Same old, same new

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (The more things change, the more they remain the same)

Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr

As things open up and people start commuting back to work, my work times have begun to get back to the usual nine to five. There’s little opportunity now to finish most of my day’s work in a five hour stretch in the morning and then go for a walk. As a result I find that the last time I was out for a stroll in the middle of the day was in late August. I’ve been posting on and off about the great ferment in small businesses: many have shut, others have changed from one business to another. A corner restaurant that I used to duck into for an occasional cup of tea has shuttered down, as you can see in the featured photo.

The Family has a favourite fruit vendor. As she chatted with him, I looked at the small but elaborate Jain temple next to the street market he sits in. Religious places are set to open soon, but at the end of August its doors were still firmly shut. All around it business seemed to be on as usual. When I said this to The Family, she gave me The Look. “Don’t you remember how crowded this place used to be in the afternoons?” I don’t any longer, but I can imagine that when people again have unrestricted access to the suburban trains, the crowds here will double.

The market began to fill up by sundown. Many people are still fully masked, but sights like the one above are not uncommon. Mumbai claims to have given one shot of the vaccine to almost all residents, and both shots to a rapidly increasing fraction. In January when I saw scenes like this I was afraid (correctly, as it unfortunately turned out) that we would have a new wave of infections soon. This time, I see this and hope that it signals a return to normal. At least, as long as a new mutant of the virus does not begin to spread.

By I. J. Khanewala

I travel on work. When that gets too tiring then I relax by travelling for holidays. The holidays are pretty hectic, so I need to unwind by getting back home. But that means work.

12 comments

      1. I know, and I feel a bit guilty that the UK isn’t sharing as widely as it should. But that’s not something I can change, and the sooner we can get fully on top of it through our own vaccination programme, the sooner we can start to share properly – I hope!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. The word “crowded” has a new meaning, or at least a new feel. I was in a diner today that was crowded. It was maybe half full. In years past, I would have waited 5-10 minutes to get a seat and not thought that was bad. I do hope things are heading in the right direction for us all. Thanks for joining us at Thursday Doors. I always enjoy seeing a slice of life from your corner of the world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Things are hard to predict, specially the future. Still, the chances of a major wave, rather than sporadic infections, has decreased with widespread vaccinations. Of course, there could always be a mutant which defeats our expectations.

      Liked by 1 person

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