Quarantine times: Dream sequence only

Sun on the face. Ras malai in the mouth. Sky in the sky

April 18, 2020 04:03 pm | Updated 10:28 pm IST

Respected Madam/ Sir,

What is Mr. Mathrubootham doing during Corona house arrest? You are thinking this only no? How this old man is managing? No yoga class. No ras malai. No friends group evening tiffin. No evening walks. No irritating Dr. Shankaramenon for entertainment purposes. Nothing nothing nothing. How he is managing?

Madam/ Sir, shall I tell you?

For first one week managing means cleaning and cleaning and cleaning. Husband and wife is cleaning whole house once, then once more, then three times. Then after that sofa set itself is crying with tears in eyes, as if Rohini Hattangadi in mother role, and saying please stop this torture, how many times you will hit cushion in the balcony again and again as if police station.

Then one week nonstop fighting in the house. Sometimes Mrs. Mathrubootham will say something stupid and I will get angry and say something, then she will be angry. Then I will apologise and we will watch some nice DVD and relax. Other times I will say something stupid and Mrs. M will get angry, then rest of the day I will relax in balcony. Including meals.

Then after that?

After that Madam/ Sir, your friend Mr. Mathrubootham is sitting at home whole day and seeing dreams and dreams of outside world. I am thinking one day lockdown will finish and then I am able to go to market. In my mind, market is like Black Thunder Water Park. Vegetable shop. Aha wonderful. Grocery shop. Oho beautiful. Walking on the road day and night no issues. I will sit in the living room and imagine. How it will be to sit in Ganga Sweets?

Thrills are coming in the body. First, I will put pant and shirt. Then I will put shoes. Then I will wear mask. Open the door. Slow motion scene only. I will step outside door. Whether any policeman is stopping? Never. Then I will get into the lift. Other people are inside. They are also wearing mask. We will say hello and hi as if youths going to nightclub. Then I will step out on the road. And walk with swinging hands. Sun is in the sky. Clouds are below the sun. Birds are below that flying. Autorickshaw fellows are driving nearby and they are waving and saying hello! I am also waving.

From nearby fruit shop smell of banana is coming. Aha. Oho. Suddenly sunlight is hitting on the face. In the distance I can see Ganga Sweets. It is coming. It is getting closer and closer. I can almost touch the door handle. And then ecstasy of all ecstasies my hand is touching door handle as if Arjun is kissing Manisha Koirala in Muthalvan song. My hand is pushing the door open. Wind from air-conditioner is blowing in my face. I am walking inside like the lady in Head and Shoulders advertisement. Employees are all smiling under mask.

I walk towards the table and sit. Still slow-motion only. (Madam/ Sir, everything is in slow-motion till further notice.)

Then, inside the glass cabinet, I can see one thousand ras malais. Waiter is bringing and bringing and bringing. I am holding the spoon in one hand. Through the window, sunlight is coming and hitting me on the face. Autorickshaws are coming and going. Sky is blue. Birds are singing.

Sun on the face. Ras malai in the mouth. Sky in the sky.

What more Mr. Mathrubootham will do during quarantine. These days Madam/ Sir, this is how I am passing the time. Fully dream scene only.

Yours in total imagination,

J. Mathrubootham

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