The bright side of lockdown


Filepic of people shopping for ingredients for baking during the lockdown. A passion for baking can turn into an opportunity to start a business during the pandemic.

I WANT to go home!

Under the movement control order (MCO), I am stuck in Penang while my family is back in my hometown, Ipoh.

Pictures of their delicious home- cooked meals and interesting lockdown activities in our family chatgroup never fail to make me yearn for home.

Thankfully, my brother managed to head home before the lockdown and be with our parents after completing his finals exam, or else he would have been stuck in Melaka.

Seeing their yummy dishes has motivated me to try cooking on my own, so I asked for the recipes from my mum and brother.

Let’s hope I’ll not burn down the kitchen!

But the lazy person in me still depends on takeaways and deliveries.

Being in a lockdown can really take a toll on people’s mental health due to the lack of human interaction and uncertain, worrying situations.

Instead of focusing on the negative, I recently decided to make some ‘lockdown resolutions’ and mark things off the bucket list.

Here are some of the things that I would like to achieve during the lockdown.

For someone who prefers outdoor exercises such as hiking and cycling, not being able to be with nature is eating me up.

I was hiking at least once a week prior to the lockdown and it was a great exercise to shed the extra pounds.

For now, I can only jog around my neighbourhood or do home exercises by following fitness gurus on YouTube.

Then there is my diet, which is always in a mess. But then, there is always a tomorrow when it comes to eating clean and losing weight.

Inspired by one of my assistant news editors, I gave a short-term egg fast a try but failed terribly.

It is funny how everything seems to be tastier when you are starting a diet. The junk food on my shelf seduces me when I walk past them every time.

But still, I have decided that I should take small steps when making healthier food choices.

Another inspiration from someone close to my heart has gotten me to practise meatless Fridays.

Studies have shown that going meatless at least once a week is good for our health and that it lowers the risk of getting cancer.

It is June now, half a year has passed; time to look back at the resolutions that I made at the beginning of the year.

Small steps can really make a big difference in the long run and

I believe that habits shape life. Remember the hare and tortoise story? Slow and steady wins the race.

So, without pushing myself too hard, I will make conscious day-by-day efforts to cook my own food more often and eat clean.

Next will be the effort to form deeper bonds and relationships.

It is important to look out for each other and support friends and family. A kind gesture, a phone call or even a smile can always go a long way.

I have been watching quite a few lifestyle videos on YouTube.

Instead of scrolling through people’s social media and comparing myself with them, I am trying to focus more on improving myself and be thankful for the good things and kind souls in my life.

As we have more time during the lockdown period, why not pick up some books to read?

Reading can expand our horizon and make us wiser. It will stimulate our creativity and is a sweet escape from the drudgery of life.

A few days ago, I visited a bakery in George Town and was amazed at how an undergraduate took up entrepreneurship during the first MCO.

Her passion for baking was ignited and she started selling burnt cheesecakes through her social media.

I was impressed by how she managed to find the light at the end of the tunnel and turn it into an opportunity to start a business during the pandemic.

My social media feed has been flooded with pictures of delicious home-cooked food and desserts during the MCO and surprisingly, many of my friends are good chefs and bakers.

People are staying safe at home and not travelling unnecessarily, and it turns out that cooking and baking are their escapism.

I was told that cream cheese and sponge fingers were sold out during the first MCO due to the burnt cheesecake and tiramisu craze.

I wonder what the trend will be this year? Come on people, show the world your creativity! I can’t wait to see what this lockdown will offer.

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