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Thursday, August 27, 2020

Chp 829. Mizoram Local Body Election 2020

Today, Mizoram went to polls despite the ongoing CoVid-19 pandemic. After much consideration and deliberation, our State Election Commission finally decided to go ahead with the planned election.

All Local Body elections within AMC (Aizawl Municipal Council) are known as the Local Council elections, and the ones outside AMC are known as the Village Council elections. There are 80+ Local Councils and 500+ Village Councils in Mizoram. These Local Council and Village Council elections are equivalent to the Gram Panchayats election elsewhere in India.

Other than the three Autonomous Districts of Mizoram (CADC, LADC and MADC) that have their own separate Village Council election dates, and a few localities across Mizoram that had been declared a containment zone due to community spread of CoVid-19, the rest of us went to exercise our franchise today.

Today was also the first time in my life that I voted in Mizoram!

Nine months ago, when I finally packed up all my belongings to move back to Mizoram permanently, a part of me was sad to leave behind 30 years of life outside Mizoram. But at the same time I was excited too, because I was going to see and do a lot of new stuff that I had never done before. One of those things I was really looking forward to was to finally cast my vote in Mizoram!

Of course, back then I never knew CoVid-19 would be lurking around the corner, rearing its ugly head out to change everything for everybody. This was definitely not the "first time voting in Mizoram" experience that I had in mind. But still, I went and voted today.

Here are 10 points that I have observed about our Local Council election today:

1. No campaign rule.

Candidates weren't allowed to have campaign rallies or even door-to-door campaign because of the ongoing pandemic. Hence people made use of social media and everything was done in a healthy and mature manner.

2. Minimal advertisements.

There were very few political advertisements. On my entire walk from my house to the polling booth, I saw only just these three banners belonging to the three political parties fighting for seats in my locality.

Very subtle and simple election banner, no hyped-up promises or gaudy rhetoric, just a direct display of who the candidates of each party were, along with a one-line selling point.

Of course it needs to be stated here that, being a small and close knitted society, almost everybody in our locality already knew who these candidates were, and so there was no need to introduce them or write about their qualifications etc.

3. Safety first!

In my locality, people had to vote in batches. Time slots were allotted for different age groups. As for me, I belonged to the 12 noon - 2:30 PM batch, which was for those between 30 and 44 years of age, while my mom and nieces were in different batches. I went to the polling booth with my sister and cousins.

There were also a couple of rules we had to follow, like wearing a mask, carrying our own pen and hand sanitizers, maintaining social distancing at all times, and only people from the same household were allowed to share an umbrella or water bottle.

4. Lack of security.

During my entire stay at the polling station today, I saw just ONE police officer! He was like walking around here and there, and then I never saw him again. No other cops were in sight, which was soooo different from any election I had experienced in Delhi, Mumbai and Pune. People weren't going to make any trouble, which was obvious. This is an epitome of peaceful election.

A little further away from the polling venue, there were three makeshift counters constructed by the ZPM, MNF and Congress party workers. I saw them displaying their party flags on their respective counters, and I think they were on sale or given to anybody who wanted them, I don't know as I didn't stop to ask or take photos. But one thing I did see was the party members going over from their counter to the opposition's counter and laughing and teasing each other. You will never find such camaraderie between different political parties in India like you do in Mizoram. What bliss!

5. Election watchdog.

Even though there weren't any police around, the election watchdog MPF was right there, setting up a booth directly opposite the polling station gate.

The MPF, which stands for Mizo People's Forum, is a neutral NGO body that oversees all elections in Mizoram. They are all volunteers, made up of different Church leaders along with YMA leaders and prominent senior citizens, and they make sure that the political party members aren't "fighting dirty" during election campaigns, and all elections are conducted smoothly and fairly etc.

One such example of their work would be about the transportation of people to the polling booth. Earlier, for example, if you supported Congress but had some problem like a fractured leg or other disability that prevented you from voting, then the Congress party would arrange your transportation to the polling booth. The MPF found such practices unfair, especially for those parties or independent candidates who may not have the financial resources to arrange such transportations, and so that practice was banned, and now the MPF instead arranges ALL transportation for such citizens with disabilities to the polling booth, regardless of whom they're going to vote for.

As we stood in line, MPF members were continuously running around, making people sit in an orderly fashion while we waited for our turn. Other MPF members were taking down names and phone numbers of all the voters for contact tracing in case somebody among the crowd is diagnosed with CoVid-19 later. Another MPF member was repeatedly announcing on the mic about how many people we should each vote for, how to fold the ballot paper, what are the ways in which your vote will be disqualified, and so on.

