Three years ago, we went into lockdown in Mumbai, India. It seems like it was only yesterday. No, we haven’t forgotten about our ten-month lockdown in the hotel. We continue to be grateful it wasn’t any longer than it was. We made the best of it as a couple, working our way through it without any disharmony or negativism.
The hardest part of those ten long months was the food and the laundry. Washing all of our clothes by hand was tedious, especially since we both like to wear jeans. But, we chose to alternate with two pairs of jeans each since it would take three days for them to dry on the window sill after washing them in the shower.
We washed our underwear every day, but those, too, took days to dry. I wore the same three shirts repeatedly, washing one every other day. We didn’t sweat while in air conditioning day and night. After it was over, we kept the jeans, but I tossed the shirts. I didn’t want to see them ever again, even though they held up well.
We placed a bath towel at the bottom of the closet and hung some of our wet clothes in there. We never unpacked our suitcases. What was the point? We had everything out of them that we wore, and toiletries, which were difficult to replace from the hotel room when we ran out. Luckily, there’s an Amazon in India from which we could buy some of the items we needed, such as shampoo, deodorant, and toothpaste.
They’d deliver the boxed items from Amazon to security at the hotel entrance, where they’d spray the boxes with disinfectant and then bring them up to our room to set them on the little table outside our door. We were told not to open them for three days since there may still be germs on the outside of the cardboard boxes.
As for the food, which we wrote about in many posts, it wasn’t good. Tom doesn’t like Indian spices or sauce, so he ate Chicken Penne Pasta every night for the first eight months. He gained 10 kg, 22 pounds, and finally gave up eating dinner altogether for the last two months.
Instead, he’d ordered a massive breakfast with four bananas, four hard-boiled eggs, four pieces of toast with jelly, and piles of bacon, the only pork item on the menu. He’d save some breakfast in the evening, such as two boiled eggs and a few bananas. That worked for him.
I ate a normal-sized breakfast of eggs and bacon. At dinner, I ordered grilled chicken breast with sauteed vegetables one night and salmon with sauteed vegetables the next night. I like Indian food, but I cannot have all the dishes laden with starch and sugar.
It wasn’t easy. At times, we longed for some type of snack, more due to boredom than hunger, but they didn’t have anything we’d eat. Plus, with my limited way of eating, snacks aren’t easy to figure out without a kitchen to do the necessary prep for low-carb items.
Fortunately, we were allowed to walk the corridors to get some exercise, or else we’d have been sitting all the time. I walked 8 km, 5 miles daily, while Tom did the stairs. I got a tooth abscess while we were there and was treated by an online dentist who never charged me for the help. I got antibiotics without a prescription, ordered through a pharmacy that delivered them to the front desk, on two occasions when they returned a few months later. Once we got to South Africa, I had the tooth pulled. It was a wisdom tooth, so there was no significant loss.
Obviously, like all of you, we learned a lot about ourselves during that stressful time. Our true colors came out under those harsh conditions. In our cases, we felt we became more tolerant and adaptive from that trying situations, and we have no regrets. Besides, it’s a great story to share when we’re with others, and they, too, share their lockdown experience. Who would have thought we’d all go through such an unbelievable experience?
In essence, it shaped us in more ways than we can describe. Sadly, many lost loved ones or experienced the ravages of the virus, some of whom still suffer today. I know this from personal experience as I am currently on more medication to treat the lingering effects.
Today, we’re off to a house party, bringing our dinner and drinks. Last night, we had a fantastic time at Jabula with Louise and Danie, with whom we always love sharing social time. With their busy schedules, it’s always a treat to be socializing with this fantastic couple whom we both adore.
Have a great Sunday, and be well.
Photo from one year ago today, March 2, 2022: