It was a reprieve once. It was where we headed – for comfort, for freedom, for a hot meal and a warm bed. This place called home was what separated the official from the personal. A space that was your own, with designated comfort zones. Every quarter of the day split evenly among each member of the family. Early mornings consumed by packing off the junior-most to school, mid-mornings shaped around getting oneself to office, the rest of the day dedicated to work – minus the concerns of home, evenings meant addressing those very concerns. Then came the starry nights, made more enticing by a now retired household and the firestick control resting lovingly by your side. There was a sense of oneness with the universe then, a calm that floated serenely around the living room, with a single light illuminating your majestic presence. Weekdays like this blossomed into weekends, when one embraced family time and the chaos of it all. Since it was just two days of it, and one had to make it count. Or so we believed.
That was before the end of the world. Remember the year 2019? Well that was when it happened. While we in our innocence had believed for decades that the end of the world would be Hollywood-like. Mighty big waves chewing up the earth, or a great ball of fire devouring all in sight, things showering down upon us or erupting from the ground below. Who knew then that a nasty little virus was all it would take to destroy the world as we knew it.
Until we woke up one morning with nowhere to head. Work, home, kids, parents, spouses, help, all ensnared in a juggernaut. Each intruding into the other’s space. Each trying to claim a few square feet of built-up space as their own. Neither a penthouse nor a villa now seems big enough. Sound travels, and how! Acoustics within four walls is a matter of many inhouse dissertations. As also the prime determinant of why a particular room ought to be evacuated of every living soul as soon as an official video call commenced.
The Wi-Fi connection that once did very well as a home hygiene factor, has today morphed into a high-maintenance wilful mistress, who chooses to abscond just when version 23 of the final presentation has to be mailed out. And that’s exactly when your 7th grader’s online math class link comes through. While the phone hotspot is not of much consequence for your 34MB file transfer, the math teacher’s resounding voice is booming through the living room. But whatever happened to the headphones one might ask. Well the little one has got it on, coz she wants to be a part of the new Digi gig too. Try getting it off her and acoustics would have a whole new meaning. Yet, all of this is prior to the help calling in for a rain check. The apartment association has just decided to stop all incoming traffic.
While these loony set of events are now painfully commonplace at work time from home, the dining chair that doubles up as the work chair hurts much more. The couch, the sofa, the bed, the wicker chair, the loveseat – are all just as bad. You wonder what made you invest in any of these, when not one fills in for a serious work partner. Come to think of it, why doesn’t your well-put-together home, your erstwhile labour of love, have not one effective, functional space, to work peacefully from?
Well, here’s what we say, we hear you. We got your back. Like the experience of your home was welcoming once, your work from home experience will now be welcoming too.