Beyond #WFH is our initiative to spread positivity and inspire our readers by inviting leaders and friends to share what they do to unwind and relax after they finish their work-from-home and work-for-home responsibilities during the lockdown.
While Covid-19 has had multiple impacts on business and Beyond #WFH is not about business, it’s about self-discovery, things that will give us the strength to get through the lockdown and more importantly for those ‘moments’ that will stay with us for long and beyond this pandemic. PS: We are not talking business!
In this story of Beyond #WFH we bring to you a leader who needs no introduction, Abraham Thomas, CEO, BIG FM.
Don’t forget to watch the small montage Abe has made for all of us! Quarantine for him is all about Music, Masala and Malts! (I mean after work, obviously)
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Caught in a landslide, no escape from reality
Open your eyes, look up to the skies and see…
Every morning, Freddie Mercury’s voice fills up my house 7 am onwards from my Marshall speakers placed on the bar. Following him, my playlist moves on to Sting and then to Pink Floyd, from which begins my day. Nothing guarantees a good morning like the intro to ‘Shine on you crazy diamond’. The music continues to play through the day, be it from my speakers or from the vinyl record player in my den. With a few classics in my collection of vinyls like Dire straits and Phil Collins, to Sinatra, Nat King Cole and Jim Reeves, I mandate myself to sit and cozy up listening to the soothing sound of the record player so as to bring forth that strong sense of peace that the music brings out in me. No matter what I move on to do during the day, music always has to surround the environment.
It’s been over a month since the lockdown started and unpredictably yet wondrously so, our lives took a sharp swerve. There’s new-found gratitude for things that were so taken for granted and amidst all the upheaval, one is learning to become zen. As precarious these times are, they have also helped us to press the pause button and reset few things in motion. Days for me are now about exploring new passions whilst revisiting some old ones. I have always found music to be therapeutic, no wonder it dominates my professional life as well.
More often than not, as my favorite songs set the tone for my day, I find myself spending some time in the kitchen rediscovering my passion for cooking. I am more than keen to cook for the family when the opportunity arises. From Kerala chicken curry, egg roast, and biryani to good old Bombay toast and egg cheese sandwiches, I’ve tried it all. Seeing my family happily devouring the many dishes I make is a different kind of contentment. A barbecue set that laid untouched in the back deck has now been opened and experimented with. From my secret, Jack Daniels marinated to various improvisations in the marinate thereof, many juicy pieces of lamb and chicken have been devoured by all. As they say, the journey is worth more than the destination and it surely stands true in my case. My favorite food buddy, though, is my dog who simply chomps on the bones given to him from the barbecue. I have now made it mandatory for a once a week barbecue night with the family where we enjoy the time without our technological other.My culinary experiments have made me value this time with my family, and I wish to continue enjoying these long after the lockdown is over and we have all resumed to our old routines.
If you ever wondered what would go best with a good meal, the answer is simple, a good single malt. My collection of peaty single malts like Ardbeg, Talisker and Laphroig standstill in my bar eagerly waiting for me to pour a drink for myself at night. The combination of the grilled meat, a good old single malt and the sound of Kenny Rogers singing can never be put into words, it needs to be experienced.
Another highlight of my week is the DDP (distant drinking party) every Friday night at 8.30 pm where 6 of us best friends gather together on zoom to converse over the best single malts. Choosing from the four quadrants of Smokey n Light e.g. Laphroaig and Oban, Smokey and Rich e.g. Lagavulin and Singleton, Rich and Delicate e.g. Macallan and Aberlour to Delicate and Light e.g. Glenmorangie and Isle of Jura, our conversations range from the regional variations in Scotland from the lowlands to the highlands to solving world problems. More than considering this as my ‘me-time’, this is my passion and hence the three words to describe my life at the moment would be Music, Masala and Malts.
These passions of mine enable me to spend quality time with myself and my loved ones, making it easier for me to brave the current times. I do realize that this period can be emotionally and physically demanding for many, but it is imperative for us to see every challenge as an opportunity to better ourselves, personally and professionally. Being an eternal optimist, I do believe that these trying times will soon be behind us and we will all be out in the sun again. Till then, we just need to remember what my favorite artist Freddie Mercury once so famously crooned, ‘We are the champions, my friends, and we’ll keep on fighting till the end’