There is a bloodstain on my ceiling. The one left after killing a mosquito. It is like a careless brushstroke. The brush wanders and the paint fades. When the brush is rotated a little, the paper catches the paint on the other side of the brush and the trail continues but broken. The stain almost resembles a hammerhead worm. I stand on a chair to take a closer look. Maybe it’s not blood. The red is too vivid. It’s paint. I wish to go back in time and witness the exact moment when this smudge was made. I would also like to see the moment when the Coronavirus first entered a human body. It must have been a small, seemingly ordinary event.
Recently I moved to a new place. It’s the first time I am having a place of my own. With lockdowns looming ahead I thought it was best to set up the kitchen as soon as possible. One of the tabs in my browser was dedicated to pressure cooker research. There is so much to learn about them. It is made from different materials – Aluminium, Stainless steel and there is a hard-anodized one. There are inner and outer lids. Aluminium is a slightly better conductor of heat. Stainless steel is expensive but lasts longer. How long should my pressure cooker last? 5 years? 10 years? Where will I be in 10 years? Will I be in the same city, doing the same things? Will I be carrying my cooker everywhere I go, packing it in cardboard boxes and loading it in trucks? I am not the person with just two suitcases anymore. Now I come with loads of cardboard boxes and a mattress. Finally, I bought a stainless steel cooker with an inner lid. After unboxing I admired it for 10 minutes. It was shiny.
After moving to the new place I realised, earlier whenever I was at home I have had too many clothes on me. I can do with a lot less. Maybe, none at all. When I get bored, I get up from my desk and stand in front of the mirror. New veins have popped near my temple. There is a growing patch of dry skin near my stomach. The ribs show through. “Look at your bony chest. Don’t you eat!” – my grandmother used to tell.
My room has large windows on three sides. It becomes bright in the afternoons. The clothes which are hung for drying flutter on faraway terraces.
Some evenings I lie on the bed. The light fades outside and it’s dark. Neither asleep nor fully awake, I am somewhere in between. I don’t want to get up and switch on the light. I continue lying on the bed.