New York City Your Best Tool for Learning English

I’ve realized that I’ve reached a point where I’m completely used to physical distancing and wearing a mask – it certainly felt bizarre and uncomfortable for the first couple of weeks and maybe even months, but you’re probably like me now, where it’s just customary. In fact, when I’m watching TV or a movie and I see people together in large crowds without masks, I cringe – of course I know that scene was filmed pre-COVID, but it’s strange to think of a time when that’s how we all congregated.

There are certain events or activities that have changed due to the pandemic and the safety measures we have to take to avoid large crowds. I miss catching a movie at the theater or traveling to see my favorite band at a huge venue. I miss amusement parks and comedy shows. While the true experience of those events have shifted, many of these industries have pivoted their platforms to virtual experiences so that they can continue bringing in revenue and you can continue to enjoy the event – it’ll just have to be from your home!

I’ve pulled together a collection of virtual New York City experiences happening in the month of November, but keep in mind that one of the huge benefits of so many events going virtual is that you’re not geographically bound to just the city! So do some research and see what other events are being held that you can “attend” without even leaving your couch!

  • Cocktail Making Class, November 1, 2020

I’ll be the first to admit to you that I’ve been sipping on a little bit more wine since we’ve been spending so much more time at home. And I’ve found myself missing the days of ordering unusual drinks at bars and experimenting with something I’ve never had while out on the town for dinner. If this sounds like you too, you might be interested in this event, hosted by Eventbrite. In this virtual event, you’ll learn a variety of classic and original recipes that you can easily make at home and wow your guests the next time you have a low-key get together. This is a great way to test out your own cocktail-making skills while also adding a few more tricks up your sleeve!

  • Virtual Job Fair, November 10, 2020

No matter where you are in your career, whether you’re still in school or thinking about a career change, this event is one that you shouldn’t miss! The organizer, JobFairX, has pulled together a wide variety of industries that are looking for talented people to join their teams, and this virtual event will provide you the opportunity to network and engage, share experiences, and broaden your search capabilities. Since the pandemic has rocked our economy so drastically in just a matter of months, the job market has shifted just as much – so this is one you should be sure to attend!

  • NYC Trivia Night, November 10, 2020

Whether you’re new to New York City or have been around for a few years, this event is a great way to test your knowledge of the great Big Apple – against people from all over the world, nonetheless! Since this event is strictly virtual, you’ll be able to participate without even leaving your home! Order in takeout, crack open a beer, and see how much you know! You can either play independently or with a team, so be sure you have all those details ironed out before you register so you can get ready to test your knowledge as soon as the day arrives.

  • Acting 101: Beginning Technique and Scene Study, November 10, 2020

If acting is something you’re serious about or if it’s a passion that you’re trying to hone in on while living in this strange time, this might be the virtual event for you. While this particular experience is a bit pricier than other virtual events discussed so far, you’ll know that you’ll be getting the experience of a lifetime. Check out all the other opportunities this group has if you’re interested in other virtual events!

  • Zoom Comedy Show, November 28, 2020

If we’ve all needed a laugh together, it’s now. If you need something to entertain yourself following your Thanksgiving festivities, this is the place to “be”! With comedians from some of the most well-known shows and networks, you’ll be set to laugh your socks off! Be sure to register soon, because this event is filling up quickly.

Category : Stay in New York

It’s almost hard to think about what our world was like before COVID-19 became a part of it. I find myself referring to the time before the pandemic as “pre-COVID” when I’m telling a story, which is a strong indication to just how big of an impact this experience has been on all of us. In an odd way, this pandemic is the one that that we’re all experiencing on a universal level. Each personal experience is unique from the next, and it’s certain that this is something that none of us will forget for the rest of our lives.

Beyond the physical aspect of the pandemic, the virus itself, this moment in time has impacted and affected so many factors of our lives. One of the biggest ways that it’s taken a toll on is our mental and emotional health. Whether we’ve lost our jobs or had to take pay cuts, or if we’re far from family and live alone, or even if we’re already living with a chronic condition and are having trouble accessing our primary health specialist or our treatment – this experience is unique for each and every one of us, and it’s more important than ever to make sure that we’re all taking care of our mental health.

I consider myself one of the lucky ones. I’m fortunate enough to be able to work from home full-time without my pay being affected. While I still get to “see” my coworkers via Zoom, I’m certainly missing the in-person interaction that came with the office, especially with those that I don’t work that intimately with. Because I live alone, I relied on those day-to-day in-person interaction to fill the need of human intimacy – now that I don’t have that, there’s a level of daily loneliness that has increased.

I’m also the only one in my family that lives here in New York City. My family members are spread out over the states, so visiting them hasn’t been a realistic option for me. Again, I’m thankful for our technology these days to keep us in touch, and with FaceTime and Zoom, I can be sure to “see” them on a regular basis, but to the same idea above, it’s certainly not the same. 

Something else that I’m grieving that I wasn’t expecting is the city itself. Sure, the past couple of months I’ve been writing about how there’s still plenty to do and see here while we’re in the middle of this pandemic, but I also won’t lie to you: it’s not the same. Because I’m spending so much more time inside my studio apartment, there are many days when I practically forget that I live in the best city in the world. When I was commuting to work, taking the subway, transferring at Times Square, and passing thousands of other New Yorkers a day, I truly felt like I was making the most of my experience of living in this great city. Without that, there’s a level of removal that I’m feeling – I feel like I miss the city, even though I’m still here.

Paying attention to all of these new feelings and emotions is crucial as we continue to move forward into the next couple of months. I still maintain my weekly therapy sessions (virtually, of course), and every week, my therapist starts off the conversation with, “How was this week for you?” I come to those sessions every week prepared and take a deep breath as I recount yet another week of living in quarantine. Sometimes, my emotions are monotonous, just like my days. Often I’m feeling suffocated, defeated, scared, lonely, and worried. There’s so much uncertainty in our world these days that I feel comforted when she tells me that I’m not alone, that these emotions are felt city-wide, state-wide, and worldwide. She urges me to keep reaching out to my friends to talk, video chat, and connect. She urges me to continue to count what I consider lucky while still thinking of others that are struggling in different ways. She urges me to listen to my instincts and write things out if I’m having a tough day. She’s also mentioned that if I ever feel that I need additional help beyond what she’s providing me that I need to tell her so that she can refer me to that additional expertise.

I urge you to do the same, as there’s not a more important time to do this than right now.  

Category : Stay in New York