Diary Of The New Me
Diary Of The New Me11 mins 171 11 mins 171
Too bad I couldn’t go out and enjoy the rain today. It rained so heavily! That reminds me, Modi uncle actually declared a national curfew till 14 April, starting from tomorrow! Think of me, I couldn’t even go out during my board exams. Come on, there’s a limit to how long you can just wake up at 10 a.m. or later and spend the entire day like a couch potato with nothing to do but read! I want my normal school life back!
Happy April Fools’ Day! There is going to come a time in your life where April 1st is no longer April Fools’ Day for you. Not because such people aren’t fools, sure they are, but because they’ve outgrown this event. Somehow, I’ve reached that point in my life. I didn’t even remember today was April Fools’ Day till Kovidh sent me a document entitled, “Lockdown period extended”. My heart nearly skipped a beat! But it was fake, of course!
Oh, and at 7 p.m. today, Dad surprised me by calling me and turning on Mahabharat! I’m really into hearing this folklore and all-but mind it, ‘hearing’. I don’t fancy watching it because the story goes very slowly. Besides, Dad is an amazing storyteller. I did watch it for an hour, though, just to keep his heart.
You know, it’s kind of nice to spend your entire week like it’s a weekend and when it is the weekend, start over to look forward to another weekend throughout the week! I have no planning of what day it is, anymore. But as fate would have it, just when I was thinking about this, I found this quote while reading ‘The Alchemist’: “When each day is the same as the next, it is because people fail to recognize the good things that happen in their lives every day that the sun rises.” Good things. Like when bhaiya and I make silly songs which, by the way, make no sense to normal people but are quite deep in our puny opinions! Like when Dad praises me at every little achievement and fails to deny me anything I ask for. Like how Mom baby-talks to me each day to wake me up!
I finally had my first excursion in weeks! For three weeks, I had been confined to home, not stepped outside our main gate even for once! Well, Mom and Dad had gone to the market twice or so, but not me. So I went to Delhi, geared up like I am going to an afflicted place, where a disease had rotten everyone and no one had touched the things in years. Just the reality was, people had, and they’d touched those a lot! I wore a surgical mask (which I’ve wanted to wear for a long time because of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’) but that gave me shortness of breath and the opportunity to Dad to tease me by calling me ‘Sheldon’. I had to wear rubber gloves too (which seem to be very fancy on the surface, but little do you know how irritating they can be to a person’s skin!) and my hands were draining in sweat. Even at home, we had to sanitize the groceries and leave them for 2 days. I can’t decide whether the entire experience was exhausting or exciting!
Modi uncle’s going to extend the lockdown tomorrow. Of course, he’s only said he’s going to ‘speak to the nation’, but who doesn’t know? Besides, it’s better if he does extend it. I want to delay school for as long as possible! Truth be told, the lockdown did take away our annual field trip. But it’s better to sit at home than to attend those torturous P.E. classes, doing manual labor in the scorching heat. I can’t understand how some people find bathing in your own sweat, refreshing! Moreover, all my friends have split up and sorted into separate sections because of the stream selection. Better tolerate the same 3-4 family members than to bear with the 40 buffoons in the class!
Now the suffocating lockdown has started appearing as a boon! I’ve finally recovered from my cold and cough (and from the mythical feeling that I had COVID-19!). I realized a funny thing today. When Anne Frank started writing a diary, Hitler and the Holocaust came along. When I did (believe me, my attempts to write a diary anytime before 2020 had failed within a month), this pandemic came along! Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a narcissist, I just believe you could have some magic in you!
I believe in karma. Our online classes had started today (everyone was grumping on the outside but jumping on the inside) and no one knew how to use the wretched thing! You’d think our generation is full of tech-savvy, but there were many hassles even for us. Don’t even ask how it was for most of the teachers. They kept saying, “How do you do this? Give me a minute.” As for the teachers who were always sweet to us, the students conveniently unmuted themselves and talked to the teachers. As for the grumpy ones who used to scream, “Stop talking!” in the actual classes, no one wanted to unmute themselves and the poor teachers had to say, “Please say something!” Karma, you see?
Here comes another milestone in 2020. Mom, Dad, and I are going to get a haircut! In the lockdown, that’s a big deal. Now families go collectively! Our stylist opens up the salon for a few selected customers in a few days. Mom wants us to wear bedsheets while getting a haircut (she technically said, “wrap around an old sheet” but that’s just how terrible it is in my head), but I’m most certainly not doing that, so I’ll figure an alternative since their robes are ‘not clean enough’. Fingers crossed, though!
I woke up this morning to hear my parents explain to me how I should exercise and improve my immunity. They’re of the opinion that schools might open up (for real) in July. I remember people in our Physics class pleading that even semester exams should be held online! Can you imagine that? Ma’am asked a student when schools would open according to him, and he answered, “December.” Ma’am was so shocked, she replied, “Oh, not so late!” (Then the student made a lame remark that he meant December 2021 but that joke probably isn’t even worth telling)!
But the status of online teaching is lovely! Imagine students brushing their teeth in the real classes while the teacher is speaking! I hope when it all normalizes, we only have to go to school once a week, and it’s online for the rest of the days. I’d hate to miss the fun online, or to miss meeting my friends at all!
