Hyderabad: Ab tu ghar railway ki bogi ki tarha lagne laga hai; toilet jakar aao aur wapis apni seat par baith jao (Now the home has started looking like a railway bogy; go to toilet, come away and sit down on your seat.)
This statement bespoken by Hyderabadis masks despondency during the 16 days gone by in lockdown.
The city which bustled with traffic from early morning until late night now dons a deserted look. The hidden desire for “every day should be like a Sunday” has come true for many, only to leave a trail of boredom in its wake.
The children locked up in their homes restricted to indoor games, the young glued to their phones more than ever before and the man who was never home or returned late — all have been reduced to being inmates of a prison which in fact is their abode.
Social gatherings enlivened by cigarettes and alcohol have become luxuries rather than a regular affair, a hobby, a happy time pass, for all those who were used that lifestyle.
Woman seeking household help is futile as she has to make do without a maid and a cook. She has to take care of the daily grind and attend to the needs of the eldest to the youngest personally. Mothers, instead of enjoy rest during the lockdown, are found busier in their kitchens.
With restaurants rendered inactive, a mother, a wife or a daughter is seen working like medical personnel on emergency duties.
Mothers have begun to see the messy homes which used to cleaned up by the maid. Now they are realizing how much their children and grandchildren have been piling up work on the domestic help.
Mother-in-law, on the other hand, seems to have learnt to remain silent over everything she earlier looked as deliberate mischief. No more complaints or barking orders to the sons who have begun to behave crankily.
With no news about the annual examinations, it has become reason for the children to enjoy life by resorting to every possible indoor game. Teenagers who have had no idea about the carrom boards are forced to learn the game and PlayStations are always occupied by one or the other sibling.
The young bloggers have become more active online and engaging with the known and the unknown alike. On the other hand the Hyderabadi culture centric-pages on all social media platforms are regularly churning out content to keep everybody busy.
Some women are however managing to spare time to watch online cooking shows and to surf to find new ideas.
In the meantime, several memes and Tiktok videos are flooding the net. Social media has basically turned into more of a show and tell platform than it already was. People are broadcasting to each other how they are spending their lockdown hours by counting holes in the sieve, picks in the holder, measuring the walls in the house and counting pomegranate seeds and etc.
The girls and boys whose wedding have been postponed owing to the spread of corona are cursing the virus. Couldn’t it have appeared some other time? They are asking.
But there is no news from the government. It looks like boredom is set to continue for longer days.