Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Home from Miami & an Interview Update!

I've been so bad about blogging for the past week and a half! Last week, I was so focused on getting ready for my final interview in Miami that I just didn't find the time to write. I even forgot to weigh in on Friday before we left! I blame that on excitement and having to wake up at 3:30 AM! Now, on to a recap of my weekend in Miami and the results of my interview with Carnival!

Before I start, I have to say that I thought of this as more of a business trip and not a vacation trip, so I didn't take many pictures.

Like I said, Friday morning (3:30 AM!) we woke up to get ready for our drive to DFW Airport where we would board a plane for Fort Lauderdale at 7:30 AM. Everything went smoothly from the drive there to going through security to loading the plane. We arrived in Fort Lauderdale around 11:30 AM, headed to pick up our car rental, and then were able to check into our hotel early. :-)

My interview wasn't until Saturday, but we had already decided that we would drive to the Carnival offices in Miami on Friday to make sure we knew where it was and how to get there. Well, what should have taken us an hour round-trip took us two and a half hours! We exited off the freeway before we should have, the GPS on our phones was totally confused, and we ended up in one of the worst neighborhoods in Miami (which we didn't know at the time, but my mom Googled later when we were back in the hotel room).

So, after that craziness, we made it back to our hotel room and got ready to go out to eat at The Cheesecake Factory for my sister's birthday. Huge portions of food and awesome surprises there.

We were so tired from our long day; we decided to go back to the hotel to get ready for the next morning. The day of my interview!

I woke up early the next day to prepare for my interview. I knew it was going to be a long day because the email said to plan on staying from 9-5. Thankfully, I was able to leave around 3.

Interview Outfit (before I bought shoes and a bag)
The drive there on Saturday morning was so much better than the day before! On our way there, I saw three different rainbows, so I snapped a picture of one of them. When I got to the Carnival office, I signed in and waited with a few other candidates that were there to interview. After a few minutes of waiting, we were led back to the room where we would fill out paperwork and listen to a presentation.

If I knew how to Photoshop the power lines out, I would.
Before they began the presentation, we played a 'getting to know you' game where we had to stand in a large circle and throw a small soccer ball to each other. The ball had lots of different topics on it, and whatever two topics your thumbs land on, you pick one of those and answer it. I can't remember one of my topics, but the one I answered was 'Ideal Car.' If you know me at all, then you know I don't really care too much about 'cool' cars. My answer was, "I know this isn't the coolest car to most people, but ever since they came out, I have wanted a Toyota FJ Cruiser." The first part of my answer got some laughs, so I was happy. :-D

My Ideal Car
After the game, we listened to Carnival's Supervisor of Youth Programming, Kristi Ainsworth, talk about ship life, the different youth programs on the ships, and what we would need to do if we were hired. The presentation took about 2 hours and was very informative! All the things I'd been trying to find on the Internet were discussed in detail during the presentation, so the time really flew by because everything was so interesting to me!

Once the presentation was finished, we had a short break and then one-on-one interviews would begin. There were 18 of us that came on Saturday, so it was going to take some time for each of us to be interviewed. I was one of the last 4 to be called back. My interview was with two of the youth directors that are currently on Carnival ships. They asked me to tell them a little bit about myself, my experience with children and the fun things I did with them, how I liked the presentation, why I want to work on a ship, and then it was over. I talked to them maybe 5 minutes. My recruiter told me not to feel discouraged if I only talked to them for 5 minutes, but when I left, I was thinking, 'Well, I tried my best, but I'm not as confident coming out of the interview as I was going in.'

My mom and sister came to pick me up, and while we drove back to Fort Lauderdale, I told them all about the day. They also had quite the experience at the beach, which I might write about later this week or next week.

Saturday night, we ate at a local seafood restaurant in Fort Lauderdale called Coconuts. I thought it was good, but my mom didn't really care for it. We had a neat view of the boats in the water though.

My mom and me (What am I looking at?!!?!)
We were all going to go back to the beach after we ate, so I could go swimming too. Sadly, it started raining and didn't stop until it was too dark to go to the beach. There aren't any lights turned on at the beach during the night because of the turtles that come up to lay their eggs. Maybe next time!

Sunday morning, we woke up and headed to the Fort Lauderdale airport to make our way back to Texas. Even though I knew we wouldn't hear anything one way or the other for a week, I kept checking my email. Well, on Monday (a week early!), I got the news...

I am thrilled! Out of the 18 of us that were there, 10 of us were offered a position with the youth staff. Now comes lots of paperwork I need to complete, and once all of it clears, I will find out when and where I will ship out! Exciting things are headed my way!