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Wednesday 1 July 2020

Buns, Pickles, Double Crochet & Me

Whatever happened to Relax-N-Rave? A question not posted anywhere, just a little niggle in my own head.
The ongoing depressing ordeal of a series of lockdowns that are not fun even when unlocked have taken the zeal out of life. I'd given up hopes of writing anything, leave alone it being sensible. Finally, THIS happened. 👇

Warning: This post has references that only true Potterheads will get.



Yours truly started on this Lockdown journey like anyone else you know...just like the Nobel laureates, nerdy doctors, epidemiologists, brilliant heads of state and nations and the homeless person on the street - barely prepared, ill-equipped, poorly-informed with the vague idea that it was just some new fad that would fizzle out in a week or two. 
In the beginning, I was drunk on Felix Felicis, confident I could take on any kind of challenge. No maid, bring it on I say. I honed my non-existent domestic chores skills to a dazzling shine. I loved the time I had in a maid-free home. New webinars on learning everything I could dream of and more beckoned. A life of possibilities!  
I waxed eloquently about the dire situation even as I baked incessantly - from daily bread, fruit buns, pizza bases, cakes, to exotic croissants. Sweets, savouries, new recipes, old favourites all jostled for time in my already over-packed daily itinerary. I ventured into unchartered territories of pickle and jam-making in the sweltering kitchen even as I mentally lamented the futility of such endeavours, besides of course helping with girth and seat widening. Dame Washalot, Dishalot, Bakealot, Snackalot, Cleanalot...I was virtually unstoppable. 


As the Lockdown progressed well into the second month, the Dementors came in, sucking the joy out of everything. I gawked at the images every second person shared on social media of their new-found lockdown prowesses. I had joined the mad race too, knowing fully well how out of depth, races of any kind were for me. Now, only the Duracell bunnies of Lockdown continue on that path. Me? I am just an ol' Eveready, it's a wonder I'd lasted even this long! The crew I'd carefully groomed and fine-tuned to my exacting specifications of sweeping, mopping and scouring charred vessels, in the initial phase of lockdown had grown weary of the tasks. Worse still, even the sight of an empty sink or a well-risen loaf of bread couldn't banish the sinking feeling. Nothing mattered. Gluttony and binge-watching web series seemed the only things worth living for. I cursed the lockdown that had shackled my knights in shining armour - the Online Delivery Agents. Unable to shop physically or virtually was a crippling experience for this shopaholic. Like a billion other folks, I was bitterly complaining about the torture of running the maidless home, which by this time aided by the miserable weather was, I'll swear actually a factory, a sweatshop - where the sweat never stopped flowing and the sink never got empty. 


I desperately needed the Patronus Charm. The Lockdown eased to Unlock mode. Yay! Emails, SMSes from various sites beckoned me to check them out. Jubilantly gazing at my mobile, I chanted, "Add to Cart" while envisioning my happiest memories - walking in the mall with a laden trolley.
And lo home, nay, the security cabin of my housing society became like No 4, Privet Drive that gets flooded with owl mails from Hogwarts, only here the security cabin was flooded with a blush-worthy load of parcels from all possible online portals that were delivery-capable. Parcels from Big Basket, Flipkart, Myntra and Amazon, tumbled over each other while the security guard gave up calling home on the intercom announcing this flurry of new deliveries.
Of course, I conscientiously sprayed them all with the disinfectant spray as they landed home and quietly observed them resting in piled quarantine, with a self-satisfied smile. And thus I banished the rotten Dementors. 


As the lockdown continued relentlessly, I went deeper on the Dora path. I entered the netherworld of crocheting. I spent hours devouring online videos on crocheting, marvelling the twists and twirls of yarn that I had been squeamish about in my infantile youthThe first parcels from online shopping that I ripped open were the wool yarns. I did tell you, I was on the path unexplored. I took these soft bundles of fluff and vanished into another dimension. I surfaced occasionally when I remembered, I was responsible, and the only one capable of satiating the other inmates' hunger pangs. Mopping, laundry, dish-washing waited in vain for their new-found pal, but I'd found my kindred spirit in crocheting. And crochet, I did! I went at it with unbridled passion and sadly little expertise.  The crochet needle and wool yarn became my Horcruxes. I wouldn't let them out of sight. 
After a fortnight I emerged, a changed person, feeling much like a hermit who comes out of a dark cave after aeons of meditation, of course without much enlightenment but lots of entanglement. The wool yarn for some reason came in some kind of twisted bale that got tangled into knots that could have exasperated Houdini. 
However, I have something tangible to show for from my days of self-ostracization. 
Ahem, a 3'x3' woollen blanket in double crochet! I wonder what I am going do with it. I lovingly drape it on the sweaty torso of my teen and he angrily swats it away.


While we don't know how or what exactly triggered this horrible pandemic, there is little doubt where this horror came from. Adding more fuel to the flame are scary rumours of an impending war, initiated know who!
Till date, no one is sure when or if we will ever be rid of this awful viral pandemic. However, it is a good thing that the misery is a global one hence a possible resolution or mass exodus seems inevitable, yeah "Do or Die" with loads of company isn't all that bleak a proposition, is it? After all, "To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure," right? 😢☹️

The other day I walked to the market just because I was allowed to. Geared in a mask, goggles and hair net, clutching a sanitizer bottle, I was back home in ten minutes, drenched in sweat, totally panicked and paranoid! I could imagine how a domesticated cow would feel if it was released into the wild Savannah. But, I guess this ol' cow will develop a thick hide and morph into a wild bison eventually. 
Till then, let me indulge the businesses of Big Basket et al while I am still not brave enough to let in Swiggy et al.
Now, let me hustle, I have a bucket load of washing to do, you know...the veggies and fruits I just bought right after I boil the used masks. That reminds me, I gotta browse that jaw-dropping array of fancy face masks. I wonder if I can get away with the leopard print ones or maybe I should stick to the neon stripes?

Don't let the Muggles get you down, will ya? And if they do, remember to turn on the light.


You could also read my post on Lockdown Realizations.

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