The lockdown period was not all about staying cooped up for me. If you have read my previous two posts, you will also know that we took some initiates to help people in need during the pandemic. But it was also a fun time, learning new things and new ways to keep in touch.
I am big on meeting family, so missed my visits to my parents the most. I would visit them at least twice a week. The last year, for the first time in 43 years I spent my birthday apart from them and could not visit them for 4 months at a stretch. Though my dad is on WhatsApp, he was not comfortable making calls. So after a month or so, I taught him to use the WhatsApp Video Call feature and things got a little better after that as at least I could see them even if could not physically meet them.
Similarly, we also had 2 landmark Birthday celebrations – two of my cousins turned 60 & 50 respectively and two landmark Silver Jubilee Wedding Anniversaries. We had two weddings and one engagement. All of which we attended and enjoyed on Zoom Video Calls. Though we sorely missed dressing up in Kanjeevarams for such occasions, this was a new experience too of connecting and sharing the joy via the internet. This also allowed many older relatives and their caretaker relatives to enjoy in the same way as others without feeling that they were missing out as they would normally do as wouldn’t be able to attend a function. Here too, I turned teacher for my father (role reversals 🙂 ) and taught him to install Zoom and connect to calls. I also bought them a tripod selfie stick which made it easier to log in and stay on these calls which going about other duties.
With friends too, digital was the way of life. We are a group of 13 girls who would catch up pretty often as we live in the same apartment complex. Of course, over the years many have moved away to different cities and countries. But the rest would catch up often. This was sorely missed by all. With many feeling like they did not have time for themselves with other family members at home 24×7, we decided to try an online Housie which was a great hit. We would normally play Housie when we met but people in other cities could not participate. This one allowed all to participate. I conducted the Housie on WhatsApp messages and money was collected & distributed digitally. We did this once every week for nearly 2 months and had a lot of fun!
We girls had initially bonded through Dance Classes and we decided to do a fun video on the popular song Kudi Nu Nachne De. Each of us shot our parts individually and it was edited and put together. That was a fun experience too, even for me who has two left feet and can’t dance to save my life 🙂 .
I also attended many online classes. Some were for cooking/baking, some to enhance my work-related skills while others were to satisfy my artistic cravings. I did many decoupage projects to give a new look. Many smaller craft projects were created as gifts to friends and family. Of course, I spent a great deal of time reading as well. My garden too shows the results of the extra hours put in as it is now lush and green!
I also became a pet parent for the 2nd time with the arrival of my naughty Dalmatian – Smokey Ponday. Though I was a pet parent earlier too to Scotty, I had missed out on the puppy phase as I was petrified of dogs then. Click here if you want to read about my journey with Scotty. This was a new experience and Smokey ensured that he kept me on my toes and constantly entertained with his antics. From vet visits to the need for cuddling & love, training, change in food routines, and proudly sharing videos of him with friends & family – my life has changed for the better with him in it. Puppy experiences with him also led me to blog about many things to help new pet parents or prospective ones, as the last 2 years have seen unprecedented growth in pet parents.
These are some of my fond memories of the last two years when life was not what we are normally used to. What are the things that brought you joy and made life a little better during the pandemic? Do connect with me through the comments below.