Friday, September 18, 2020

Help! I have no idea what to do with my hard-earned Unlockdown

Has prolonged isolation robbed me of my ability to have a normal conversation again?  Should I move to a cottage in the hills and prepare for a rest of life in solitude! 

After all these months of keeping in touch with friends and family through WhatsApp forwards and emojis I have forgotten how to have an intelligent conversation. 

The much fantasised unlockdown has been set into motion. We are finally free to do what the government wants us to do - watch Arnab burst his capillaries on Republic TV as he brainwashes the masses.  But left to our own devices, we have no idea what to do outside of our homes anymore.

The thing with captivity is, after a while you get so comfortable with it, you start calling it the new normal. The initial few weeks of confinement are choppy though and bring out your inner Mamata Banerjee. You bang your dirty pots and pans, attack dirty floors with the mop, believe every conspiracy theory you read and oscillate between bouts of anger and fear. Then you get so used to spending your days like that lizard stuck to the wall in stupefied silence, it becomes your comfort zone.

One day after much deliberation and long winded  arguments with your inner-self, you step out armed with sanitizers, masks, and a fluttering heart to a world that isn’t the same anymore.

The dining precincts, pubs which would give you a happy headache with loud laughter, louder music as you waded through a sea of city dwellers desperate to have a good time, now resemble abandoned cities and civilisations. You can almost hear sad violin tunes playing in the background as tears run down your eyes and season your cheeks.

Perplexingly, local markets thronging with daredevils dressed like bank robbers in their masks on their chins and sunglasses don’t make you happy either. They make you nervous, fidgety and almost angry. 

Most of your friends are still revelling in the euphoria of saving the world by vegetating at home, not shackled by their bras. They mulishly refuse to pay heed to your pleas to meet. Luckily for you there are a few odd ones as desperate as you who you manage to coax out of their caves with the promise of a rainbow and reviving forgotten chemistry.