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Old 9th April 2020, 09:51   #106
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

I have finally started to come to terms with lockdown and now have a set routine for weekdays at least.
- Wake up
- Go to the society gate for picking up newspaper
- Enjoy the cool breeze in balcony and read something with bird chirping in the background
- Login to work and get stuff done
- Help wife with lunch/dinner prep and dishes
- Enjoy the hues of the evening sky and star gazing at night

That thing about habits forming in 21 days might be true, and heck it seems I might even miss the lockdown. Already started dreading the day when I am again stuck in traffic jams, star gazing becomes a distant dream and bird chirping gets replaced with cacophony of our bustling lives.
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Old 9th April 2020, 20:23   #107
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

The nature of my work is such that I always work from my laptop from wherever I am, and there is always an infinite amount of work to do. Thus, during this lockdown, not only that I don't really get any additional free time, I find myself working even more than the regular times, since I am always on my laptop and there is hardly any distraction now.

Finally, to break the routine of round the clock, non-stop work, and to give my brain some new exercises and my mind some new thoughts, I went back to my old but life-long hobby - chess! (The other hobby that fits this description is of course driving my cars, but that is definitely out of question now).

So here I am, analyzing some old classic games and solving some puzzles, in addition to a few blitz games on the internet every now and then.

Here, sharing a screenshot of my analysis session (using my old Fritz 14 software) of a famous Anand-Kasparov game from 1991.

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-chessanalysis.jpg

Last edited by Dr.AD : 9th April 2020 at 20:32.
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Old 9th April 2020, 20:33   #108
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Trying to browse through TBHP for long term ownerships / modifications / meet threads.

I think I've literally read 1000's of threads (not necessarily during lockdown) already, and wish I can find more posts about older generation cars, like early 2000's models, or stuff related to German sedans (I totally dig these).
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Old 9th April 2020, 21:25   #109
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

Well I spend time dressing and do self photo session in my house. How extra is that? Since I did alot of shoot today, I had a great nap after lunch. After which I woke up and grabbed my vaccum cleaner.

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-20200409_174250.jpg
The torture began with the Seltos

Both my cars are covered in dust and I dint bother cleaning them cause after a couple of days it would be back to square. (A mild wipe is all I preferred doing)

I realized that I had been skipping my sx4 vacuuming since 2018 due to college rush everyday and I had no time. Today removed all the mats of the car. Discovered the amount of dirt collected in a year. Cleaned them properly, no stains. Washed all the mats and the floor area. I also vacuumed and cleaned all the bottle holders and other areas where dust usually sits. My car is always clean, it's always the floor where I used to skip.

I did the first floor cleaning of the Seltos and realised that the front driver seat was filthy and the rear left. (I haven't installed any 7D or a full coverage mat in this yet. Kia is out of stock) Carried the same process for both. It was dark till I got over with both the cars.

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-screenshot_20200409211622_gallery.jpg
It was dark till I got over the trunk cleaning of the Sx4.

Thinking of polishing and cleaning the seats and dashboard in the coming days. I already did them in the starting of the year but I guess it deserves another shine while the doors will remain shut for long.

I love keeping my car interiors clean and I'm always complimented for this by my guests in the car.

Will post photos of the end result of my interiors whenever I get them done.
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Old 10th April 2020, 11:28   #110
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Extremely bored. I am a hardcore outdoor guy with DIY and tinkering as old hobbies. Decided to clean IDU filters for three split ACs we have. One of the unit was never cleaned after installation 3 years ago, had gathered a lot of dust. It is builder provided samsung unit. Other two are Daikins. All have similar mechanism for filter r&r. Realised only 1 Daikin has plasma filters. Others have bracket to fit it, another DIY for next time.

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-20200410_094934collage.jpg

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Old 10th April 2020, 11:39   #111
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

Originally Posted by bj96 View Post
Extremely bored. I am a hardcore outdoor guy with DIY and tinkering as old hobbies.
Same with me, i am on a mission to repair/clean/fix every household item, i am just lacking tools and materials, otherwise this lock down would have been very useful
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Old 11th April 2020, 08:30   #112
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Washed my ride a couple of days back. How are you spending time in the lockdown?-img_20200328_130151.jpg

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-img_20200328_130206.jpg

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How are you spending time in the lockdown?-picsart_041004.11.43.jpg

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-picsart_041004.10.28.jpg
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Old 12th April 2020, 20:21   #113
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Easter Specials. Again a way of spending the time during the lock down.

