Lakshmi Manchu: When it comes to the pandemic, stupidity rules in India and the US
In the pandemic era, actor Lakshmi Manchu says one can only be grateful that you are able to sit on a plane and travel somewhere.
Lakshmi Manchu travelled to the US recently to meet her husband, and she admits there was not even a single moment of relief during the entire journey. The actor feels that these days, travel comes with more fear rather than excitement.
Manchu spent all of July in the US with her husband, before heading back to India in August and get back to work.
Looking back at her travel experience, she says, “I refused to get excited until I landed in America, and got through immigration. I was so nervous with all the travel bans. And every day there was a new rule that was coming through.”
She adds that meeting her husband took away the stress in some way.
“That (travel) was really nerve-wracking. But the minute I got out and saw Andy (her husband), and we went home, it was just a breath of fresh air because so many people, who were double vaccinated, were not wearing any masks,” adds the Basmati Blues (2017) actor.
Having experienced it first hand, Manchu says travel has changed a lot after the pandemic. “The most annoying part is wearing your mask on the flight and shields too, which they give you. And the services are not operating, for instance all those beautiful inflight services have been stalled at the moment. So it’s not the same feeling.”
She, however, is quick to assert that in this new version of normal, all one can do is accept it and move on. “And be grateful that you are able to sit on a plane and travel somewhere,” says the actor, who has starred in Telugu as well as English films.
Still, there are things that she misses from the pre-Covid days, biggest being the freedom to walk around without a mask.
“(Without) the fear of thinking if the other person is vaccinated. Even the simplest of things that we took for granted are our paranoia right now,” reveals the daughter of Telugu cinema’s veteran actor Mohan Babu.
Comparing the situation in India and the US, Manchu says there’s not much difference, as people are callous in both the places.
“While there is one section of the population in both the countries that understands the pandemic, there is another that doesn’t really care about it. I think stupidity rules in both countries when it comes to this pandemic. We just need to get more aware. So one is not better than the other,” she rues.
Now, Manchu is back to work, and has started shooting a show as well. She confesses that she get paranoid thinking if people around her are vaccinated or not.
“I have an active life, so I want to be uber careful because of the fear of the Delta variant. I meet my parents on a regular basis and I have a small daughter. So, I want to just be cautious, aware and prepared,” concludes the actor.