Ever found yourself biding time at an airport? Flight delays were up last year by 17%. Rather than sit there browsing your phone, munching on snacks, or people watching, why not find a dance partner? And not just for a swishy waltz, but a snappy tango!
Here’s an excerpt from a really entertaining story on how to make this happen from the Wall Street Journal by Rachel Emma Silverman, on Dec. 9, 2016:
It was the night before Thanksgiving and Eleftherios Minas, a construction contractor, was at Boston’s Logan Airport waiting for a flight to Indianapolis. Two terminals away, Christina Chin, an anesthesiologist, was on a layover en route to Newark.
That evening, Mr. Minas posted to Facebook: “Boston airport gate A4 until 9:30. Lead or follow.”
Ms. Chin had never met Mr. Minas, but she replied anyway: “Hey, we r at C29. How do we find you?”
“At the bar next to the gate,” Mr. Minas said.
“On my way,” she replied.
Ms. Chin dashed out of her terminal and rushed to Mr. Minas’ gate. They each pulled a pair of dance shoes from their carry-on bags, and he queued up a song on his phone. Sharing a pair of earbuds, the two strangers began moving to music only they could hear, dancing a tango as passengers around them barely glanced up from their phones.
After dancing, they parted and flew to their destinations.
That 2014 interlude, and dozens of others, are the product of “Stranded At An Airport, Tango Meet-up,” a three-year old Facebook page created during a layover in Chicago by Steve Slavsky, a Boston engineering consultant and tango teacher.
[...] Ray Bartlett, a Cape Cod, Mass., travel writer and novelist and the co-administrator of the site, has posted for tango partners at the registry of motor vehicles, in conference hotels and the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard. Last spring he found a dance partner in Marlana Patton, while both were attending a writing conference at the Park Plaza hotel in Boston.
The two strangers danced a tanda in the hotel lobby, sharing a set of headphones so they wouldn’t disturb other guests.
“There I was dancing in my socks in a lobby with someone I had never met before,” recalls Ms. Patton, of Arlington, Mass. “It is absolutely delightful when you find that intimacy when you weren’t even looking for it, and in a place that’s not even a dance floor,” she says.
Airport meetings in progress are followed avidly online. In May, Isabella Garcia spent a three-hour layover in Chicago’s O’Hare airport while heading from Austin, Texas, to State College, Pa., for a legal conference.
“Stranded in ORD until 4pm. No shoes, but I can follow in socks :)” she posted.
Mr. Bartlett, the Cape Cod writer, saw the post as he was about to board another flight. “Isabella, I’m arriving in ORD at 2:40pm. United from New Orleans...can we make it happen?? :-)”
Followers cheered the two travelers on from Facebook, wondering if they would be able to connect.
“Go Team Tanda!” posted one reader.
“And…?” wrote another.
“Ooh! Did you guys meet up?” another queried.
At 4:11 p.m., Mr. Bartlett posted a photo of him with Ms. Garcia, dancing in an embrace. “Success!!!” he wrote.
And you say you don’t know how to tango? Make this your New Year’s resolution and sign up for lessons!