For goodness sake! My family is after my health like a mama bear dashing at fish for its baby! We measured my oxygen saturation levels (using Mom’s phone, not that wretched pulse oximeter Dad bought because it’s defective; it shows 97 or 98% all the time, I’m certain it’d show this even for a collapsing person). And my oxygen saturation came out to be 94%. Dad nearly fainted at my lack of oxygen! So I was made to stand in the balcony for 10 minutes to take in oxygen. That’s still bearable when you think no one’s incapable of breathing in. But when I was told to eat an immunity-boosting tablet, I nearly fainted! As weird as it is, I can’t swallow tablets! I can’t believe I had to waste 3 hours and 4 tablets on trying to swallow down the thing!
I may not be aware of all the news and how this pandemic is impacting politics, economics, and all, but I’m well aware of what it’s doing to our regular lives. Having spent 3-4 months locked with us boring 4 people only, we’ve gotten bored and tired of each other. And yet, each day has something special, funny and new to it. You’d even get bored of the same four walls of your room, and eventually your entire house. I suggested we shift to North Carolina and live in a huge house close to Nicholas Sparks. That would be ‘living the dream’! But no one takes my ideas seriously!
P.S.: On second thought, even London seems good enough! I blame the lockdown for all my silly ideas.
Strangely, I found out today that, in theory, the lockdown has been uplifted. It’s been a while and it’s only partial but most people are careful enough to stay at home. The best way to find out, in India (or Delhi at least), whether people are confined to homes or are going out dauntlessly, is to check the pollution. Pollution is back to high, Ganga is polluted again. Humans! It’s almost as if polluting the air we breathe is as imperative to us as breathing itself.
Utterly weird things are happening. I’m the only teenager in the house and the only family member who doesn’t act like one. Bhaiya has started becoming conscious of his appearance in the market! You’d think he should be the one who’s not embarrassed by little things, but you’re going to be shocked. Yesterday, in the market, I said, “Let’s go to that store instead, this chocolate isn’t available here.” And he went like, “Oh, come on, what will the others think? We’re indecisive?” Then sometimes you can catch him hesitating about another tiny thing. Mom (as hard to believe that is) has started smiling one moment and then going off about some petty thing the next! First comes a smile, then a shout, then a sulk and finally a laugh. Dad’s case is slightly understandable though. A certain Mr. Sharma in his office recently died (due to COVID-19) and he was nearly dad’s age. So Dad finds it easy to get over this sad fact by bringing it up again and again, with each person. God knows how these people deal with teenage issues.
Being the nice daughter that I am, I decided to cook dinner today and take a little burden off of my parents’ shoulders. I went with the recipe for Veg. Lasagna. And turns out, I did quite well! But now, only because an inexperienced amateur chef didn’t know how long to pre-heat (and did it for a bit too long), I got banished from the kitchen! Although I had managed the situation perfectly well, dad had to come in to check the heat (despite knowing it was overheated!) and got a slight burn on his hand. Then the proclamation was given, but since the dish was already nearly completed, I do deserve to think I’m a good chef. Just not a very socially-acceptable one.
I just read this sentence from a certain date (30 January): “These people have taken away our youth.” They really have! Not in the sense that I’d written earlier but in many more ways. You see, with the virtual school in action, how are we supposed to sit in groups and play charades? Draw on tables? Sing songs when there’s no teacher in the class? Online, one minute the teacher’s there, the next minute she isn’t, and if you try singing in that short span of time, you’ll end up in the ‘Tower of Gods’ incident. I must have told you, in our chemistry class, a boy once decided to take advantage of the network issues with the teacher and carry out his shenanigan. Up he spoke, “ Bro, have you watched the Tower of Gods? It’s such an amazing movie!” And the other partner in the mischief went, “Oh yeah bro, it’s the best movie ever.” Then suddenly came in our teacher to spice it up, saying, “Oh yes children, don’t worry, we’ll watch Tower of Gods!”
But you know, the thing about children is that we always find a way out. I’m a good girl, I don’t involve myself in any of my classmates’ mischiefs, but that doesn’t stop me from enjoying them at times! When students were rookies in the field of online mischief, they’d do silly things such as unmuting yourself and playing a song. Then the child’s name would flash on the screen and the teacher would scold him right on. Now they’ve found out loopholes. For example, one of my friends joined the class from two devices and unmuted him, and the teacher’s voice started echoing! But to be honest, these do get irritating sometimes.
In a strange way, though, I like the fact that they have taken away our youth. I’ve become so deep in these months. Earlier, it was the same routine over and over again, there was no increment. You wouldn’t believe, I recently recited a poem to my parents, which I had written when I was brimming with overwhelming emotions. But my parents couldn’t believe I wrote such a mature poem! Without the lockdown, I wouldn’t have been able to find out that I love poetry so much, or that my favorite sound is the chirruping of birds, or that my own company is the one I enjoy the most. I like the person I’ve become, with the lockdown.
I came across just the perfect thing today! There’s this writing competition on ‘Lockdown Life Lessons’. And you know what the best part is, there’s no specific restriction on the genre, and no word limit! They had me at no word limit. I’ve learned so much during the lockdown. Probably more than the rest of the 15 years of my life. I wonder what I can write!