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-food_easter1_1.jpg
Peri Peri Drum Sticks

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-food_easter3_1.jpg
Pan Fried Chicken Breast with some cheese

How are you spending time in the lockdown?-food_easter4_1.jpg
Veg Pasta
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Old 16th April 2020, 14:45   #114
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

21 Days gone and already an array of things done and I guess the same will continue in different forms and ways.
  1. Trying hands on Cooking
  2. Spending Quality Time with Kids
  3. Playing Indoor/ Board Games
  4. Lending a helping hand in the regular Household Chores and also cleaning the Overhead Fans, cleaning and servicing Air Conditioners, cleaning Lamp Shades and Buffing Bath Fittings as well
  5. Cleaning the Cars and also cleaning fixing up kids Cycle and Scooty
  6. Watching Ramayan & Mahabharat on DD Bharati
Since I am not an IT guy, there is seriously not much work from home. However, I have started a few new things :
  • Planning Holidays
  • Attending online workshops and trainings
  • Recruitments/ Taking online interviews
  • Giving Training to Team Members - Some Technical & Sales
  • Planning business for 2020-2021
Now with the lockdown extended upto 3rd May, really no idea as to what next ? But one thing is for sure, life is definitely more disciplined.

Last edited by khan_sultan : 17th April 2020 at 08:38. Reason: April = May
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Old 28th April 2020, 20:53   #115
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

Gave a good clean shave to the head. Mine as well as my kid's too. Need not worry about the looks or how it appears and I do not think any other better time would come than this locked down summer.

It is easy to do even if you have a basic battery operated beard trimmer.
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Old 10th May 2020, 22:22   #116
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The lockdown veg biryani

So, during this lockdown, when any day of the week is indistinguishable from another, we successfully confirmed this morning that today is indeed a sunday.

Shortly after breakfast, the world's most boring household question was asked "what to cook for lunch?" - a rheotorical question, because the husband's answer has no value.
"I don't know, I'm ok with anything".
(That is how a country like Sri Lanka starts diplomatic talks with USA)

"Tell something no, I'm bored of the same set of things"

"what should I say ?"

"Im tired of this repeated sambar/rasam/avial/olan/kootu/thoran/poriyal/porichu-kuzhambu/vatha-kuzhambu/arachu-vitta-kuzhambu/morkoottaan ....."

"What about veg biriyani ?"

"Hmm...lots of work, will take hours, you will have to wash the utensils while I cook"
(That was the first torpedo into the hull of my brilliant suggestion)

Before "will take hours" became the killjoy which would quell my yearning to break away from gastro-monotony, I had to reply with something smart.

"We can easily use up all the even-odd remaining vegetables in the fridge, each set of which, by themselves do not meet the critical mass requirement for a standalone dish. Biryani is the only thing to make, if they are not to be wasted"
(USA was surprised at the strategic clarity from SriLanka, and had to relent)

"Ok, will you help me with the chopping of vegetables ? I can start the cooking process when you are done"

"Yes, madam"

The chopping began gleefully. Out tumbled all those near-expiry neglected vegetables from the back of the fridge, who were all happy to sacrifice themselves for the greater good, rather than freeze into oblivion. I was happily chopping away, a spring in my step. However, it had already reached a point of no return by the time I realized that I went a bit overboard with the chopping, and there was just too much of it in the bowl. Enough for 3 days.

The wife made a flying visit to check on me, and let out a shriek over my shoulder (actually around my elbow, she is much shorter than me).

"What is this, didn't you take a step back and look what you were doing ? see how much this amounts to, we could be eating biryani for the whole week"
(This was the US naval fleet flexing its military muscle to belittle SriLanka's lack of experience, during joint-sea-trials in the indian ocean).

It was a factually correct statement, though. By proportion, atleast 1-1.5 kgs of rice would need to be cooked, to accomodate so many veggies into the biryani. I was in a proper fix - it was my idea, and I had goofed up the execution. Already. But the first rule of diplomacy is to never admit mistakes.

And so I began "I know what I am doing, this is the ustaad-biryani that we are making, with a completely different proportion of ingredients, than other 'regular' biryanis. It's from mughal era"

"What ? what's that ? and what different proportions ?"

"The reasons for larger ratio of (vegetables : rice) involves complex understanding of heat exchange thermodynamics between metal, steam and cellulose. Do you want me to explain ?"

"My god, No. Don't. Spare me. So you are trying something. Ok. Are you sure that you are doing it right?"
(the criticism had eased. USA had taken the bait. However, there was an urgent need to quickly come up with what the hell "ustaad-biryani" really was & how it ought to be made)
"So, how to actually cook this, like normal method, using cooker only no ?"

"No no... this is a bit complex. Layer of ghee-fried onions in between rice layers, then steam cook, then some fry, some more steam cook. It's complex, I learnt from youtube"

"Oh really ?"

"Ya. You know, why don't you play with our son (the little devil who has hijacked the TV over the entire duration of this lockdown and suspended my BP-exercise sessions with Arnab Goswami), and take a well deserved break from the kitchen today, I will manage to cook the whole thing. If you wish, you just make the side-raita after I am done, ok ?"

"Are you sure ?"