6. Meeting friends!

It was only at the polling station that I realized I haven't seen most of my friends in a very long time! With all the lockdowns and curfews going on, it was really great to see many of my friends again, even if half their faces were hidden behind masks. We shook hands in the air without coming in contact with each other, while others gave each other air-fistbumps.

Here's tlangval Johnson, looking tired from waiting.

No longer tlangval Sanga, with tlangval again Tluanga.

No longer tlangval Adam, with nula again Mary.

Rumour has it that both the tlangval again and nula again above went to cast a secret ballot, which has nothing to do with today's election, if you know what I mean :D

7. Waiting in line.

Chairs were kept far apart from each other as people waited for their turn to vote inside the polling booth. Here's one such photo I took of our Chaltlang polling venue.

In the above pic, you can see the back row people standing. They're actually not standing in queue, they were getting up to shift to the next empty seat. And that's how everybody proceeded, from one chair to the next chair until you reach the polling booth.

But then I saw a sign that said, "Using mobile phone is prohibited" and so this was the last photo I took with my phone.

After this, I kept my phone in my pocket. I mean, there was nobody around to enforce this rule, I could very well continue playing with my phone and taking pics, but that's the Mizo way of life we had all been brought up with. We just follow the rules, no questions asked.

Here are some images sent by my friends on WhatsApp of their poll waiting area. I love how everybody maintained enough distance between each other.

8. The Polling booth.

Finally, my turn came and I walked inside the polling booth. All MPF volunteers were now replaced by the actual State government Election employees. Just like everybody else, MPF members were also not allowed inside, except to cast their vote.

To the first officer sitting behind a desk, I mentioned my electoral ID number, to which she quickly found my details on a list, and then after verifying my Election ID card, she allowed me to proceed.

The second officer applied that dark ink thingie on my left index finger. Every time she applied, she would dispose the stick and use a new one for the next person. Very hygienic indeed. Also, I realized, right at that time, I hadn't actually cast my vote yet but I was already marked as someone who had voted. I was actually an illegal voter right then! Come to think of it, all of us were at that point. :P :P

The third officer turned out to be my friend and classmate from JJ School "M" (I'm not sure if I'm allowed to disclose the name of election employees, lolz.) Small world indeed. "M" gave me the ballot papers and instructions on how to stamp the seal on the candidates while I waited for the booth to be empty.

Once the booth was empty, I excitedly stepped inside, quickly selected my seven candidates, stamped them while using a tissue paper to hold the seal, folded the ballot papers as instructed, inserted them in a box, applied hand sanitizer on my hands and then walked outside, straight to home. I must admit, that feeling was a bit underwhelming.

I mean, since it was the first time I was casting my vote in Mizoram, I was maybe expecting some heavenly music to suddenly play in the background, you know, Steve Vai riffing it up while Dave Lombardo beats a kickass rhythm on the drums, with thunder and lightning adorning my surroundings, or something like that :D Instead, it was kinda "meh". Quite an anti-climax.

Fellow blogger Muantea managed to take my pic as I left the polling station though, lolz. Sly people everywhere :D

9. Party no bar.

Correct me if I'm wrong (as this was my first Local Council voting experience), but I think people don't really care about the political party when it comes to Local Council elections. I had been asking my relatives and close friends for the past few days about whom they're planning to vote for, and they always told me a mix of candidates across different party lines.

And the candidates they were planning to vote for were usually hard working people who cared about the people, whom you could rely on. It really didn't matter which party they belonged to. Out of the 7 people we were supposed to vote for today, my vote went to 3 candidates from Congress, 2 from MNF and 2 from ZPM (uuurrmmm, am I allowed to disclose that? Please let me know).

I heard that the State Assembly elections on the other hand are more closely affiliated to political parties and party manifesto etc. Do let me know if I got all that right.

10. Citizen's Pride.

Last but not the least, as underwhelming as my first voting experience was, I now feel this great sense of pride and responsibility for going out to exercise my franchise today.

A pessimist may argue, "How does your one vote matter, chances of you becoming the deciding vote is extremely rare, you're just a speck of dust in a vast ocean of sand". True, but the same argument can be made for any other vote as well. Might as well just give up on democracy and have an autocratic leader then?

