My kitchen clock no longer tells the time. Since I do not have spare battery cells, it will be out of work for a while. I do not need it though, it has been rendered redundant by the lockdown.
I measure time differently now. I take roughly ten Kishore Kumar songs to whip up a balanced breakfast. Peppy Geeta Dutt numbers to do the morning dishes. About eight of them. Chopping vegetables and cleaning the greens is dreary work and deserves an hour of stand up, my current favourite being Dave Chappelle. A Ghulam Ali ghazal is long enough to prepare a one pot lunch and the Beatles keep me company as I cursorily dust the knick knacks around the house. Just ‘Hey Jude’ and I am done with the dusting. But when I sweep and swab, and if I do it well, I cross Abbey Road.
Hemant Kumar rounds up my day. His songs, maudlin, or mischievous, or melancholic, fit into my winding down. They address my moods in existential ways and I hum with him as I switch off the kitchen lights.
Time, then, has become melody and poetry and laughter. Anger and anguish and sadness. I measure it carefully, for I feel it deeply. Like my kitchen clock, it appears to stand still, but like the tide, it waits for no one.
About the author
Sarita Talwai is a full-time reader, part-time writer, and a reluctant homemaker in Bangalore.
BWW COVID-19 Chronicles
Our writers examine what it is to live in today’s new reality. With COVID-19 cases increasing across the globe and nearly all of us relegated to an online world for our work, social interaction, and news, we opine on what’s changing in our worlds and realities.