"Yes my dear, close the kitchen door behind you as you leave"

(I even got a hint of a smile from USA, as the armada left SriLankan waters)

Now I had to really come up with a plan. I put my science hat on. Veggies -already too much, rice -cannot be too much. That's the problem definition.
Let me use regular rice instead of biryani rice - regular will absorb lots of the moisture released from the veggies, and puff up well, and also even smudge with the pieces better, so the proportion problem can be tackled.

Schwarzenneger is back.

Feeling smug, I began the actual cooking. Onion was fried in ghee, layered inside wet rice, cashews and raisins used liberally, veggies were sauteed, the lonely heavy-spices-box in the back corner of the kitchen cupboard finally smiled, etc, etc. Overall, the cooking turned out really well. Half hour later, the spiced-&-sauteed vegetables finally entered into the holy marriage with "regular" rice inside the pressure cooker. The smell in the kitchen was like those paradise biryani shops, and I was feeling proud of myself. Indeed, there may actually have been an 'ustaad-biryani' afterall, somewhere in india, such was my level of smugness.

Some 8-9 whistles & a further half hour later, it was time to open the cooker. The moment of truth.


It was like a 10-year old unwrapping santa's gift on boxing day and finding that the 'gift' = small brass oil lamp from Giri-Trading (chennai-ites will know) alongwith a 'temples of india' 80-page booklet. "Disappointing" is too mild a word - the cooker revealed some kind of gelatinous goo, resembling the contents of a chemical vat used to dissolve dead bodies in a bond-villain's underground bunker. There was no rice, no vegetables, only plasma. All of the contents which went in, had been nuked into their sub-molecular elemental atoms.

I had to analyze what led to this abomination. The answer was obvious -> regular rice, already sauteed veggies, too much water & too long cooking with too many whistles from the cooker - a unique jugalbandi of blunders. Hmm. Somewhere after the 3rd whistle, chemical breakdown would have happened and from the 4th onwards, until the 9th, the chemical reaction would have gradually morphed into nuclear fission. Correct analysis, but totally worthless to the situation I found myself in.
(Plan B ? what plan B ? there is no coming back from this disaster. But I had to do "something")
The smell was great, though. That was the only ray of hope, onto which some credibility had to be quickly built - yes, let's lean on the smell. I slowly closed the pressure cooker and asked my wife to not open it because I didn't want 'wasted flavour' whilst she readied the side dish raita.

Sometime later, it was lunchtime. The big reveal.

(USA's jaw dropped)
(And there appeared a condescending "you idiot" smirk on her face.)

"Oh.. dont smirk like that... its authentic ustaad biryani"

"what ? stop bluffing, you have screwed it up"

"No not at all. What that looks like, that is the consistency of lucknowi-ustaad biryani" (lucknow = extra autheniticity)

(the same shake of the head by the judge when he hears a false witness in court)
"I knew it all along that you would screw it up"

"But, but.... I was helping reduce your workload, I tried. Authentic ustaad-biryani is somewhat like this only, overcooked and tasty"

"Oh really, do you really want the conversation to go there ?"

(I stared at her unblinkingly for 2 continuous minutes, with an incredulous expression, posing as if I was holding back my many points of rebuttal because I was a gentleman; whilst it was a genuine case of repeated "no ammo" SOS pings from my brain to my tongue)

Finally the diplomacy ended.

"Im sorry, but it's still edible, the smell is great, don't you think ?"


The smirk slowly diluted but the mouth thundered "DO NOT ENTER MY KITCHEN AGAIN" as she started serving the lumps of the gelatin onto our plates.

All is well. I managed a weak smile.

"ok, let's eat. Mmm... the raita you made, wow, tastes so nice"...

Last edited by venkyhere : 10th May 2020 at 22:39.
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Old 25th May 2020, 21:31   #117
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Default Re: How are you spending time in the lockdown?

Lockdown is a new phrase that got connected to the residents of our country. Similarly, I had to worship, it as a member of this society. There was a worry about an activity which had no experience and preparation. Being a member of a joint family, at least I didn't have a fear of loneliness.
Daily work altered to home affairs. We regularly get up early to start the day at the same time table. All outsiders and service persons are not allowed to enter society, which triggered to Do It Yourself type activity. Preparing morning tea and doing some household works became a daily schedule. As a self-employed guy do not have any WFH kind activity. So the most important mission is to burn the day without office work. First few days were puzzled with experimental activities of timepass. Later commenced out with some childhood habits to come out of the exhaustion. Talking with friends and following information updates on COVID 19 from media grew to be an imperative task. I started writing some travelogues of past travel memories. Later timepass with the only kid in our home and viewing movies helped me a lot to avoid depression. Now we have learnt a lot on this pandemic situation and trying to overcome it with all precautions and indulge ourselves to a regular schedule as before when the government allows.
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Old 27th May 2020, 12:42   #118
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Interesting thread. I am in Germany and due to travel restriction I could not fly to India. Being away from family and short working weeks at my company, this lock down gave me enough time for my hobbies like painting, cooking and writing.

