Small is beautiful and let us be ultra local in certain waysDecades ago, I would be in the midst of all my cousins for a compulsory stay in our ancestral village house in a lovely village in the Tanjore district of Tamil Nadu. There was a social distancing of some magnitude even then. For example, for some strange reason, those who worked in farms would salute us from a distance of over ten foot and even if we asked them to come close, they would reluctantly do so; they would be allowed to come into our houses. Our house was something like ten thousand square feet and had a big garden. We had too many coconut trees and a large number of mango trees as well. We also had vegetables grown in the garden and the workmen would be fed every day by our grandmother, for which at least ten women ( all our relatives) who would go on cooking for the extra fifteen people.
Everything was available locally and consumed locally. Those without a garden would be supplied with the vegetables at a minimum cost. Contrast this to our present times. Today, in many rural pockets, vegetables and fruits continue to be supplied and these are grown in the local villages, not exceeding a seven-kilometer radius. There is no fear of the big Koyembedu wholesale market that has now lead to thousands of infections. Here, we are totally our of fear of the virus since we do not have anyone going out. Let us be ultra-local wherever possible, in buying only from such villages.
So, avoid the red spots and the danger zones. Buy from safer places, particularly if you are close to some villages. In AP, for instance, I would see hundreds of traders selling fresh vegetables and fruits almost everywhere and inquiries would reveal that they come from villages. In particular, the area near the Renigunta railway station would be the busiest area. Do not know how it looks like now.