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Lights out!

4th of February, 2023

A big blast, and suddenly everything is black.

What on Earth is going on?

Oh, of course. It is yet another blackout.

Been a millennial, blackout is not something new to me, but its recent emergence has been quite a problem; especially when EVERYTHING we do nowadays is connected to the internet. And to the utter disappointment of my two younger siblings who are mostly glued to their phones and tabs, our generator is not connected to the plug points, so the router is shut down. It wouldn’t have mattered if it was connected anyway; for this time, credit to a mysterious reason, the caretaker of our building informed us that he cannot start the generator. Due to some ‘technical reason’.

Right. Another way to say he’s too lazy to do that after dinner time.

Now then, what do we do?

Like the good old days, I turned on a few candles that I found in our store room. The first thing that caught my eyes are the panic-stricken faces of my siblings; they are not used to extended period of time without the net. Knowing that we are moments away from being showcased some next level meltdown from the two generation Z siblings of mine, I devised the perfect distraction- something of my liking!

It didn’t take long for my brother and sister to come to our dining table the instant they saw me unboxing something- a board game! With screens momentarily out of their sight, they got curious about the game I took out casually, with the purpose of ‘cleaning it’.

What is it about? How is it played? Can three players play together?

With the rain of questions thrown upon me, I gladly answered all of them. And in no time, I got two very enthusiastic (and not to panic-stricken) companions by my side, eager to play one round of game with me.

And thus started a game session to remember!

I was genuinely shocked how hooked my siblings got on a role-play based game! We started cheering and shouting, and got the whole house wide awake! I noticed my parents peeking from their bedroom to see what we are up to, and in no time they joined the three of us with some snacks. A three player game got upgraded to a five player game!

A blackout, in a space of thirty minutes, made way for an amazing candle-lit board game night!

And then with a bright flash of light everywhere, electricity returns.

For a brief moment it felt like we were all in a trance. Then we all burst out in a laughter for the ever-so highly entertaining time we had in this blackout. With the return of electricity, all the phones and tabs started buzzing in; and with that, my gen Z siblings hopped right back to where they left off with their phones, as did my parents. With everyone back to their station, I sat alone on the dining space, with the gaming pieces scattered all over the table- with a few questions mingling in my mind.

Will I only get the whole family together in such a recreational activity when the electricity is out? Is a blackout the prerequisite to us having such an excellent time together? I couldn’t recall the last time five of us having such an amazing time.

That’s when I got a poke on my shoulder. The gen Zs have returned.

“Bhaiya, can we play games every day after dinner? We really liked it!”

A big grin spread across my face. You know my answer, don’t you?

There’s hope after all!