Sitting in my balcony, as I looked outside at the sprawling green Chembur Golf Course( also known as BPGC), I realised I hadn’t sat here in a long time. Stuck in a daily routine, I had failed to notice the beauty of nature. Monsoon has arrived, bringing with it a relief not just from hot summer but also a welcome drop in humidity. The Earth has burst into shades of green.
I am saluted by the cacophony of parakeets, who fly into BPGC to settle down for the night. The lone Kingfisher is flitting from branch to branch. A pair of Mynahs peered at me hopefully from one of the higher perches, as I dunked my pakodas into mint chutney. The aroma of hot bhajias wafting out of each home and ealichiwali masala chai on this rainy day is laden with an indescribable feeling of joy.
The outside world still in a state of freeze due to pandemic, has now slowly begun to thaw, but people are are still isolating. It felt strange in the beginning, but we are getting used to this new life. Year 2020, a year where we lived in complete isolation, brought out our biggest strenght of Adaptability. In the beginning it was tough but I have learned to adapt to the new life of isolation and have restructured life within the walls of my home like many others around me.
Pandemic has taught me, how in a fast paced life, I had failed to notice the little nuances that I now miss the most. Impromptu visit to Manis for a filter coffee with friends or Sunday visit with family to Chota Saroj. Evening walks were an excuse to stop by at Jhama for a quick snack of pani puri and joy I got from getting that extra puri or masala paani. Little did I know that I would miss the runs to Sahakari Bhandar at station to pick up groceries or my weekly visit to Chembur camp for buying fresh vegetables. I didnt have to worry about standing or walking in crowds or about washing my hands everytime I touched something. A five day Ganesh Chaturthi festival was the time that brought the whole society together to watch performances by children and adults. we relished the chinese food from the stall that was put up in the society and not once worried about the hygiene. Oh! how I miss that fried rice and manchurian.
A simple ‘Hello’ from the neighbour or simply standing at the entrance of the house and chatting with them, an exchange of ‘Welcome’ and ‘Thank You’ with the casheir at Starbucks, bargaining for discount with a tradesman. These are the small things that i miss the most.
Life has again slowly started to inch back to normal. But it may not be the same for a long time. But Pandemic has taught me to be grateful for what I have and not complain about what I dont have. To be thankful to my family and friends who on various zoom sessions through out the lockdown have made me laugh through this tough period, my colleagues who have helped me through my transition to work from home. It has taught me the joy of a short vistis to the grocery store, or a short visit with a friend for a quick coffee.
The little things we took for granted are hard to come by today.