Saturday, August 16, 2008

Missed Opportunities - A Photography Problem

"Opportunity Never Knocks Twice"

This quote, one of my guiding principles, can be seen when my Nokia N-Series phone boots up. And how true it is!

Yesterday night I and my brother were watching Buffett and Gates Go Back to School on NDTV Profit, and a student asked Warren what was the worst investment he ever made. Warren's answer was that the bad investments he had made weren't the ones that "showed up" or were "visible", but were the opportunities that he missed.

I realised the truthfulness of this twice in the last 18 hours. There's this problem I (and millions others) face when I do photography- one frequently encounters moments which arrive suddenly, last for a very short time and then quickly disappear... giving one no time to capture them. 2 such moments came and went by in the last 18 hours:-
  1. I was on the Mall Road, driving back towards home. A family, with one little kid, was waiting for cars to pass by, so they could cross the road. As soon as my car went by, the family tried to cross the road quickly. In this hurry, 1 of the 3 balloons the little child was holding slipped off his hands and onto the road. The child tried to run back to fetch his balloon, but his parents pulled him, lest there be an accident, even as the child struggled to bring back his balloon. In this struggle, 2 more of the balloons in that child's hands slipped onto the road. It was a strange feeling to watch the child struggling to go back to the road, while his parents pulled him. The balloons were the child's world. The child is his parents' world. Both the child and the parents are trying to save their world!
  2. Today around 11:30 AM, I was walking in a corridor of the Dayanand Medical College & Hospital. A family was coming from the other side. There was a little girl along with that family, holding her father's finger. While there was sadness and anxiety on faces of all the adult family members (God bless them), the little girl was smiling, jumping and naughtily and playfully laughing. Once again, it was a strange feeling to watch sadness and anxiety on the faces of family members, even as the little girl was smiling and playing (in a hospital- unaware of the words "anxiety", "disease", "life" & "responsibility"). Ignorance is bliss!
And I couldn't capture these moments. Because they came and went by in the blink of an eye. I'll think someday about how to solve this problem.