Living in the Pandemic

My first visit to a museum in 2-1/2 years.

I’d like to emphasize the word “living” in my title for this post. Despite the fact that NYC’s Covid positivity rate this first week of August is showing up at 13.5%, I decided it was time for me to visit a museum again. I’m not sure why it took this long to make that decision. It just did. In one word, it was wonderful.

Based on my conversations with friends, many of whom are over 65, we seem to be crawling out from under our pandemic rocks at our own speeds. As we all know too well, the pandemic and the variants are constantly changing. So what might have seemed safe a few months ago, may not now. For me, personally, I just don’t like wearing a mask indoors for the time it would take to watch a play or a movie. So that has eliminated those options from my return to any semblance of pre-pandemic normalcy. As with most of us who have been double-vaccinated and boosted, we’re reassured that even while our vaccinations have likely worn down in efficacy, they’re still useful enough to keep us out of ER’s and off ventilators. Frankly, that’s pretty reassuring.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art was crowded when I got there Monday afternoon. The Met no longer requires proof of vaccination or even a face mask. Many people weren’t wearing one. However, I had my KN95 one on and, if I got to a place in the museum that wasn’t too crowded, I pulled mine down.

Walking around some of the featured exhibitions and seeing some of the magnificent art was simply wonderful and reminded me why New York is such an incredible place to live. It was one of the best afternoons I’ve had in a long time.

Get Out of Your House!

Dinnergroupartcartoon

Inertia is a powerful force.  We may be sitting on the sofa reading the newspaper or a book, and finding it an extremely pleasant way to spend the time.  Especially if it’s raining out.   Also,  if you went to the dinner you were invited to attend, you’d need to change clothes.  Yes,  you RSVP’d that you’d attend, but now, upon reflection, were you really that excited about spending time with group of people who were acquaintances but not really close friends?  All these thoughts may go through your head and keep you sitting on the sofa while plotting some convincing excuses for why you can’t make it.

However, this is a pitch to recommend getting up off the sofa, changing clothes and getting out — even if the people you’ll be meeting are not your BFF’s.

It seems pretty obvious that as we get older, there’s enormous value in socializing and spending time with other people, especially if you live alone.  We’ve all read that having a network of friends can help us live longer.  Apart from the human companionship, there’s quite a lot to be said for changing it up and doing things that are different.  I’m no expert on the human brain but those synapses in our brains like change and get all fired up when we do novel things.  Perhaps meeting at a new restaurant, trying something different to eat, having some interesting conversations or meeting some new people would all help to keep our brains sharper.

The bottom line,  just get out there!