We drove three hours from Joshua Tree National Park down to San Diego, and picked up Debbie Crosser, our tango violinist friend from Grand Rapids at the San Diego airport. Our back seat was already bursting, but we managed to squeeze in her amp, violin, and bag. We met our hosts Linda and Daniel Escobedo along with Linda Garwood at Ciao Bella, an Italian cafe owned by the Escobedo's that hosts weekly tango events in La Mesa (a west suburb of San Diego). They completely refreshed us with Coffe drinks, smoothies, and a tomato, mozarella, basil salad with fresh bread. Andrew moaned about the coffee, "ohh, I can tell we're on the west coast now."
That night we taught the musicality class and played for the milonga at a dance studio called Dancefor2 in San Diego. As with all the other places we have played so far, the milonga was well attended, and people were excited about the live music. It was great to play as a quartet, Deb's violin filled out the sound and acted as a glue between the flute and the other two chordal instruments. When we played the first tango of our first set, Gallo ciego, everyone just sat there and listened attentively. Afterwards they clapped with enthusiasm and then Avik joked about their group being the first to just sit and really listen to us play without dancing. By the middle of the second song almost everyone was up and out of their seats dancing, about 70 people!
The next day Andrew, Debbie and I visited Pacific Beach while Avik taught private lessons. That night Avik and I taught a class on milonga, and then all four of us joined with 6 other San Diego musicians: Marzio, Mila, Justin, Clayton, Sabah, and Marcel for a workshop and jam on tango music. Many of the dancers from the community stayed to listen. We danced afterwards to recorded music, our feet still going even though we were beat!