Dear Readers, you may notice the dates of the Blog do not match the Flash Post dates which are in real time. The blog was written in 2009 and saw the light of day 6 months back when my younger daughter discovered it and decided to bring it to you here.
Like Old Times | Flash Post 431

Like Old Times | Flash Post 431

Button, much has happened in the last couple of years to leave wounds that may never heal but when I sent the family the following message when they were at work and I home alone, it felt like life was slowly taking a turn for the better. The message read “ME TIME after 2 years of the pandemic. I’m loving it”.

As far as I know, we can’t say goodbye to the pandemic yet because new variants are emerging everyday and we have to continue to be cautious.

You’re right, Button, but the reality is that the pandemic will become an endemic which we will have to learn to live with.

I think we did a post about the ME TIME you thoroughly enjoyed between 5.30 and 7.30 every evening when the rest of the family would be at work and the staff would go back home after completing their chores for the day. You’d sing aloud even though you croaked at times, do your jig, wriggle your belly like belly dancers and, do what you liked doing most of all—experience silence in its entirety. And then of course the pandemic struck and, before you could say Jack Robinson, life seemed to have turned topsy-turvy. The little time you found for yourself after 2 years must have made you feel nostalgic! Also hopeful that we were slowly inching towards some kind of normalcy!

Indeed.  But, to begin with, I simply sat back and let silence embrace me. That in itself was a feeling I can’t describe.

What was the first thing that hit you when lockdown was announced and you realised that you and every member of your family would be stuck at home for the first time? There was also no way of knowing when the lockdown would be lifted and life would return to normal! Since you are someone who likes order and a certain method in the way you function, how did you react to the sudden dysfunction and chaos all around you?

It threw me off-balance initially but, after a period of time, I got adjusted to a new way of life. That became the new normal till recently when the rest of the family went back to work. But I was not the only one tweaking life a little here and a little there. All of us were trying to adjust to a different kind of existence that we were not used to. You remember Dost doing the dishes sometimes and laying the table for meals while barididi and chotididi watered the plants in the garden, did dishes and even swept and swabbed the entire house?

But how can one forget the horrible episodes of death, penury, starvation, loss of livelihood, shattered dreams…so easily. Don’t they haunt you?

They do and will haunt each one of us forever but life has to move on too. It’s a mix of the good, the bad, the not so good and the not so bad. I am 68 today and the pandemic was the stormiest 2 years of my life. That same storm brought a lot of people down on their knees. Some were wiped off the face of the earth. Others were less afflicted. Very few managed to sidestep the storm. Sometimes we have to leave behind the bad and the ugly and move ahead in order to heal. The time I got to be my myself, even though it was brief and I simply sat and took in the silence, felt awesome.

Is it not possible to find that ME TIME in a room full of people?

If I am in a room where the rest of the family is discussing work, I quietly slip into a space where I focus on my breathing while they do theirs.

You mean you meditate.


Don’t you get distracted with all the discussion the family engages in? I’m sure you find some of it interesting!

I get distracted very often. But meditation is all about weaving through voices, sounds, disturbances till you reach that spot where you can finally disengage yourself from everything that’s happening around you.

Does that mean you’ve found your ME TIME again?

I have actually got better at it because I can do the same in a room full of people.

Is it tougher?

When I get distracted, I stop.

Have you fallen asleep sometimes?

I have. At times.

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