Lockdown – Once in a lifetime happening – a la Honeymoon!
Never witnessed anything like this before even during wars, pandemic says my nearly 80-year-old mother.
When PM Narendra Modi asked citizens to remain indoors – a self-styled lockdown for Sunday – March 22, I was one of the first ones to tweet – What will happen with just one day’s lockdown that too on a Sunday? Little I had known that was just the trailer – the film is going to be nearly 3 months long, well almost!
This is how our new life began where there was no morning rush of jogging, gymming, exercising, instructing maids, cleaning cars, managing children, cracking heads what to wear today, rushing to catch the local, bus, dancing to clock’s needle…meetings, discussions, writing, editing withstanding. It seemed life had come to a standstill.
Now the worries had acquired a different dimension – no newspaper, just e-newspaper which we were not used to. When you read the newspaper, the family thinks you are acquiring knowledge, getting informed, when you read a newspaper on mobile you are wasting your time – new revelation. Now, the cleaning, mopping, dusting rigmarole followed by making breakfast, cooking lunch, planning dinner and to top it all – office work – which no one realised it was some work. Could never imagine a life without house help, watching movies, visiting family, friends, chit-chatting with building friends, train friends and most favourite – Shopping!
Life took a 180-degree spin for many who never knew what to do at home for 24 hours with the same set of people. But as you say – The show must go on! It started moving on!!
Amidst all this and more, the travelling time saved for work was a big boon, we had nearly five hours extra every day to ourselves, which family thought was for them!
Social Media became mother, father, brother, sister, teacher, mentor…all rolled into one telling you what all you can do during the lockdown and how technology can help you in staying connected. How you can conduct and attend meetings, yoga classes, painting classes, dance classes, cooking classes, motivational speaking, self – improvement, spiritual, religious, talks, dialogues, monologues, webinars …what not to keep you occupied.
For the first time, I realised that I can learn so many things online even at this age, though there is no age to learn. So much so that how to roll chapatis, how to knead the dough, how to mop the floor, how to surf channels, how to iron clothes, how to drape saree, except how to pass time.
Now another breed started emerging on social media who would post pictures of their activities right from leaving the bed to retiring on the bed. They are posting pictures of what they cooked for breakfast, what they will make for lunch, snacks, dinner beside their paintings, throwback photos, work-out sessions, beauty sessions, saree sessions, attending webinars, video calls of friends, family, gardening, view from their window, their children activity and what & what not to do during the lockdown.
So as soon as you reached out to phone early morning, you saw a friend working out for that hour-glass figure, and you were like OMG! The day started with a huge inferiority complex!!
Another hour passed and you see pictures of well-garnished well laid outspread with fresh fruits, juices, oats… other so-called organic (read: healthy) dishes in the name of breakfast. And here we gorged on our makhan wale aloo, mooli, gobi parathas. The pleasure of yummy parathas evaporated in a moment and you started brooding on eating such middle-class breakfast.
Now as the day progressed you watched people singing, dancing, writing, reading or pursuing upmarket hobbies. Again, you start cursing yourself for not doing any such activity. As the day moves towards the end you are enveloped with guilt, oh GOD I am not utilising my lockdown honeymoon like other privileged mortals.
There was gyaan all over – enjoy the time you have got to spend with your family! We have always been enjoying time with our family in spite of being so busy. But this statement gave us celebrity wali feeling!
Media made the most of this time by feeding us with innumerable & useless panels discussing some godforsaken topics. We had no choice but to watch these.
Now the webinars – the new kid on the block – became a fad, every Tom, Dick and Harry was doing webinars. If you are not doing or attending the webinar, you have no right to live in this lockdown.
My advice would be: Enjoy your lockdown, keep moving at your pace, in your style, nothing will happen if don’t pursue a hobby or don’t attend a webinar, dance, sing or paint. Life would be just as beautiful. You will have the satisfaction of leading a peaceful life in your own way without being under any pressure. You couldn’t have asked for more from this lockdown.
This is how I watched the lockdown – Covid19 from the periphery!
How I am spending my lockdown would feature in my next post.