Lockdown Luncheons at home has become a thing of the past. Back at work and with the new special Covid Concerns on our consciences, trips to the corporate kitchen has been banned.
Yes, no facilities, fridge, kettle, microwave oven. A host of safety measures have been enforced, rightfully so, to prevent the spread of the virus. The impact of the corona crisis has been highlighted by the official communiques.
Corona contentment is over with the easing of the Lockdown to Level 4 which brought a staggered staff surrender to work. Hello policed enforced distancing, no socializing or light-hearted banter for that matter, wide-spread isolation and a quarantine of sorts in compartmentalized cubicles ordained by the newly corona cognizant committee converts. Staff dare not voice their corona complaints as compliance is the new norm, given the dearth of new work and high unemployment rates.
As part of the construction and design industry, most of the government departments are still not at work, with the rapidly crumbling construction sector as a Level 3. No labourers on site yet = no business meetings, except for those zoom conference meetings.
Which makes for a very quiet office. Until you reach for a Kelloggs Cereal Bar, the crinkling cacophony of the packaging piercing the silence, heralding the break of the fast and the first foray into snacking.
Attempts to work are hampered by the claustrophobic mask and spectacles which seems to fog up with every exhalation. Even the Managing Director is not exempted. Who would have thought that heavy breathing would have become legal at work? Fogging up the lenses indeed!
At least two hours have passed… Time for another treat.
What?! No! Only a mere half an hour has trickled past. Sigh.
Time to lament the loss of leisure trips as the mind and body is still operating on the lockdown snacking clock.
Gone are the ready snacks, refreshments and home-made meals and treats. What is worse, even the savoured cup of chai has been withheld. As we enter winter, aircons pumping at full speed, the hours until lunch has to be suffered, hunger pangs literally pinching. What is worse, is that the knowledge, that lockdown is here to stay for months, rumour has it until September that all the levels have eased or back to the severe Level 5, should the covid cases continue to escalate. As it is, the reality is, that one needs to now conform to the new culture to flatten our rapidly climbing curve.
On to curves of another kind… The prolonged lack of amenities means an advantage for the summer bodies, which they say are made in winter!
Still, at work, I remember my convenient kitchen comforts, and I sigh…
Banana Bread…with bananas fresh out of the garden
Access to the library with a cup of chai
Breakfasts in front of the telly or in the library
Vegetable breyani with freshly cut garden veggies, split pea soup and a salad on the side
Eggs sunny side up
An egg curry with potatoes and fresh peas
Vegetable breyani, eggs sunny side up, tantalizing curried egg, potatoes and fresh peas
Lockdown Leave and no braai/barbeque? Impossible!
Margerita pizza from scratch with basil from the garden
Samoosas, a firm South African favourite and a pizza made from scratch
The joys of pickling, tasting and snacking, kumquat and lime pickles
Thankfully the weekend approaches and there is a collective sigh of relief from the team, its been a short but long week,