What to do when you have to be home

Friday March 20 2020
man at work

Remember the shelf which has been leaning at an angle since last January? PHOTO | SHUTTERSTOCK


Hasn't this been one of those weeks for the memory books, in Kenya? We'd heard about coronavirus and it was one of those general conversations that you have with people until the first case was confirmed and then the second and then the third. Now, it's a reality that we have to contend with. I saw it first hand earlier on in the weekend when I went shopping and saw trolleys full of tissue paper and sanitizers. There was a late 30s Kikuyu gentleman in front of me, who for this conversation I will refer to as Mbugua, who had 10 packs of tissue paper. Each pack holds 10 rolls, so that's 1,000 rolls in total! Do people realise that tissue paper doesn't take the place of basic hygiene? Did Mbugua realise that he only has two hands and one bum?

Anyway the next couple of weeks will be a test for many of us. For the people privileged enough to work from home, it will be pretty long. Going to work is one of those things you hate until you can't go to work—then you wish you could go.

I've been trying to figure out what I'm going to do for the next few weeks since I can't work from the open office I work from and I thought of four nifty ideas which I'll share here today.

1. Get to know your wives/ girlfriends

You've been busy month and after month but now you have a chance to talk to them since you're going to be with each other for a while. You also won't be seeing your office wife or university girlfriend for a few weeks so it's best to get to know your housemate who also doubles up as your children's guardian.

What does she like to eat? What's her second name? What does she do in her spare time? Let's call this love in the age of Corona. A province in China recorded an increase in divorce applications after the lockdown.


2. Learn a new skill

Since you'll be bored in the house because you're not going to be able to party and the only people you will see often will be your little broke, unemployed friends you also call your children, it's a great time to learn a new skill. The internet age has given rise to amazing e-learning sites including EDdX and Udemy where you can learn everything from finance to how to tell if a hyena is male or female.

3. Do those projects you've been putting off

You know that bulb mama Jayden has been asking you to change since last October? Remember the shelf which has been leaning at an angle since last January? Or the Rasberry Pi project you had promised to start? You have a lot of time to do that now and it can be a family project which would make for really fun memories. I know that I have a palette project waiting for me and this is the perfect motivation (avoiding death by boredom) to pull it off.

4. Catch up with everyone you've been planning to call for the past year.

One of the things no one prepared me for when I started working was the sheer amount of effort needed to maintain friendships. Either, I'm away for work or they are or family events happen or their dogs die. Which makes it harder to meet up with them.

I can't wait for things to get better though. My social life and my weeping wallet both rely on it.