COVID-19 Way of Life

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We are in the middle of a pandemic and the world has come to a standstill. Some call it the result of human’s bad karmas while others call it a time when our mother earth is shut down for repair. Well, whatever it is, we all are well aware of this highly contagious China's baby.

I am not here to educate what novel coronavirus is rather I am here to grab your attention and share how corona way of life means to middle-class Indians. Not the rich! Not the poor! Only the middle class that has enough to feed their family well and stay at home without fear of missing on necessities. So here is the "Mango Man" (Aam Aadmi) version of COVID-19.

It all started in the first week of March when we initially heard about a few COVID-19 positive cases and thought that it won't impact our lives much. However, by the end of this week, we found ourselves looking for masks and sanitizers but we still didn’t understand how grave the situation was. In the second week, we were introduced to words like quarantine and lockdown which we could hardly pronounce correctly and laughed at. What the hell!! who will sit at home the whole day!! No ways!! There has to be a way out of it other than this, isn’t this we all thought then?

All of a sudden school started closing, final exams started canceling, offices started declaring compulsory work from home; we were advised by our parents to stock up on groceries and domestic helped stopped. Yes, it started heating up now!! Then came the Janata curfew day when we all for the first time in our lives practiced a one-day complete lockdown. We had mixed feeling that day; it was pin-drop silence all around and we enjoyed the task given by our honorable PM.

Everyone seemed to have been struck by anxiety initially when 21 days nationwide lockdown was announced. All confused, scared and millions of thoughts crossing our minds on how things will be henceforth, will we get our necessities, how to stay completely at home with minimal human interaction, am I already sick, should I gargle daily, etc, etc. People rushing to grocery stores, long queues in front of shops, news flashing headlines of workers migrating from cities, everyone glued to news channels for the latest updates.

Days passed and we slowly got adjusted. Fitness freaks started working out at home and uploading videos of the same on social networking sites, with no maids entire family took up the household and helped each other, DD started streaming long lost series like Ramayan and Mahabharat to cater the viewers during the lockdown, groceries fruits vegetable milk and basics were available as promised by the government. Some are learning to bake while others are learning to cook and clean. To my surprise I see celebrities doing basic chores themselves, I don't know if it's fake or true but at least it gives us a feeling that we are not alone in this. This day by day adjustment leads us to a new normal, i.e., COVID-19 way of life that has its foundation on social distancing yet digitally connected.

Whenever I talk to my friends and family, I realize that many of us have overcome the fear of unknown and trying to build our new life around COVID-19 rules. Let's all stay home and stay safe and use this COVID-19 way of life to unleash something within us that we always wanted to do. Jai Hind.

Kaweri Mishra is a freelance writer based in Bangalore. She is originally from Begusarai, Bihar.


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