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When life hits pause

With the March 22 Janta Curfew now extended for another three days, in an effort to keep COVID-19 at bay, Goans, confined to the indoors, are discovering the joys of slowing down and bonding with family. NT BUZZ reports

Danuska Da Gama | NT BUZZ

Who doesn’t love lazy Sundays? However, March 22 will be remembered as a lazy Sunday with a difference, given the government order to observe Janta Curfew in a bid to contain the spread of COVID-19. This meant that Indians all over the country, barring those working in the essential services sector were confined to their homes from 7 a. m. to 9 p.m.

And with the curfew now being extended to March 25 with a few tweaks, many people while happy to their part to avoid the spread of virus, have also been able to find time to do some of the things that they hadn’t had time for before.

“This curfew, a blessing in disguise, served as my most wanted and awaited alone time. It has been a journey of self reflection, of de-stressing and self love during this time. More so, I’ve been working on my mental health – something we all fail to do on a daily basis. And while the curfew was on Sunday and was then extended, I partially went into self isolation a few days before the curfew.”

Ruth Costa, teacher,

“The extended Janta curfew will help reduce the risk of pandemic that has engulfed the world. I am doing my part as a responsible citizen of India. Every loss due to the virus in various countries makes me realise that life is unpredictable. This realisation has made me spend more time with my loved ones in these two days. Meanwhile I have carried important work at home which will enable me to be with my family and join in the curfew as well. It was a very patriotic feeling to join in the mass acknowledgement of the other professionals and personnel who are out there on the field irrespective of caste, religion and sacrificing their family time so that we could be safe in our homes with our families. Let’s fight this together as one community.”

Irfan Agha,
advocate, Panaji

“I’ve stayed at home before, but this time it actually felt like being in a cage. I have never experienced anything thing like this before. However, despite the irritation of being confined at home it did not force me to step out of the house. I gave my best to support the Janta Curfew as I believe it is really important for each and everyone to self quarantine and take precautionary measures.

However, I do not like to waste my time and since I am otherwise busy at the bar I run at Calangute beach, and hardly get time to spend with my family, this was an overdose of quality time where we played housie, sequence, FIFA 20 on the PlayStation, and several indoor games. It also got me to start cleaning the house which was a long pending task assigned to me. And since my wife is busy with her craft work, I helped her with decoupage, washed my cars and bike and enjoyed this time at home, which is otherwise not possible due to the hectic life and routine we follow.”

– Nevis Coutinho,
entrepreneur, Saligao

“Staying at home is not something I do every day; but it was kind of fun to be kept at home. For me, it was more of an adventure than a curfew. Before the curfew the thought of staying home for one whole day got me frustrated and worked up and I actually thought I would lose my mind. But as the day progressed, and the curfew extended, it seems okay. I spent some valuable time with my parents and siblings, helped in household chores which surprised my mother and surprisingly made me happy. I think more than a restriction, it has been a wonderful experience.”

Rohan Pinto,
businessman, Aldona

“After the hectic work schedule, staying at home was a dream come true. Also, it has given me a good feeling knowing that I am doing my bit to help India and people be safe from this deadly virus. It is also nice to have the family around where you just get time to bond knowing there’s no work, or pressure or burden, and to catch up on all the time missed and make up for it. So at home we first had a deep clean session, which was followed by the mass liturgy disseminated by priests to be said at home. Besides, food and games, it’s also been a time to relax.”

– Shweta Sequeira,
designer, Porvorim

“Being at home for Janta curfew on March 22, and now till 25th March, is to do more with spending time with family, praying the rosary to call out to God to spare us this pandemic. On Sunday there was a feast at home, as I cooked a lot of food and now, I’m relaxing.”

Claudia D’Souza,
assistant professor, Utorda

“I was happy to experience the Goa that my grandparents spoke about. I actually heard birds chirping, the rusting of leaves and silence on the roads, it looks like everything has slowed down and people are bonding with their family. At the same time, it struck me that health is important and that situations can change and no amount of planning works.”

Rekha Sawant,
student, Margao

“On Sunday, I woke up late, made some fancy breakfast that the family ate at lunch time, and had a long siesta time. It was fun to go out at 5 p.m. and clap for all those hardworking health workers. Since, a family member was exempted of curfew due to work reasons, I accompanied her to get a few errands done, buy milk, and some supplies for home. It was fun to see the empty roads, but people queued up outside shops that opened for a while to buy milk and essential commodities. This time, allowed me to slow down a bit, but it has been irritating to see people around me complain about how they miss work and can’t sit idle and do nothing.”

Sushant Coelho, engineer, Mapusa

“We were prepared for this and I knew this was coming soon. Spending time with my little ones and family, playing and relaxing has been the routine for the last few days now. The ambience around us is now serene, with birds chirping and barely any traffic- something which has become a luxury now. It has reminded me of our good old childhood days. These days have been excellent time for family bonding. I also believe that Mother Earth is recovering from the damage we humans have caused.”

Emera Remedious,
home entrepreneur, Pilerne

“Since Janta curfew was on a Sunday, it didn’t make much of a difference – Sundays are meant for relaxation – not that one works too hard on other days but on Sundays, one can officially be lazy. This was also the day when one had to responsibly stay indoors –the self-isolation and lockdown is the best thing to do – many advanced and first world countries are doing it now after cow dung has already hit the ceiling.  Times like these also help to put things in perspective and make you reflect – like why I overtook the guy in a hurry while driving or why was I so restless at the traffic signal when I was late for a movie. This is a good time to catch up on movies at home – a good part of the Sunday was spent watching the Sherlock Holmes teleserial starring Jeremy Brett, who is the quintessential Holmes. Watching it again for the Nth time actually made me feel far more intelligent than my lowly IQ suggests. “I am the most incurably lazy devil that ever stood in shoe leather” as Holmes says in ‘A Study in
Scarlet’, reflecting my sentiment during these times.”

– Sachin Chatte,
cine enthusiast, Porvorim

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