Our ‘Dosti 24×7’ WhatsApp group at all times had as a lot site visitors because the highway exterior our housing advanced. Now as the road will get silenced, the group is getting noisier. It has turn out to be a extra important lifeline than the hyperlocal hawkers and outlets which supplied every little thing, from Aloo (or ‘avacoda’), Beauty therapies and Computer sundries to Xerox, Y-fronts and Zippers. Our WhatsApp group was no slouch both in its array of companies. It was mother-in-law and saheli, a provider of prompt treatments, recipes and reassurance, a Lost & Found, Yellow Pages and OLX. But ever since The Virus modified life as we had identified it, so has our WhatsApp. It has mutated unrecognisably – identical to the best way we as soon as used to work, play, stay; eat, pray, love.
Till corona rained on its parade, our rainbow WhatsApp messages have been ‘Phone no. of Sonu veggie-wala’; ‘Gym is open?, ‘Any Maalishwali is in building?’, ‘Need Bandwala/ Batman/ Bhootnath outfit for 6-year-old’; even one early morning plea from a determined mum for ‘six peacock feathers pleeease’ (by the way, equipped inside seconds). Or there’d be a frantic SOS to find ‘a Peppa Pig water-bottle lost in podium garden’; oftimes the lacking child himself. Or appeals for kitchen cures for toddler toothache, adolescent zits, Babuji’s bronchitis …
Now that viral obsession has contaminated each waking second, how may our ‘Dosti 24×7’ self-isolate from the contagion? Corona has staled its infinite selection. Its former, a number of outreach is right down to a one-point agenda. Like journalism’s classical components of 5Ws+1H, our WhatsApp group solely posts the Who, What, Where, When, Why of the wolf at our door, and How to remain protected plus adequately stocked on dal, chawal, sanitisers – and wafers, that nice consolation meals when the chips are down.
Coronavirus has united our housing advanced. And divided its Whatsappers into clear-cut classes. The Rapid Action Force, first responders to any want, expressed or pre-empted. (And ‘those who only stand and wait’ for another person to volunteer.) The ‘I Agree’ military which instantly endorses/ applauds each posted suggestion. The Enlightening Epidemiologists, prompt informers of each stage of unfold (generally faux). And, inevitably, the Terrible Trio of Rumour-spreaders, Doomsayers and Panicreators. As you’ll be able to see, we’re absolutely ready with our inhouse Whats-apparatus.
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Alec Smart mentioned: “Locked-down is better than Knocked-down.”
DISCLAIMER : This article is meant to deliver a smile to your face. Any connection to occasions and characters in actual life is coincidental.