Day 0: Check check check in

A day late (as usual), but hopefully I can make up for it with all my photos!

We arrived to Columbus yesterday (Friday) morning, my mom and I driving separately in to our air bnb in Columbus. I’m kind of obsessed with air bnb, I’ve stayed in them on most of my recent trips and you can usually save tons compared to hotels.

Ours is a wonderful apartment in the King-Lincoln neighborhood, about a mile from downtown/the convention center. Erica and Ben are great hosts, but their cat, Loaf, is an even better one.

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Hi, Loaf!

After get settled in, we Uber-ed down to the convention center, getting lucky with knowledgeable drivers who could avoid all the construction. The convention center went all out for Girl Scouts, right from the entrance we could tell we were in the right place.

We proceeded to an information booth to get oriented to the huge convention center and find the volunteer check in. A very nice volunteer walked us aaaaaaaallllll the way down to the other side to check in.

Volunteers receive one Hall of Experiences pass per shift they are working. We picked up these as well as some goodies for volunteers. We then headed back downstairs to the Hall of Experiences.

 

If you’ve ever attended any type of convention, you know the feeling when you first walk in to the hall and feel very small. There were tons of booths from Girl Scout and non Girl Scout related companies and organizations. It was divided into “neighborhoods” by themes like Life Skills, Entrepreneurship, and A World for Girls. There were also a few “Campfires”, (I love it!) where exhibitors were scheduled to give talks at various times.

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Many (probably most) of the exhibitors had hands-on activities at their booths, which was GREAT! It was getting the girls involved, and getting them to spend more time at each booth. There were a ton of STEAM themed booths, a whole section for NASA, a Space Camp booth, lots of robotics and we got a peek at the COSI (Center of Science and Industry) booth, where we will be spending the night tonight.

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Learning by Doing!

As always when girls get together, it was inspiring to see the future leaders of the world. In the World for Girls sections, there was representation of the Five World Centres, and an area to join the Girl Scout Advocacy Network, and place sign a petition to rename a bridge in Savannah, Georgia to the Juliette Gordon Low Bridge (signed!).

In the Girl Scout Shop (with so many things that were so hard NOT to buy!), I met up with a friend from Sangam (who helps run this awesome zine with her council in Atlanta). It was great catching up with her and I was reminded how small the Girl Scout world can be. I’m hoping to catch up with a few other friends I know who are in various capacities.

After seeing all there was to see (I think we hit all of it!), we hopped in another Uber back to our air bnb and grabbed dinner at a local “pub”. We hit the hay early to get ready for our BIG DAY on Friday.

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Let’s Get This Party Started

 

Namaste!

So last week was my first event, and my last week of training.  I’m now officially the MCI! With real MCI work!

We finished the event on Sunday, and, miraculously, many of the participants actually left that evening.  Since we had Gwen’s birthday during the event and didn’t really get a chance to celebrate, we had a “surprise” party for her in the staff lounge upstairs.

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Happy Birthday Gwen!

We’ve had a lot of new people move in upstairs in the last few weeks (a new volunteer from Australia just

arrived!) and we were all tired from the event so we were glad to have an excuse for a party.

Gwen was very surprised to find that the theme of the party was her birthday, and Catherine has organized some cheesy party games for all of us.  It was awesome to all get together and eat and drink and just hang out.  A lot of times working at Sangam, you can get really wrapped up in your work.  It’s awesome work, but you will get burned out if you do anything 24/7, no matter how awesome it is.

Christa made these awesome cookies out of some stuff I brought from the states, and I need to remember to get the recipe from her, because they would be great for daisy girl scouts!

Sugar cookies with frosting and jumbo marshmallow petals.  With a surprise inside!

Sugar cookies with frosting and jumbo marshmallow petals. With a surprise inside!

We learned though one of Catherine’s games that Camilla, from Denmark, can turn a certain kind of cracker all the way around in her mouth.  None of us knew what kind of cracker she was talking about, so she found one about the same size and showed us. Then, Sarah tried to do the same, but did not fair very well.

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Camilla’s special talent

 

Sarah needs more practice...

Sarah needs more practice…

We also messed around with some Christmas decorations, put up pink lights in the hall, and balanced a snowman on Jen’s head.  It was a pretty fun night.

So, I should probably wrap up now, I have to get up at 4am tomorrow morning to greet 33 guests for our next event.  I have Friday off, and I want to write a post more about WAGGGS (World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts) and will hopefully be more rested then.  I’m also working on a video to promote our Be The Change events, so when I finish that maybe I’ll write more specifically about what guests experience at our different events.

As always, thanks so much for reading, please share this blog with anyone you think might like it, and if you have any questions, please comment!

Yours in scouting,

Ana Cristina