Though I came very late in the picture, I'm mighty glad I had an opportunity to cast my vote today. And I hope I was able to interest you about my experiences today. The polling results will be out by tonight, so I'll end this post for now. Thank you for taking your time to read till this. Cheers everyone. :)

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Chp 828. Online Payment

For the past 2-3 years, whenever I come home to Mizoram for a brief vacation, I would tell my friends and family about the wonders of technology back in Pune, about how my life had completely changed because of the e-wallet and UPI system.

I no longer had to go to an ATM for the umpteenth time to withdraw cash because almost everybody in my life (back in Pune) accepted one form of online payment or the other.

Electric bill? Online payment.
Monthly rent? Online transfer.
Grocery shopping? Sodexo card.
Zomato and Swiggy orders? Debit card.
Wine Shop? Credit card.

And that’s not all. All my transportation apps like Uber and Ola were loaded with prepaid wallets. And even when I do take an auto-rickshaw not affiliated with any of these service providers, I could always pay him by PayTM or GPay.

Right from my local barber to roadside tea stall vendor and even the paani-puri wala, everybody had one of those UPI apps - PayTM, GPay, PhonePe, Freecharge etc. I need to call an electrician or plumber to my house but I'm low on cash? No problem, I can pay them using one of those apps. Maid's salary? GPay it. Watchman's Diwali bonus? PayTM it. Office group contribution for a colleague's birthday party? WhatsAppPay it. Traffic violation? Cop already has a card swipe machine to pay the fine! :D There was even that popular joke about beggars going around begging for money with a QR Code :D

Now, all those cashless transactions had made life much more simple and seamless for me back in Pune. And with today's ongoing pandemic, it is of utmost importance to follow such practices because the virus is known to spread through physical cash contact as well.

Which is why I am so happy to observe that almost everybody here in my locality Chaltlang is using GPay or PayTM since the outbreak of this pandemic. Maybe it's the fear of CoVid-19 that had pushed people to resort to this, but a lot of my neighbours and shopkeepers now have this e-payment option.

It made me think, "Finally!" you know, we have caught up with the rest of the world.

Except, we haven't actually. This is one of those moments when we are almost there, but not quite.

You see, even though all the shopkeepers in my locality have UPI payment options now, I still can't use them because... I don't have freaking mobile data! :D

Yeah, my phone says "4G", which is a big joke. 4G, my ass. Even at full 4G signal (courtesy my beloved Vodafone service provider), I can't even load Twitter or Facebook most of the time. Every time I complained, I was told that such and such a tower is currently under maintenance blah blah blah.

I am on Vodafone's "RED International" subscription plan (their second most expensive post-paid plan) with 200 GB monthly data at 10 Mbps, among many other perks, and if you see my data usage as of tonight, you'll see that even though this month is about to end soon, I was able to use up just 3 GB so far, lolz.

That's how bad the data network is over here in Chaltlang.

And so, after I buy all the stuff I need from the shops near my house, since I can't make the payment due to network issue, I run back to my house, connect my phone to our WiFi, and then only make the payment through GPay from there, lolz!

I mean, in a way, yeah, it has served its purpose, no cash was exchanged between me and the vendors, but I can only do this with the shopkeepers around my house who know me personally. Since I have been outside Mizoram my entire life, most of the people in my locality don't know who I am, and so this "I'll make the transfer as soon as I reach home" technique won't work.

Pretty useless, naw?

This kinda reminds me of our famous traffic light at Dawrpui.

The traffic signal is just lying there. Whether it is showing red or green or orange, nobody cares, it has absolutely no effect on traffic because everybody runs or stops depending on the signal given by the traffic police posted there. :D :D :D

Yeah, next time you're feeling quite useless, think of this traffic signal or my online payment apps, that might cheer you up. :D :P

I guess sometimes not all technological advancement is as useful as it's supposed to be when external factors affect it. I need an actual 4G, a proper 4G, in order to utilize these UPI apps properly. Without that, it is pretty much useless. But still, yeah, I am extremely delighted that most vendors in my locality are now adapting to this cashless transfer process.

Until my mobile network improves, I guess I'll just have to bear this pain. Online payment? More like... online painment.

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Chp 827. 4 Days Lockdown

Today is the last day of the "4 days Aizawl lockdown". Will it be extended? Probably. Probably not too. I'm at that stage where I've lowered all my physical and emotional shields, ready to accept whatever announcement is made by those who are in charge.

At least the past four days of lockdown had been quite… colorful and diverse.  From a sunny hot day to a mist filled frigid day and even a thunderstorm day, and now back to a hot, humid day again! Yeah, hard to believe we saw all these extremes of climate in just a span of four days!

