This Is My Normal: Nidhi Sunil, New York City
Model Nidhi Sunil is currently in New York City, USA, which is one of the epicenters of the disease and has been severely affected. Earlier, all schools were shut and social-distancing rules were strictly enforced, but subsequently residents were allowed to venture outside for essentials and fresh air. As of May 20, all 50 states in the U.S. had begun to reopen to some degree, two months after the outbreak forced the country into lockdown. And while some areas of New York may begin to reopen nonessential businesses this weekend, New York City is not one of them. In her photo essay, Sunil marvels at the new rhythm that New Yorkers find themselves in: of being conflicted between enjoying restful moments at home or in the sun and the dread of hearing another siren go off.
Summer’s here…well almost. It feels nothing like New York, It feels everything like New York. To be fair, New York has always been polarising; dazzling cruelty juxtaposed against bursts of redemption. So maybe nothing has changed; except that New Yorkers are now actually living in their flats as opposed to living at work. So maybe everything has changed. The sirens going off night and day are laced with a special kind of dread. Wonder who that person is? Will they make it back home?
The time off from my old rhythm has been at once restful and tense. I took a walk in the park and found empty benches and unexpected sunlight. The sunlight feels tangible, like someone poured warm honey into my veins. It changes me noticeably and I realise I may not have noticed that two months ago.