To buy or not to buy - San Telmo, Buenos Aires 2008

I’m sitting in a bar in San Telmo with my note book. Trying to get it down. My way of sorting out my thoughts. Nothing really fits. Strangely it seems really difficult to make a decision. When I was in Denmark it was all pretty easy. I was going to play the bandoneon as part of my field work as an anthropology student. You know the part of going native. And my field was a tango music school called Orlando Goñi. But it turned out not being easy to borrow an instrument. Now nevertheless I find myself thinking about buying one. Why can’t I decide? What's going on? The fieldwork is about to end. It doesn’t make any sense now. I feel ashamed of thinking about it. It’s like I can’t really figure out what this instrument wants from me. It should probably be the other way around. I feel like I'm a copycat. Copying my informants, the musicians in the school. It’s expensive, it is. But I can sell it again if it turns out it isn’t my thing, can’t I? Gosh it seems like I’m thinking about buying a car with a new boy friend. Maybe I’m afraid that it might just be a spontaneous idea and not something serious? Serious. What a strange characteristic to be worried about. According to what, to whom? No, it really doesn’t make any sense. It’s just a music instrument. A bit particular, but nothing crazy. Okay I won’t tell anyone. 
Just Lise.

I’m standing in front of the door of La casa del bandoneon. I’ve seen it so many times. Last year me and the girls were living on this same street, Defensa. I have no idea of where else to go. I press the bell. A man comes and opens the door. He lets me into to his bandoneon house. A lot of stairs. Kind of dark. Bandoneons all over the place. He seems nice. I tell him that I would like one. He gives me a skeptical look. He says he doesn’t know if there is time enough (I’m leaving in a few weeks). Then we talk a little bit about people we have in common. That seems to soften him a bit. He’ll call me. I have bees in my stomach. 

Talking to Julian about the school. He says that Oscar told him that I’m looking for a bandoneon. I blush. (Why is this getting to me in this way?) I get embarrassed about blushing. I say he’s right. He asks why I didn’t go to him. I try to change the subject. You need to take classes then, he says, seriously, not taking account my red cheeks. I nod, still blushing. 

Oscar just called. He has one for me. I have to give him the money tomorrow morning. I don’t know what to do. I didn’t expect this. I can only get 300 pesos per day by withdrawal and it costs 10.000. I’m panicking. I call Billy and I have to confess the whole thing. Yes, I'm buying a bandoneon. Wauw great news! Yes, yes, that’s really great news…. He offers to borrow me the money. Wow! It’s happening then. 

I’m in the bandoneon house again. I’m here with Billy. We are buying it! Oscar looks me in the eyes and says that if I’m not playing it I’ll have to give it back to him. I sink and nod. I know the story about the fuga of the bandoneons. Few instruments left here for the new generations. And many poor instruments have ended up decorating bars and restaurant in distant corners of the world. I promise. It won’t be my case. It’s a 3B. Absolutely beautiful. Negro nacarado. I feel like I’ve gotten my self a dog. Not gonna leave my side. I can’t fail it.


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