It's kinda like God was just sitting up there on His throne, bored, and then one of his angels rushed into the Great Hall, shouting excitedly, "Sire, sire, the good people of Mizoram, you know, those funny people who once thought salt was going to go extinct and so they stockpiled on sacks of salt enough to last them 50 years each, yeah those same people, well, they just declared a four days lockdown!"

And God was like, "Oh My Self, you sure about this?"

The angel was like, "Yup, I'm pretty sure, I'm there in one of their WhatsApp groups."

"But why?" God asked.

"Well," the angel explained, "It's quite entertaining to see the daily debates taking place between the Pro-Trump fans and the Anti-Trump fans."

"Ahhh," God said, "so these people are going to be in lockdown for four straight days?"


God sat contemplatively for a moment and replied with a hmmm.


The angel interrupted, "Yes, they sing a lot of hymns too."

"Heh? What? No, nooo, that's not what I meant. I was just… never mind. So I'm thinking, since these people had been following the social distancing rules very obediently, let me put on a little show for them during the next four days," God said.

"Like?" the angel asked curiously.

"You'll see," God replied with a smile.

And so, during these four days of lockdown, we saw all different possible weather :) I even took out our heater from the store-room two days ago because it was freezing cold! And today, I am not even wearing a shirt as I write this blog because it is bloody hot!

I've been taking a photo of the view from my balcony every morning for the past four days, holding a lock in the foreground. And you will see such a contrast in all the photos!

17th August 2020: Day 1 Lockdown.

18th August 2020: Day 2 Lockdown.

 19th August 2020: Day 3 Lockdown.

20th August 2020: Day 4 Lockdown.

See, so much contrast in the weather. The only thing missing now is a snow blizzard :D

Oh by the way, in the above images, I am holding a lock to indicate a lockdown. I am not trying to advertise and sell a lock. :D :P

Depending on how you look at it, a lock can be a symbol of being held in captivity, of being imprisoned and our freedom brutally snatched away. Or, you can be more positive and consider the lock as a symbol of security and safety, of our very survival under protection. See, being positive is good, except of course when it comes to CoVid-19. :P

I'm really happy a lot of my friends had taken up on my TV show suggestions for these four days of lockdown. It's the little things like this that encourages me to keep blogging.

To end this short post, here is a picture of our dear Snowy. He's also under the lockdown of his blanket. :)

Ahhh what a life to live. Nothing else to do the whole day, except sleep, eat and poop. Just like me. :D

Monday, August 17, 2020

Chp 826. 4 Shows 4 Lockdowns

Hello, my friend, welcome back to the world of Total Lockdown. :D

With a sudden spike of over 60 positive cases detected in Mizoram yesterday, there was an emergency meeting held late last night between various Ministers, CS, Department heads, ZMC heads and other NGO heads, and we're now back to four days of Total Lockdown in Aizawl.

None of us are strangers to a Total Lockdown by now, and many of us continued to minimize social interactions and avoided going out even after the lockdown in Mizoram was officially lifted months ago, but still, you can't ignore that eerie feeling of a mandatory lockdown.

Well, to help you cope through these four days of Total Lockdown in Aizawl, here are four Netflix (India) TV shows that I really recommend you watch.

Now before I start, let me tell you that these TV shows are not popular, at least among our Mizo community (or as we say in Mizo - "a common lo"). I'm basing this hypothesis based on what I have seen at various Mizo social groups and forums, and I haven't seen anybody talk about these particular shows yet, so if you have already seen them before, I apologize in advance.

They're not any of the shows that most of us Mizos have watched on Netflix, the popular ones, like Breaking Bad, Suits, Blacklist, Sherlock, Peaky Blinders, Money Heist, Narcos, Mindhunters etc. But they are all abso-freaking-lutely amazing and definitely worth binge-watching. And so, without further wasting your time (because you have to binge-watch them all), here are my four selected Netflix shows for this Lockdown period:

1. Line of Duty

Duration: 5 seasons, 6 episodes each.
IMDB rating: 8.6
Rotten Tomatoes: 98%

Line of Duty is a British show about an Anti-Corruption Unit within the police department, and how they tried to take down corrupt police officers. The beauty of this show is that unlike other police TV shows where the cops put on their hero capes and go guns blazing and shoot down all the bad guys, in this show, most of the action takes place inside the office, during interrogations. :)

Yeah, you're probably thinking that's boring, right? Wrong. It is bloody suspenseful. And the script has been written extremely well. You'll come across a lot of new abbreviations you're not familiar with, like DC, DS, DI, AFO, TFC, UCO, ETC. :P but it is written in such a way that you'll soon be familiar with what the abbreviations stand for. The show also has a lot of realistic police protocols, bureaucratic red-tapes and organization politics, something that most of us can relate to.