However, I explored a new hobby of videography when a friend of mine gifted me a gimbal on my Birthday in April.
Its a Zhiyun Smooth 4 for mobile phone and am pretty pleased with its performance.

As soon as the lock down was relaxed I decided to Shoot a video with my car in the last weeks. It is related to lock down on how we can overcome loneliness and my passion for car.
The video clips were shot on iPhone 11 with gimbal for stabilization. All clips are 4k with 60fps which made my computer a little crazy to handle the editing.

I also gifted myself a subscription of wondershare Filmora 9 video editing software which I used to edit these clips. The software is easy to use with lot of tutorials in youtube.

I hope you enjoy the video and looking forward to all your expert comments to continue my hobby

Last edited by UB_007 : 27th May 2020 at 12:43.
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Old 27th May 2020, 13:15   #119
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Originally Posted by bj96 View Post
Extremely bored. I am a hardcore outdoor guy with DIY and tinkering as old hobbies. Decided to clean IDU filters for three split ACs we have. One of the unit was never cleaned after installation 3 years ago, had gathered a lot of dust. It is builder provided samsung unit. Other two are Daikins. All have similar mechanism for filter r&r. Realised only 1 Daikin has plasma filters. Others have bracket to fit it, another DIY for next time.

Attachment 1991362

Why limit to cleaning only the filters? The inner fins and many other smaller corners inside to accumulate a lot of dust. It is better to clean those as well.

You may have to remove the plastic cover in the second image to do so but it is worth it. I recently did the same for my Mitsubishi and it did make the cooling better. If you don't want to use water, then use a regular tooth brush to clean the fins.
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Old 27th May 2020, 13:49   #120
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These days we live in the Netherlands and the lockdown situation is different from many other countries.

We have not had a real formal lockdown as such. The Dutch typically don’t take well to orders. So the government has appealed to everybody’s common sense to:

- Whenever you feel even slightly ill, stay home and self quarantine
- Wash your hands constantly and thoroughly, especially when leaving your home and returning
- Stay home, work from home as much as possible
- Do not use public transportation other than essential work/home trips
- We can go out for exercise, shopping etc.
- Cafe, hotel, restaurants, gym, hair dressers etc. all have been closed
- You can’t gather with more than 3 people in the public domain
- Schools, colleges and universities have all closed
-Museum are closed, no events are being held at all

This approach seems to have worked quite well. And recently some of the restrictions have been eased a bit.

Earlier this week I went to see my dentist for a regular check up. Dentist had voluntarily closed down for almost 10 weeks and only just re-opened. I also had my hair cut. Again hair dresser have only been allowed to open up recently.

Normally I travel a lot for my work. Last year I spend 39 weeks tramping all over the world. When not travelling I work from home anyway. What is different is that I have been working from home now for almost five months now. My wife and I also like to travel and many of our weekends we are travelling and visiting places.

Technically we can go out for a drive in one of our classic cars and we do. But as all shops, restaurant are closed it is not much fun. There is also a small practical matter. As lots of places are closed you can’t find a toilet anywhere. The petrol station are open, but they have closed their loos!

I have been going out for long bicycle rides (50-70 km) almost every day.

We are extremely fortunate as we own a large home in the rural parts of the Netherlands. We have a large garden and my wife spends hours every day attending the garden. I have my garage with my classic cars.

Much of our social life has moved into the virtual space. We stay in touch with our kids, friends and family via Zoom. All of our clubs and various other interest we have all have moved online too. It does mean I spend all my working day on my work laptop on Teams/Skype to move to my personal Mac in the evening for my hobbies, pleasure, interests.

The hardest part was our daughter being pregnant with our first grandchild. I am happy to report that Bella was born on 10th of May. My wife and I had self isolated for three weeks. So we had our groceries delivered, we did not mingle with people at all. Just to be safe to see Bella. Luckily the rules have eased up a bit and we were allowed to visit our granddaughter a few days after she was born.

Things are easing up a bit here. It is still all about social distancing. Cafe, restaurant will open up their terraces on 1st of June. Everybody has to adhere to all sort of very elaborate protocols to ensure proper social distancing.

We have taken to entertaining a bit at home again as well. Only on days when the weather is nice. We will have our kids or friends, no more than 2-3 at the time join us in our garden. Easy to keep your distance. Everybody gets their own glass and their own little bowl with crisps/peanuts.

Although everything considering we consider ourselves extremely fortunate under the circumstances I must admit I look forward to be able to travel again, both for work and personally. Though I doubt I will be doing any travel work wise before the end of the year. It is not in the cards.


Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 27th May 2020 at 15:23. Reason: Typos.
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