Hot Takes

During shelter-in-place, I realized that there are certain things that I am starting to appreciate (of course, recognizing my privilege) which are:

  • Regular baking and cooking schedule
  • Not missing large gatherings of people—why did I think that I enjoy those large crowds of people???
  • Traveling. As someone who flew across the world for various purposes, the ache of traveling is something that still stays with me. Beyond the glossy photos of food and sights, I cannot unremember the lack of sleep, the uncomfortable beds, the long traveling times, and potentially in the future, visa issues. But I do the miss the discovery of new foods and the serendipity of new experiences
  • Not missing small talk at all. Every communication now is intentional! For a very valid purpose. So I don’t want to revert to a world where I have to do aimless conversation at a party where I am really just there to see the host!
  • Ability to escape parties by a click of a button than negotiating complicated social graces
  • The fact that socialization can still work with small groups. Look how I turned out!
  • Today marks the 125th day

    Since I was last in the office. Since technically shelter in place started for me in effect when work mandated that everyone across the company work from home.

    I remember distinctly how it felt then. I was angry at the people who were congregating in small spaces. I had a cold or a flu (but not covid) and was acutely aware of how I was going to be perceived by others. I was annoyed at everyone. I was also annoyed at myself for catching something.

    But I was thinking that it was going to be temporary.

    In fact, that Thursday, I left around 6 pm as I noticed coworkers saying to each other, “I guess that I’ll see you next month!”

    I had been pulled into some intense meetings earlier that day, missing the initial company-wide announcement. It wasn’t a choice I wanted to make. And so when I stepped out of those intense meetings, I felt like…something was different. But I gathered as much of my personal things as possible and went home.

    And then it was wfh then.

    And then things got bigger. There were moments of light. Then it became dark again.

    I settled in a routine. Happy with things. But then filled with a certain kind of existential dread. What does this means for my future? What does this mean for the plans that now won’t pan out? What does this mean for everyone I know? What does this mean for the people I hope to know? What does mean?

    In some way, most of my goals in life can now be accomplished digitally. I have done almost many things that required to be in person whether it’s travel or being public. But what about all the opportunities that could have been there?

    Sadly, it’s not like the apocalypse in books. Society though…hasn’t crumbled. Society is still hanging by a thread. But is this the beginning of the end? Stories always jump to the good part. The aftermath and how people deal. But what happens during? What happens as we all suffer together? What happens as society crumbles very slowly. A crumb after another. When we finally look up, we notice that it is an avalanche that has fallen and society is not what we remembered.