PART 1 THE ALCOHOL MALADY. It was March 2020 when the first cases of the covid 19 were reported in Kerala. The state made famous for containing the Nipah Virus. By end of March everyone were taken by surprise and fear as the UNO declared it as a pandemic and many countries were shutting down to contain the spread. India was not behind. By end of March the country went into complete lockdown. This is something no one has experienced before. Though each and every one of us was scared, we wanted to be careful. People all over resorted to panic buying. The world had a shortage of Toilet paper, while in India we laughed at it. In Kerala the most missed commodity in many household was alcohol. Well now I have a neighbour, a not so old couple. The man is a retired police officer who is about 73 years old and his wife who is 63 years old. They have 3 children living in this same place, Palakkad. So there is a constant visit from children and grandchildren in their house. It is a laughter filled house. A month of lockdown went smoothly and then came the fidgeting for alcohol. My neighbour, who we thought was a very quiet person, started making discreet enquiries as to where he can get a bottle. He was even willing to buy in pegs and willing to pay any price. He went around the neighbourhood and thus began the search for the bottle by all the alcohol consuming people. Somehow an auto guy was found who had enormous stock. What more, my neighbour stuck a deal with him, where this auto man would come and stand at the road corner and supply for everyone in the locality. It was a very convenient arrangement for everyone. When we saw a group of men walking together in one direction then we know the auto has arrived, much to the dismay of the wives. Now my neighbour, like I said the very quiet person, took to drinking like a fish. He would be as high as the sky at 11 Am and scream like someone is beating him. The first few times we would run to see what happened to see his wife very embarrassed and nodding her head indicating nothing is wrong. Then he would swagger around and talk to everyone. This was a big time pass for all who had nothing to do. This went on and on for a couple of months and one fine day all the alcohol consuming men went to meet the auto with their fat purses. The auto came at the allotted time. The auto man got down with a big grin to start his business, suddenly he fell and died. It was a heart attack. So sadly, the men returned and everybody sobered down feeling sad that their supply had ended. But 2 months later the lockdown ended and shops opened and it was business galore. Our man was overjoyed and drank and screamed in pleasure. But then now again here we are the second wave has hit. No alcohol available and the man again, as sorrowful as ever, and what more we are all missing some entertainment, in our boring lives.