professional dancer from the best young performers/teachers. Luciana trained her diagnostic eye on each of us and pinpointed the most minute detail that would correct our individual problems. I took private lessons from my favorite milonguero Angel Cristaldo, and sampled classes in many of the milongas and schools, including those at Tango Queer. I also spent some time ordering custom shoes at ArSil and dresses from Anabela at amazing prices. The minute the plane landed back in PV, I was already looking at the 2008 calendar to plan my return.
This month at TangoVallarta I took the next important step with workshops and private classes from visiting masters Beatrix Satzinger and Michael Young. Their very special teaching approach took me to a new rapturous level in close embrace tango. TangoVallarta will be adding more dance opportunities to their calendar with the completion of our instructors’, Al and Barbara Garvy’s, new home with two dance floors.
The Wallace Method that I have written about so often has become an integral part of my work week with regular classes offered in my studio and a schedule of individual appointments available for clients. I am now a full-fledged practitioner. I surprised myself; bodywork was not something I ever I thought I would be doing. The personal joy I find in this work and the results for my clients brings me incredible satisfaction and joy. The 2008 Puerto Vallarta Wallace Workshop, which begins on February 21st, will be an opportunity to further expand my understanding and skills.
Also in my studio, there are new paintings underway in gorgeous, brilliant colors and flowing forms. Watch for news and new paintings on my website later this spring. I am off in a totally new direction.
My glass fusing buddy, Carol Anne Anderson, has opened her studio in Puerto Vallarta to budding artists and those needing a shot in the arm and a fun day-off playing. She offers classes…Oops, Perfect!...to remove the idea of mistakes in your work. Everything is an opportunity not a mistake. I did her silver casting workshop recently and when my vision didn’t turn out to be the koi I had had in mind, I renamed it Witch Doctor Under Full Moon. What a great day. Having spent her working life teaching art, Carol Anne is prepared to offer a wide range of topics including: glass fusing, silver casting, and silk painting.
New in PV…Kassandra Shaw Jewelry on Basilio Badillo. Kass carries a gorgeous selection of unusual jewelry at reasonable prices including designer pieces using unusual natural materials such as fossilized shells and geodes. Her gallery sparkles with bright colors in shoes, bags and hats plus Kass’s own paintings. Her models are worth mentioning, too…they are in all her ads and often at the front door to greet arrivals…Leonardo and M.J. Bean, two poised chihuahuas adorned in their own unique necklaces.
In my last newsletter I mentioned the group AutismO2 and the work they are doing with autistic children in Vallarta. Considering the epidemic level of autism, not just here, but everywhere (1 out of every 150 births in the US according to the New York Times!!), supporting their efforts is very worthwhile. Recently BananaCantina chose AutismO2 for their special Wednesday night dinner. Every Wednesday BananaCantina invites a guest host to select his or her favorite charity to represent. A percentage of the proceeds from all of the dinners goes directly to the group and raffle tickets are sold for outstanding gifts from many supporting business. Such generosity comes from the heart. And our special city by the sea seems to inspire it. If you are in town on a Wednesday, call or email BananaCantina for your reservation.
Monthly highlights…two events that happen each month are already on my calendar for months to come…The Breakfast Club and Girls’ Night Out. They are crazy, noisy, and wonderful times to get together with girlfriends. Well actually I have seen some brave guys hanging out at The Breakfast Club, too. Coco and her daughters whip up a terrific buffet breakfast the first Friday of every month at Boca Bento. Girls’ Night Out is the creation of Lydia and Anne at Uncommon Ground at the Buddha Lounge…or as we all say at The Buddha. They had the same business in New Jersey but, while on vacation in PV, looked at each other and wondered why they couldn’t do it here instead. And so they packed up every wine glass, teacup, crystal, and chair and came south. The delicious light fare and congenial atmosphere have become an instant hit. But here is a warning…these events are so popular that you must have reservations.
Happy Valentines and have a passionate spring,
an 2nd...a birthday tango waltz
TangoIntensivo Buenos Aires 2007
Workshop with Beatrix and Michael
Stretching at PV Wallace class
Oops Perfect...Witch Doctor Under Full Moon
Kassandra Shaw Jewelry
Charity Night at BananaCantina:Debbi and guests