From video bombing to household chitter-chatter during official calls, WFH’s really fun!
It’s been over three months since our homes became our new workplaces and the end still seems like a distant dream to this unforeseen situation. I still remember that night when Modiji went live on TV at 8 o’clock and how we all listened to the great orator with rapt attention, fear engulfing our hearts as he carefully chose his words to describe how our days to come were to unfold. And what followed was unlike anything anyone of us had ever imagined. The world outside went quiet as we locked ourselves in our homes and waited for things to get normal.
While all of this was totally new to us, another new thing that happened due to the nationwide lockdown was that our homes became our new workplace and the boundaries of our work and personal lives got blurred. Our couches became our new work desks, our beds our classrooms. PJs replaced my neatly pressed clothes and two months down the line (after the lockdown was partially lifted, of course) I went shopping for more PJs. And now that it has been three months, I look back and feel how surreal it has all been. It took us time to realise what was happening, and by the time we made sense of this unimagined world we had become part of, a lot had changed.
Today, with a saner mind, I feel the work from home model toppled many things in our lives, including our daily routines. Binge watching way past midnight seems so much more tempting than getting up to the alarm in the morning. To this add all the ghar ka kaam, khana banana, sharing your work space with your family, keeping things clean and tidy, juggling between Zoom calls and a demanding toddler, sometimes makes me want run back to office. If and whenever we get back to college, I would never come back complaining about how hectic the day was.
But one thing this pandemic has surely done is brought us all closer to each other. We might still be locked in our respective homes, but we never ever knew the home versions of each other, which has been made possible thanks to all the early morning video calls. That I am cooking three meals a day to my husband doing the jhaadu-pocha never were part of an official discussion, which they are now. And it is absolutely okay if my kid video bombs my official calls. People are more understanding about it. It has surely made us connect on a more human level, on a more personal level which couldn’t have been possible if it was not for this pandemic. While I am definitely not thankful for a lot of things this horrible situation has brought to our pretty and wonderful world, I am hugely thankful that it has made me more sensitive towards the plight of others. It has made me understand that life more often than not, is not what we presume it to be. The frills of life we find ourselves running after perpetually are only the silver vark that the Indian sweets, mithai, have on the top. The real pleasure lies in the mithai itself. I guess we now know better than ever before how we want to live our lives. The ambitions have changed, so has the reality.
Honey Panchal, Assistant Professor, School of Communication Design, Unitedworld Institute of Design (UID)
Disclaimer: The opinions / views expressed in this article are solely of the author in his / her individual capacity. They do not purport to reflect the opinions and/or views of the College and/or University or its members.