Since lockdown extended every month, it was June 14 when I and my family finally decided to move to our second home in Khandala. With no fixed date/month of returning back to Thane, we packed whatever we thought we would need. A house which was previously used only during weekends (mostly for parties) is now being used as a full-time house! Empty, smooth, and never used study table drawers, cupboards, and storage spaces now had a reason to be used. It almost felt like setting up a complete house from scratch. Getting used to the new setup and forested environment with no television or any traffic sound took us some time to settle in. It’s been five months now, and we have planted more than 110 plants, grown our vegetables and fruits. I have been feeding squirrels, stray dogs, rescued a pup near my house wherein I got to learn and work with a rescue team as well.

I have now built a new relationship with this house, where every corner and every tree now feels mine. We have become so used to this calm environment that we never talk about returning to Thane (well, not until May at least). Thus a second home, distant from the city in this situation has swapped its role – creating a much safer environment.

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