First we had to adjust our lives, families, eating habits, and work to lockdown and home office. We struggled through the absence of routine, no longer being part of a morning commuters’ rat race, or being on a tight schedule to cram in work, school, sports, socialising and household chores all into 16 hours. Days became weeks of uncertainty, hours of cleaning, moving, dusting, washing, cooking, baking, planting, or for some of you, coming up with creative ways to entertain your children so you can get some work done.
After the first two weeks we embraced the concept of extended home incarcerations aka lockdowns, with no tangible end in sight. Zoom, FaceTime, WhatsApp and every possible portal to virtual reality and socially distant communication became our new realities, Webinars and telemedicine were in while juggling frayed nerves, dwindling supplies in the pantries, and nary a clue where to source more flour, masks or hand sanitises.
With all the humans locked indoors sitting on indecent amounts of toilet paper, trying to avoid drinking or injecting disinfectant or inserting UV devices into our bodies, the animals took over the cities – bears hanging out in malls, crocodiles, kangaroos, goats, sheep, deer walked, waddled or hopped along the streets and pavements, and instead of busloads of tourists, the dolphins and jelly fish returned to Venice.
Meanwhile, by weeks 3 and 4, we have unlearned birthday parties, weddings, funerals, visiting homes for the aged, holidays, dates, hanging out in pubs and beer gardens, or chilling at the beach. Our hair has gotten out of control, the weighing scales begin to tell horror stories, we are running out of things to watch on Netflix, and have no clue whether it is Tuesday or Thursday. Even worse, we have dispensed with having to use deodorants, perfumes, slacks, suits, pumps, sunglasses and handbags. Instead, a colourful top for that next Zoom meeting will do, I can stay in my pyjama pants or shorts, – oh, it’s just an audio and no video call? Even better, no need for a bra and make-up, and hell yes, I will stay in the ratty old bathrobe. Oh dear, it is a video call? How to I keep the menagerie under control so that there is no barking, meowing or squawking in the background or popping up rudely on the screen while discussing the future of the company?
So when lockdown is being lifted, and I am half way to the bus stop two hours later than planned, I realise that I left my watch, scarf, lunch container, and power bank at home, forgot the deodorant (but remembered the perfume), and am desperately patting my pockets for my face mask and hand sanitiser. Thank goodness I remembered to pull on underwear!
It takes me twice as long to dress up now, because I can’t figure out what non-lockdown attire will match my face mask, and I keep forgetting that do indeed need a bag and shoes when heading out the door. Oh the struggles of a civilised world!
Restaurants are no fun anymore because I can’t hold the menu or take forever to choose my food, and fast food places are annoying because you have to stand in line outside. Sure, shops and malls are open again, but you can’t just walk in as you please since there is a limited number of people who can be inside at a time.
Some one explain this crazy inverted world to me!!!