Sunday, 1 September 2013

Are we becoming a third world country? – 2

Another criterion by which to judge thirdworldism is how long it takes to be mugged/burglarized/ have your pocket picked. In my anecdotal case, Argentina took two hours. I took a city bus to get to my destination and was obviously unfamiliar with the workings of the ticket machine. That was enough to have a guy stand so close to me that I knew he either wanted my wallet or a date. Turned out to be the former.

In the congress I attended, one delegate from Turkey had his knapsack snatched from the meeting hall, passport included. Another picked up his bag and went home, whereupon he found that the bag, which looked identical to his, was full of school notebooks and generic toiletries—obviously a well-calculated plan of theft. At an outdoor café, we sat around enjoying a glass of wine only to discover that one colleague’s laptop had been expertly purloined from beneath her seat.

In conclusion: Argentina remains a third world country. The U.S. by this measure still is not.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear that.

Watch out for the "mostarseros" "the mustard men". One guys squirts mustard (or milk etc) on your shoulder, without you noticing. 2nd guy, playing roll of helpful bystander points out you have a huge gobby stain on your jacket. Natural reaction, stop, down bags and look over should. The thieves make off with your bags. Happened to me but I was too blithe to notice, a genuine bystander noticed, and got me to a building with security to revise my stuff.