The other day I was watching one of my few addictions on TV – Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations“. The episode was “Argentina”. For those of you who do not know Tony’s style of travel and food shows, he is not your typical travel show host. His style is more – in your face and borderline rude. He usually visits the parts of cities and countries which will not even make a mention in the regular travel books and shows. So here in Argentina he was strolling in the slums of Buenos Aires and describing the decrepit conditions people live in that neigborhood. To me, it did not look any different from a slum in India. Then Tony made a very beautiful statement:
“And there it is the essential symbol of the third world optimism”. The camera panned to the top of a single story cement house and there were those steel rods poking out of the pillars from the rooftops. I could not find an exact picture but here’s one to give you an idea what I mean. You can see these in countless houses and buildings in India too.
Tony continued “What I mean is that the owner of the house is saying that – No sir, I am not done yet, I am going to build one more floor up there when the time is right. “
I had never looked at these ugly steel rods poking out of roof tops in that way. Perspective, aye!