Chiku’s lockdown Diaries chapter # 1- Chinu’s haircut

The living room was full of noise. The news reporter aunty was presenting a report on something called “Coronavirus” in a very grim and tensed tone. I was finishing my homework and preparing for my class test scheduled the next day. My birthday was approaching in a few days and it was coincidental with my last test date. My parents suddenly started discussing about this new word “lockdown” and I was confused what is this so scary being discussed. Mom laid out the dinner table and we all assembled to eat. The TV was switched off and there was a sudden silence. The eerie silence was making me nervous and the food on my plate was suddenly tasting awful.

I asked my dad what was the news report all about? My dad said that the Coronavirus was a dangerous virus which has caused havoc in the entire world and people are getting infected with it. We can keep the virus at bay by following personal hygiene measures like washing hands etc. but our little bit of carelessness can expose us to probable infection. He also said that the virus was spreading everywhere at a very rapid pace. To control the spread, the government has declared a lockdown all over the country. I was scared to understand this heavy word-lockdown. I asked him what is this all about? He said lockdown can be simply put as “Stay home, stay safe” which means do not leave your house to prevent getting infected and avoid being an unknown carrier of the virus. By doing this we are controlling the spread of the infection. Lockdown also means that people will not be allowed to step out of the house but can do so in case of extreme urgency. I thought, “Wow! This is going to be a new way of spending your day.” My mom’s phone beeped. She had received a message from my school. The class tests were postponed and the school will be closed till further notice. So, there will be no school from tomorrow. I was so happy and started making a mental plan for my birthday celebration. My mom immediately judged my mental happiness and said, “Chiku, eat your food, lockdown is for the world not for your studies. From tomorrow we will have a plan for your studies and some other things to do.” I started sulking, finished my dinner and pushed off to sleep.

The next day, the morning was very calm and quite. The joggers park next to our society was closed for the lockdown period. I woke up with some unusual energy to face the first lockdown day. I saw dad relaxing on the couch and reading the news online . In some time , he will be getting ready to work from home. Mom was trimming the rose plant and sipping hot tea in the balcony. Nobody seemed to be in a hurry to rush out of the house. I went to the bedroom, saw my four-year-old cute brother, Chinu.He was in such a deep sleep and completely unaware of the world around him.. He was an adorable child. Chinu had lovely soft hair. But he had not been to the salon for quite some time. My mom came and cuddled me and said, “This is something very unusual that we are going to encounter in the days to come. But let’s make the most of it, positively.” I smiled and said, “I know you will make me study.” She smiled and said, “Let’s start our lockdown with something interesting. How about giving Chinu a haircut?” I said, “How? We can’t take him to the salon!” My mom grinned and said, “Don’t worry mommies have a solution for all the problems. They are very good in making hay while sun shines.” Chinu got up with barely opened eyes. He looked around and cuddled mom. He always got up with a smile. Sometimes I feel he knows everything that is discussed or talked about. It felt as if he knew what lockdown is and as If he was so ready for mom giving him a haircut.

Mom got Chinu’s teeth brushed and hugged him and said, “Chinu, you surely need a haircut. So today, we all will give you a haircut and you just enjoy the royal treatment that will be given to you at home while you are having a haircut .You don’t have to go to the salon and there will be no salon uncle to scare you. It will be just your folks, your mom will give you a haircut, dad will hold you so that we can trim your hair correctly and your brother will pep you up so that you don’t get nervous.” Chinu was very petrified. He said, “Muma, I am scared. What if you cut my ear? I will never be able to hear.” Everybody was in splits of laughter and got ready for the first episode of the lockdown day. Dad made Chinu sit on his lap. Mom got the scissors, did some estimation of locks and side locks and started sliding the scissor through my little brothers’ hair. I was wonderfully admiring my brother for his patience and ” no fear looks” for such a new experience. In approximately thirty minutes , Chinu’s haircut was done and he was looking so adorable. We all praised mom for her effort and thus, the first day of the lockdown began with a very great note.

Lockdowns are not bad; they got my tired parents together. My dad was working from home. He was not sweltering in the traffic. In fact he was helping mom in cleaning up the house. My mom though she worked from home otherwise could also take our studies when we were in good spirits and not when we needed pleading to sit with our books.  She was happy cooking delicacies and in all this I thanked Chinu for being such a wonderful brave kid to be the first one to get his haircut done at home without even shedding a tear. We were all safe and together what more do want in such testing times. So, this was my first day’s account and lots of lessons learnt. I know I will learn and do lots more because this will be one of its kind “Stay at home ” where  all your near and dear ones will be home managing their jobs and responsibilities and enjoying each other’s company too.
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