The actors and acting are superb, and you'll be sitting at the edge of your seat throughout the entire seasons. The only negative thing about this show is that the latest season (season 5) released last year, is not there on Netflix. Netflix apparently lost the license to stream the latest season, and so you'll find it on BBC One (BBC iPlayer), or from your trusted torrent site :D :P

2. Shetland

Duration: 5 seasons, 6 episodes each.
IMDB rating: 8.1
Rotten Tomatoes: 91%

Shetland is a Scottish show about a Detective Inspector and his team who investigate crimes in a small group of islands called Shetland. The beauty of this show is that I can relate it so much with our Mizo community because it takes place within a small close-knitted society like ours where everybody knows each other types.

In the first season, each case went on for two episodes each, but from season 2 onwards, a case takes up an entire season. Apart from the well written dialogues and script, the scenery is just breathtakingly beautiful. It makes me so want to visit the place one day, maybe after this CoVid-19 pandemic is over.

You might want to watch it with subtitles on because it is a little bit difficult to catch some of the heavy Scottish accent. It is quite educational for me too to learn a lot of common Scottish words, like "cannae" instead of "cannot", or "da moarn" for "tomorrow", or even a complete sentence like "I dinnae ken were the wee fellow be" which means "I don't know where the little guy is" :D

3. Fauda

Duration: 3 seasons, 12 episodes each.
IMDB rating: 8.2
Rotten Tomatoes: 100%

Fauda is an Israeli show about an elite branch of the IDF (Israel Defense Force) specializing in operating undercover among the Palestinians and their attempts to infiltrate Hamas and prevent attacks on Israel. Fauda means "Chaos" in Arabic, and the entire show is in Hebrew and Arabic.

To me, the show is as badass as "Narcos", so yeah, I was a bit surprised most of my friends here in Mizoram have never even heard of this show. It is definitely worth binge-watching, though you'll have to watch it with an open mind. The show has been heavily criticized by many Palestinians and Israelis alike, accusing it of being too soft on either sides. But then again, that is not surprising because of the ongoing conflict between the two states.

I think what I like the best about the show is how the main "action heroes" are all just normal ordinary people, you know, they're fat or old, they aren't good looking and they seem to be out of shape too. The kinda people you and I can relate to, lolz. So, do give this show a try, you won't regret it, it gives you a good glimpse into the current situation of that region.

4. Rake

Duration: 5 seasons, 8 episodes each.
IMDB rating: 8.6
Rotten Tomatoes: 68%

Rake is an Australian show about a corrupt criminal lawyer called Cleaver Greene. He is your typical badboy, always getting into trouble and delivering great humour punches. Cleaver is my new favourite antihero (though the show is a bit old and I only discovered it recently).

An antihero is the main character in a show who does things the opposite of what a conventional hero does, you know, being goody goody all the time and stuff. Some of my favourite antihero characters are Dr. Gregory House from "House", Dexter from "Dexter", Vic from "The Shield", Walter from "Breaking Bad", Jax from "Sons of Anarchy", Don Draper from "Mad Men", Michael Scofield from "Prison Break", Raymond Reddington from "Blacklist" and of course Tony freaking Soprano from "The Sopranos". Good to have Cleaver join this list.

What I like the best about this show is how most of the cases are quite controversial. Cleaver has to defend the mob, a cannibal, a bigamist, a far-right racist, a whistleblower, a sociopath and so on, and they are usually guilty of the crime they are accused of. And he also frequently ends up losing his case, making it very different from most of the legal TV shows out there where the main characters always win at the end of the episode.

Just a warning though, there are a few episodes with sex and nudity, so this is not a show to watch with your family, lolz. Other than that, it is all good. There is an American version of this show, which from the reviews, utterly flopped. Everybody talked about how it is of no match to the original Australian version.

And so, I'll end my post with this. I hope this post was helpful to you. I have covered a British show, a Scottish show, an Israeli show and an Australian show. I do have a few other great shows I would like to recommend to you but they are not on Netflix, so maybe I'll talk about those later.

Hope you spend your 4 days of lockdown enjoying these 4 shows. Until my next blog update then, cheers.

Saturday, August 08, 2020

Chp 825. Coping with Age & Backaches

So the other day, I climbed a mountain and broke my back. It was my first... Brokeback mountain moment. :P

Yeah, I was using a walker for weeks.

