“Nights and days are not very different since the lockdown happened. Shops supplying essential items open for four hours in the morning. Then, it is as bleak as you are seeing it now,” the cabbie was acting as a tourist guide,“BTW, Sir, what brings you to this place in these times? You will be quarantined for two weeks.”
“I am a writer, and have come here to complete my book. So, the quarantine doesn’t matter. I don’t intend to step out.”
“Ohhkk! Nice to meet you, Sir! If you need something, you can call me. Arrangements can be made.”
“How come you are working in these times?”
“Many of us have come back from metro cities to our hometown. I don’t have to pay rent here, but need money for subsistence.”
“Are you getting enough business?”
“Not much from driving. I provide residents with whatever they need. I bought a smartphone for my wife with my savings, and she teaches online.”
We had reached the destination.
“I will call you.”
He thanked me with a broad smile, shared his number and left, happy with the tip.
I was getting insights into how remote townships were shaping up in the lockdown. I could not bring myself to tell him that I’ve been laid off from my day job, and am here to cut the cost of living.