Ways to stay social for Benvenuto members during the Coronavirus quarantine  

By Marisa Riva Bonaventura

“ Stay in touch”

In these unprecedented times of banned gatherings and house arrest, it has never been more important to stay in touch with our Benvenuto friends.

Parties and get-togethers have been cancelled, vacations have been put on hold, and holidays pass by as if they’re just another day. 

But friendship is one of the few things you can’t put on hold, even in the middle of a pandemic. So how can Benvenuto club stay close without putting its members in danger? Luckily, there are many ways in which we can keep relationships strong and loneliness at bay. It just might require a little bit of creativity. 

We know it’s not the same as getting together in person, but through now popular platform programs, it has never been easier to keep in touch with our Benvenuto members from the safety of our own homes.

✿ Thanks to our Sonja, we still meet up for scheduled virtual happy hours to keep up with our newcomers ladies, our working members and all our Benvenuto friends. We have fun, we pour some drinks and toast together, we make each other laugh by socializing with one another like we normally would at a bar.

✿ Our great and omnipresent President Anne Stubley hosts some virtual games nights, quiz and cocktails nights, detective stories: while getting our own drinks ready, we engage ourselves in virtual sessions and have a lot, a lot of fun!

✿ To keep to our theme of friendship, Aliya held a heart to heart conversation to share our stories of friendships that changed our lives, taught us how to love, live and laugh, reminding ourselves that, even apart from each other, we have a bond that needs some nurturing.  A talk so comforting and making the best of a difficult situation.

✿ If solitary exercise is a downer, setting up a common time to practice yoga with our wonderful Janu can be a challenge, even for beginners! 

✿ We teach each other new skills, from cooking to aromatherapy, from quilting to workout lessons. Daniela di Gioia led us in a cooking class with recipes from Apulia, Irmi showed how to make her official Xmas cookies, Anne Stubley how to cook vegetarian. And Rachael Martin tells tales from Italian haute couture: princesses, frocks and la dolce vita.

Giving ourselves permission to try out can help to slow down daily pressures, opens a door to experimenting, offers opportunities to connect with others and provides us an excuse to ‘play,’ even in difficult times. Enjoy!

Marisa Riva Bonaventura