We’ve learnt the hard way that the virus is more macrobe than microbe. We have bowed to it, reverentially chanting ‘Coronamaha – namaha’. Even those who dismissed Patanjali’s ancient science as ‘yogarbage’ began practising its mindful-breathing kriyas as if their life depended on it. It did. Alas, far too often, Covid’s deathly stranglehold made ‘pranayama’ more about ‘Yama’ than ‘prana’. Now, although no one will dare boast that we have achieved the victorious ujjayi breath, we are being allowed to slowwwly exhale. Ignore that adverb, and plunge into adversity again.
Unlocking is happening differently in different states, and at different levels within them. Baby steps are needed, not reckless swag. As the saying goes, ‘Covidiots rush in where antibodies fear to tread.’ So while we inch towards the forgotten normalcy, we must not let down our guard or our masks. Remember we haven’t yet washed our hands of the virus. And Covidji never keeps a ‘do gaj ki doori’. He luvves parties.
So let’s look at the Dos and Don’ts for the places which were closed for so long, and which are now, opening up. Phew! Actually, go easy on that. Too many ‘Phews!’ could throw us back into curfews.
Malls. Online shopping was both saviour and safety-valve during lockdown, but we all know that it simply couldn’t provide the multiple experiences of the real thing. Just as teens don’t go to college only to study, or not even that, we don’t go to these plate-glass paradises, these consumerist Mt Kailashes only to shop, or just window-shop. But watch it. Malls are even bigger maulers of pandemic control than of self-control.
Gyms. Yes, these months have made us feel as if we’d never ‘get off the treadmill’. Here too, please follow the distancing rules. The wait is worth its weight in gold. Don’t be a dumb-belle or dumber dude. Exercise caution. Abs-olutely.
Salons. Yes, again, the pandemic has been a very long bad hair day – literally as well. Those lockdown locks might be as grey as a monsoon day, but follow the Covid protocolour.
Restaurants. As with all the above social hotspots, the tragedy is that it’s not only the violator who gets his just desserts. His whole family and social circle land in the soup. After that concentric circles get stewed.
Beaches. Before you splash out, remember there’s always the next wave.
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Alec Smart said: “Get vaccinated. Don’t chicken out on the tika.”
This article is intended to bring a smile to your face. Any connection to events and characters in real life is coincidental.
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