So guess what everybody! We have the amazing, unfathomable Susan Aikens, star of the show National Geographic documentary series “Life Below Zero” with us here in Buenos Aires for a Tango Adventure! Sue is an outdoorswoman, adventurer, survivor, hunter, angler, businesswoman, loner, and now… a new tango dancer.
Sue lives in isolation 500 miles from Fairbanks and just a few miles from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge at Kavik River Camp, an exploration camp she has created to enable people to explore nature in the area. You have to take a plane to get to Kavik. Sue built her own runway! (And many other things.) Sue has become a well-loved star (check out the passion of her fans’ reviews on this page) on “Life Below Zero,” which shows the daily battles to survive in a harsh climate. When chatting with Sue, she told me clients wanting to spend time during the deep dark winter are screened by asking questions like, How many fingers are you willing to lose? Apparently the temperatures are so cold you can lose fingers if you are not careful and don’t follow instructions. Fans of the show have followed Sue’s challenges with recovering from a bear attack (the bear had her head in its mouth but she escaped) and a snowmobiling accident.
You can read about the bear attack in this Men’s Journal profile. Sue told Men’s Journal, “I had to sew my own head together, and my arm, and before my hips popped out, I went across the river, found the bear, shot him, called the trooper, and there I lay for 10 days.” According to the story, she was “finally taken to Fairbanks for treatment, and later to the Lower 48 for hip and spinal surgery.”
So you can see how wild it is that Sue has come to Buenos Aires to go from snow queen to dancing queen with our Tango Adventure team to explore other sides of herself, including of course, following in tango. For a woman who is often battling bears to survive in the most remote parts of Alaska, the choice to explore the culture of tango in Buenos Aires is….well, in a word…remarkable! There are no words for this! Sue often talks about living outside the comfort zone. I love this quote she gave in an interview, “You’re never more alive than when you’re on the edge.”
What I’ve discovered about Sue is that she is very funny, caring and thoughtful–she is quite the woman. I must say, the more I get to know her, the more blown away I am. She shows us the possibility of transformation, for sure, and the many experiences we can live in one lifetime, as you can see in the photos below. Many online say Sue has more balls than a man, but I would say she has ovaries. Why is courage associated with balls? Come on, let’s find some more body parts to associate with bravery, ladies!
All of this will give you an appreciation for the contrast in the photos you are about to see…
Here are some snaps from Sue’s Tango Adventure with us so far. . .
Our Adventure with Sue is just midway through because she is doing two weeks with us. If you’re going to come all this way to dive into tango, you might as well make the most of it. We are psyched to have Sue here with us for two weeks so we have more time to get to know each other!
If you want to explore coming on your own Tango Adventure, take the first step. It’s really easy. Sign up for more info on this page. See you there!