Jokes aside, I was indeed using a walker for a couple of weeks because I sprained my back due to heavy lifting.

After a Total Lockdown of almost 3 months, our family was running on our very last gas cylinder and we were starting to panic a bit! And so when our YMA announced that it was our turn to get gas, we were overjoyed.

For my non-Mizo visitors, let me tell you that in Mizoram, most of the people depend on the local government for gas supply. In my locality Chaltlang, our YMA is in charge of gas distribution, but in other localities, the Local Council can be in charge of it as well. The YMA (or LC) usually has a designated distributor who supplies gas for a particular locality at a subsidized rate. And yes we have other private companies too, but they are more expensive.

Now, to prevent people from crowding up at the gas distribution center and creating long queues, each locality is further divided into different sections, and each section has its own "distribution point" where the supply truck stops to distribute the gas. This ensures that people don't have to walk very far to exchange gas cylinders.

Every resident has their own gas passbook with a unique serial number for each gas cylinder, and then an announcement is made by the YMA (via WhatsApp group and loud speakers) that people of ABC section with serial numbers from XXX to XYZ can now come to collect gas.

For large households with more than one gas connection (hence multiple passbooks) their passbook serial numbers are usually in sequential order so that they fall under the same bracket when such announcements are made. While making the announcement, the YMA also mentions the cost of each gas cylinder (which fluctuates a bit now and then) and people are asked to bring the exact change with them.

And so that was how I ended up exchanging three gas cylinders that day.

I mean, I admit, I am no Superman. I didn't carry those three gas cylinders with my bare hands while sweating and oozing out macho manly testosterones. No. I pushed the cylinders in a makeshift trolley. :D At the distribution point, my niece went to settle the bill with the YMA volunteers, and once they put a stamp on all three passbooks, I placed the three new gas cylinders on the trolley and pushed it back to our house.

At home, it was during the time I was putting the new gas cylinders inside our store-room that my back problem occurred. As I was trying to make space arranging the items inside our congested store-room, I happened to lift two cylinders at the same time, no idea why I was in such a hurry, and then my back suddenly went "phraacckk"!

Aaaargh I had never felt such excruciating pain in my life (except maybe the time I dropped my hard-disk and it broke into pieces). I immediately fell down to the floor, sprawling in pain, with a little bit of drama and flair of course.

I mean, I am no stranger to physical injuries. I had played a lot of sports back in school and college, especially basketball. I had fractured by left wrist as well as both ankles, requiring surgeries, not to mention the multiple sprains and ligament tears on my limbs, neck and back. It was something I had to live with for a couple of weeks, adjusting to the situation like limping for a few weeks or using my right hand to wash my bum :D :P, until it healed eventually.

But this one was different.

I couldn't walk at all, couldn't sit down properly, and worst of all, couldn't sleep. No matter what position I was sleeping in, I was in deep pain.

Fortunately for me, when we rushed me to the clinic, turned out, it wasn't very serious, as in, I wasn't crippled for life. The doctor prescribed a lot of painkillers along with thyroid meds etc.

My back was in such bad shape that I was even prescribed "Pregarest" which is apparently a pregnancy related medicine, but since I'm 40 years old now, the chances of be becoming pregnant was quite low. :D :P

I suffered for the next 2-3 weeks. Even while lying down, I wasn't comfortable in any position, and when I was finally able to fall asleep (thanks to the painkillers), I would wake up in pain in the middle of the night if I had changed position involuntarily. A part of me was thinking if this was what the rest of my life was going to be like...

I mean, I was already feeling pretty useless after returning home to Mizoram, you know, now that I am no longer doing the two things I was getting paid to do - advertising and designing games, my two professional skills. But to become an "invalid" on top of that made me feel even worse.

But I just suffered silently, and I exercised daily by walking around the house using a walker.

After around a month, I was finally able to walk properly again. Soon, my walker was starting to get in the way of my regular life, you know, like how it was really difficult to climb a tree to pluck mangoes while using a walker...

To conclude, this is definitely a rude awakening to let me know that I am no longer that fit and young person I once was. Back when I first started writing this blog 16 years ago, lifting two full gas cylinders would have been a cakewalk. A walk in the park. Now it is "a walk in the park, and then across the park, until you reach the clinic".

NKOTB once sang "Age is just a number", and I now realize the number they're talking about is the number of times you'll suffer from backaches and body pain after lifting something heavy. Ahhh, what a revelation it had been.

So until my next post then, cheers everyone.

Stay safe.