Wander to a new place within 2 miles of where you live or where you work every day. Explore the locations around which you spend most of your life. Shop nearby, eat nearby, or just stick your head in and see what the people around you are doing. Ask shop owners to tell you about their store, even if it seems apparent. Discover what the world immediately around you has in store for you.
Simply visit nearby places you haven't been.


You're getting comfortable meeting people, and you're getting comfortable doing new things. Now it's about time to setup home base. How many places have you driven by without thinking about twice? What exactly does that import store you've walked by a million times sell? It's time to find out! Remember, there's no place like home.

Bonus points!

Walk there! The more of your area you can take in on your exploration, the better. See if you can keep up the previous months' goals- keep doing your skill if you like it, and keep meeting new people if you feel so inclined.

A Favor for the Author

You'll probably be able to figure out where I live in this month's challenge if you're wily. I can't ask that you refrain from stalking me, cause, well, you're only human. I just request that when you stalk me, you be attractive or come bearing muffins.


maps.google.com - Look at a map of your area here!
www.yelp.com - Look for nearby business, restaurants, and fun things to do here!
www.freemaptools.com/radius-around-point.htm - Utilizing Google Maps, this site will
create a printable map with a radius around a point of your choosing. Simply tell it 2 miles,
then input your address!

It so happened on this first night I meandered into Dave’s Accordion School, 1/2 a mile from my apartment.  Seeing as last month’s challenge to learn a new skill had brought an accordion into my arms, this seemed as good a jumping off point as any.
Dave of Dave's AccordionI was greeted by the titular Dave, who had an impressive arsenal of squeezeboxes on display.  Accordions from all over the world covered every available inch of the store, yet had obviously been placed with a meticulous care.  Dave explained that he’d been playing since he was 9, and had started in this business when he was 26.  The store has now been running for 40 years, and is going strong, offering lessons AND the only competent accordion repair in LA county.  Dave did not inform me of this last bit, but a woman on the pier had mentioned him on Sunday.

When I told Dave I was interested in learning French waltzes, he sat down and began playing party of a waltz.  However, the door swung open mid-song, and Dave caught the eye of a gentleman who walked in and transitioned into a bold Latin American tango, then slowly began to weave in a more European theme.  Well, rather than me explain it to you, see for yourself.

It turns out the gentleman who walked in is Dylan, arriving to… tango upstairs?  Dave encouraged me to go upstairs and see just what was going on.  I ducked through a small hallway and up a flight of narrow stairs to find a small dance studio, where Dylan was waiting.  There Dylan explained that he was about to start a class, and invited me to stay and learn some Argentinian tango.

Then the night got a little odd.  Stunning women began filing in the small studio above the accordion shop, and a class I had just fallen into began. A few men filed in as the class progressed.  Dylan is a good teacher, and I learned a few interesting things about tango as the 90 minute class kicked into gear.

  1. At any point in time, the word “tango” can be interchanged with the word “sex”, and both the lessons of this class and this anecdote will remain viable. (Disclaimer, Dylan at no point said anything like that.)
  2. Tango is about the embrace.  The passion, the intimacy, and the vigor of the act is contained entirely in the couple’s embrace, and the other movements are just decorations serving that perfect contact.
  3. Tango is about the woman’s experience.  She should fall effortlessly into the man’s lead, enjoying the motions.
  4. In Buenos Aires, the clubs may be packed, but there is always room for the passion of Argentian tango.

As Dillon instructed, I attempted to lead Alexandra, Carolina, Lada, Maria, Claudine, and Aurelia- and slowly I began learning tango.  I’ve tried it once, briefly, about a year ago, but those lessons were lost, so for all intents and purposes I was a complete beginner.  I am still a beginner, but this night offered an intoxicating, if not slightly surreal, taste of latin dance.  Interested in learning yourself?  Visit www.TangoMilonGuerola.com

Overall, as I stuck my head in an accordion shop and ended up learning the latin american dance of passion, I’d say March’s challenge is off to a good start.

One Comment to “Inexplicably Learn Tango Above a Small Accordion Shop in Atwater Village”

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Brave Newbie Writers

Phil WarrenPhil Warren (81)
Founder and editor of The Brave New, Phil Warren is now an accordion player, a minister, a sonic weapons expert, a director, a photographer, a public speaker, and a bunch of other things. Mostly he's an adventurer though. An adventurer who smells nice. Except when he doesn't.
NickNick (6)
One part Burner and one part Engineer; I’ve lived through twenty-five-and-a-half winters, and aim to keep it that way. My world is a strange one, and it’s my goal to make it stranger.

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