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Flamenco Rojo

I went to Longwood Gardens with my family on Saturday. They were featuring their orchid display and they were also kicking off the 2014 Philadelphia Flamenco Festival with two shows performed by Pasión y Arte, a Flamenco dance company based in Philly.

We loved it all! Being in the conservatory is like being in a paradise, with the pond, and the water falls, and the vegetation. It was a relief to our core to see green, green grass.

With all of this beauty and art surrounding us, I couldn’t help but to be drawn to the people that converged at this one spot in the universe at the same time, and I thought how beautiful an unburdened human is. It must be the most beautiful thing there ever has been. I so wanted to converse with all of them. I got to share smiles with many: men, women, children, young, old; all walks of life. I even got to share smiles with some of the performers during their performance, as there was a deluge of natural light illuminating the entire audience. It is a giant greenhouse, so the performers were able to see the expressions on our faces.

I shared a moment with the singer as she was clapping “a compás”(with the beat) while I was trying to stay in unison with my clapping. For fear I would go off time while being watched I stopped my rhythmic attempt and left it back to the experts. Clapping a compás seems to be an art unto itself, and would be assigned only to the most competent.

To keep perfect rhythm with your fellow performers is something very intimate, very human, and it is an anchor to the soul. It is of God. Something unfailing.

As it was, we did end up meeting and conversing with a good number of people. One family had just received one of the family members back from the Dominican Republic where she had attended the wedding of the daughter of a good friend. She was not far from where my sister lives!

We were, hundreds of us, all uninitiated as a family, but a family of sorts none-the-less. We were all unique but in rhythm with one another. Enthralled. And I remembered my hope, and it became stronger.


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