Musings on the lockdown days

Nanda Kumar

17th Apr, 2020

Who would have even imagined that we will be locked down to save not just individual lives but also of the community? But yes, we were dealt this hand by the cruel turn of events that unfolded on COVID 19 – the most dreaded word in the global vocabulary these days.

What a black swan event this has been. Globally all governments are well equipped – meaning armed both with physical arms and ammunition, extending to nuclear weapons even and, not just these – they are ever ready with diplomatic strategies as well to counter threats. What use are these weapons and strategies for destroying the dreaded WMDs – Weapons of Mass Destruction to deal with COVID19. This has proved to be the most dangerous weapon if one were to classify that as one. As it is said, it is very tough to fight an enemy within and an invisible enemy.

Well, we have one lurking at our doorstep or shall we say right under our nose and we have no other choice but to lock ourselves down. Lockdown or not, we should keep the spirits soaring high to not just lift ourselves, our teams at work and our families at home, but also to respect the lives of our neighbors, service providers and the essential services teams that are staying awake to help us fight this and tide over the crisis.

How are we, Addverbians doing? Well not too bad I should say.

The teams at work are energized to keep the morale high and, be as productive and innovative as one could get under these trying times. Addverb’s tribe is rearing to contribute to the wellbeing of society by staying engaged with some of our customers that are operating their warehouses to keep the essential supplies going as mandated. We have even put our AMR to great use to serve the noble cause at a Govt. hospital in Noida to deliver samples, supplies, and essentials to patients in wards without exposing personnel to the risk of contracting the virus. Back in their homes, each member is contributing to the betterment of – a) the society – by following the detailed protocol of lockdown as mandated, b) Ourselves and our families to be responsible members, and c) last but not least to continue to contribute to the company by continuing to work but remotely and training ourselves by gainfully employing and enjoying our time.

How am I doing? Well, again not too bad.

I should say I had a few days of acclimatization to handle and get over the initial resistance to adapt. I got entrapped by watching too much TV on this epidemic and, well and truly the infodemic (the word used these days for the information on the epidemic) hit me. I spent a couple of sleepless nights being overanxious about this as we have two ultra-senior citizens at home – my Mother who is all of 88 and my Mother-in-law who is in early nineties to care for. My thoughts were mainly about what if scenarios. I worked hard to overcome this anxiety. Did I do the right things – thankfully, the answer is – Yes. How did I overcome this? By the tried and tested method of calming the nerves by accepting that I am nobody in the larger scheme of things and have no control on the events that are unfolding. Our best defence is to accept things that we cannot control and stop worrying about them. Gain confidence about the power of collective good that will eventually win over evil forces. I resorted to meditation that I was doing on and off. I am regular at that now. Most importantly, my wife and I chalked out a disciplined schedule. Despite missing out on our regular walks that we would have outside, we decided that we will use the space on our balcony and terrace to good use for walking. So much so, we are clocking a good number – about 5 to 6 Kms everyday by walking at home. A key takeaway for me is, my wife has taken to walking seriously now as prior to COVID 19 she was a very unwilling walker even though she is a yoga buff. Now we are very regular with both walking and Yoga. We are tending to the elders as we should be doing to keep them charged up. We are having good food thanks to variety of dishes being cooked by my wife collaborating with her 92-year-old Mother. Aren’t we blessed and lucky? We also take particular care to share whatever little we can – food, money and such with the service providers – the lady that sweeps our road everyday even in these times, our gardener who drops by occasionally out of love for his job and the plants he tends, and anyone else that contributes to our wellbeing.  I miss my swimming though.

It is so nice to really hear and enjoy the birds chirping as they have also regained their lost space as we have of our balcony. We do not have the unending stream of automobiles racing with their horns blaring all the time. All these nice things are visible and available for us to enjoy. I hear lots of music – classical genre. The ones which I would not have watched otherwise are the Frankfurt and New York philharmonic concerts. What a treat they were. In times like these art gains over many other things and performing arts will give a new sense of high.

Well you must have thought it is all play and no work. No not really – I am engaging as per the need to be active on the professional front to contribute to Addverb in my own way. I read a good lot of reports and articles both technical and managerial in nature and share with my colleagues via the right forums. I blogged on a few topics, participated in a few conference calls with potential customers to keep the flame simmering. I am available to contribute to Addverb in any which way in these troubled times. Keep going team.

Let me close this by quoting a nice one by Owen Arthur – a politician from Barbados:

“For he who has health has hope; and he who has hope, has everything”.

Covid 19 Lockdown Stay home Stay Safe Technology

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