Meeting after quarantine
By Priyangwada Perera
Ceylon Today Features
Quarantine days were finally coming to an end and life was slowly getting back to normal. After being locked in for ages, Amy was told that she could actually go out. Her friends, Hello Kitty, Charmy Kitty, Minnie Mouse and Goosey were going to meet.
Amy was on her way to meet her friends. Hello Kitty and Charmy Kitty had jumped for joy at the thought of meeting each other. Minnie Mouse had also promised to join them. As she walked to the place they were supposed to meet, she thought of the conversation she had with her mother.
“But Amy, remember this. Just because we can go out and the threat of COVID 19 is somewhat lessened, that does not mean we are totally safe,” Amma had told her.
This had come to Amy as a surprise. “What do you mean, Amma? The curfew is no more and we can move about. So, why are you saying all this to me?” Amy asked.
Her mother shook her head. “The restrictions are lifted because life has to go on, but there are certain basic rules that we have to maintain. For example, the distance between each other is one major thing,” she had insisted.
“Oh no,” said Amy in dismay. “Why is it so important?” Amy asked. “How can I go to meet my friends and not go close?” Amy was almost in tears. Amma did not agree. “You can always do that. You do not have to go sit on the lap of your friends, do you? I am sure there is no need to hold hands and hug,” she said. Amy agreed. With these thoughts in mind, Amy left the house to meet her friends.
It has been three months since they last met. It really was a joy to see them all. Everyone was pleased to see each other, so pleased that they really felt like hugging each other. But they could not. The first thing Amy saw, from far away, was that Hello and Charmy Kitty were extremely close to each other. Immediately, her mother’s words came to her mind.
“Make sure you maintain your distance!” This was what her mother had repeatedly said. Amy reached her friends and without even greeting them, she said, “Hello and Charmy, I think you are too close to each other.” Amy did not realise that she was almost screaming but she was so anxious and loud that the Charmy and Hello jumped out of their skin and distanced themselves.
“Oh dear, why did you shout so much, Amy? You almost gave us heart attacks.” Hello spoke for them both.
Charmy actually had her hand on her heart. “She is right, Amy. You did give us a scare. Were we too close to each other? Maybe because we are at home together all the time we don’t really realise that we tend to get close to each other,” Charmy said.
Minnie squealed in delight. “That was so funny. You see, I am the perfect one. Look how I have maintained my distance!” she said triumphantly.
“Any other day I would come and squashed you, Minnie, but today, I chose not to,” Amy shouted.
Just then Goosey also arrived. “Sorry about being late, friends. My mother gave me a hundred and one advices on social distancing,” Goosey said with a smile.
They looked at each other with beaming smiles. “Well, our parents would be very proud of how we have used our newfound freedom. We have all been very responsible,” Amy said.
“Yes, we must have self discipline and only we can make sure of our safety,” Minnie added.
Hello and Charmy said that they are the luckiest to have each other at home. “But even then, we do not go hugging and bugging,” they said and the whole bunch laughed together after such a long time. “Welcome back to the real world!” said Amy and started singing. Others joined her in song.