MAWC 2014!!!

On lunch break at the MAWC2014.
Can you spot me? : ) *

I am changed.  I didn’t know how much of an effect this World Conference would have on me, but I am definitely so pumped and excited for the upcoming weeks, months, and year!  I can’t wait to get started and I can’t wait to grow with my team.  Great things are happening. 🙂

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We left Toronto right on time! A snowstorm was on route that day; it was so bad that it was declared a snow day! No school!

On Wednesday, February 5 at 2 a.m., around 70 of us young entrepreneurs got ready to go to Toronto Pearson International Airport to fly to Miami.  A couple of us had connecting flights while the rest flew direct flights.  I’m not very fond of connecting flights because it’s a hassle to go from one flight to another when I can easily just hop on one flight and get to my destination.  Alas, it worked out and our team arrived at the airport, lined up (we were the first flyers there on a snowy morning and the security lines weren’t even open yet!), and got through customs with relatively little difficulty.  Aside from the Trip to China 2013 with the Mon Sheong group, this was my first time travelling with so many fellow friends and acquaintances!  It was so exciting. 😀

Our first view of Miami upon landing.
For many of us, it was our first visit to this city! 😀

A number of us landed in Atlanta where we waited for our connecting flight to Miami.  We were all sleepless since our first flight was at 6 a.m. and since we had arrived at the airport at 3 ish a.m,, there was no sense in sleeping the night before.  I tried to sleep on the chairs on the Atlanta airport, but didn’t get much zzz’s.  Instead, I chatted with Ray about the business and he also told me who his top 3 influential people were.  I was very motivated and inspired.  Also, I was disappointed that the Atlanta airport didn’t have free wifi.  What the heezy!

The view from our hotel room.
Blue skies, clear water, beautiful weather!

After around 2 hours flying from Atlanta, we finally arrived in sunny and hot Miami!  Our group met up with several others from the team and hopped into a cab to get to b2 downtown miami where we would be spending the next 3 nights.  It was pretty exciting to walk into that hotel lobby and see familiar faces from our team who had already landed in Miami.  SOOO exciting!  (Even though I’m writing this blog entry days after the trip, I can still relive and feel the excitement. 😀 )

Grace and I settled into our room with our three other roomies.  After a quick change and freshing up from 6+ hours of travelling, we met up with the team and grabbed lunch at Bayside Marketplace.  The Philly Cheesesteak I had was pretty good.  Most of us were too hungry to care what we were eating at that point since it was way past 3 p.m.  After that, we headed back to the hotel where we took a cab to Miami Beach!!  Walking in the sand with my bare toes, I could definitely tell the difference between the sand in my recent trip to Punta Cana and the sand at Miami Beach — it was more coarse, white, and grainy.  Since we arrived close to sunset, the sand wasn’t burning hot either.  We managed to catch the sun set and wallowing at the shore with my toes in the sand and water was pretty spectacular. ^_^

Palm trees lining the median strip

Miami Beach at sunset

At night, our gigantic group settled into Pelican Cafe for dinner.  The restaurant was able to offer our group a 20% discount which was nice.  However, we ended up waiting a long time both for our drinks and our food to arrive.  We were a bit peeved that some of us who had ordered first didn’t get the food first while others who ordered later actually received their food first.  Despite it all, we had a fun time especially laughing at the pizza orderers because their pizza apparently tasted like cardboard… lol.  My crab salad was tasty though and huge!  I liked my pina colada drink and I loved that there was free wifi at the restaurant too. 😀

Pina Colada & Crab Salad

Lovely people to my left

Our team dining at Pelican Cafe on the first night *

The next 3 days and nights marked the actual World Conference.  I’m not going to go into detail the events that happened since words mean nothing.  To experience the level of excitement, energy, and enthusiasm that the 70 of us witnessed and breathed in during the three days, you would have had to be there yourself.  I learned so much and took everything in.  It was inspiring to see JR and Loren speak on the stage.  Loren is such an amazing speaker and I can listen to her all day long.  I loved the mini dance breaks that we had at the beginning of every session and after lunch breaks.  It was like being at a concert and jamming and dancing to the upbeat songs. 😀  Learning about the new technologies and products that will be coming into the world was so exciting!  There were a lot of celebrities too that showed up like Fat Joe, Jamie Foxx, and basketball stars, Camelo Anthony and Scottie Pippen.  Another part I liked was how we gathered for lunch every single day — all 70+ of us with the top leaders and shared information and created even more energy for the team.  It was way cool.  I can’t even describe it.

The early bird gets the worm

One team One dream

I’ll fast forward to the final day of the convention where everything ended:  I was so sad to see it finish and the finale fireworks sizzle on the stage.  Everything passed by so quickly and I couldn’t believe that the 3 days were already over!  I would have loved to have even 2 more days of the convention just to soak up even more energy and information.  However, I would have also liked to have more sleep… since we had to wake up at 5:30 a.m. or so every day to get to the arena on time (and to line up!) and went to sleep late at night after the breakout sessions ended at 9:30 p.m., almost everyone was living on 2-4 hours of sleep per night.  I’ve never been so sleep deprived in my life, but I’ve also never been able to stay awake and alert for so long.  I’m very sure that the OPC and the Awake drinks helped.  Haha. 😉

JR, President & CEO

Pin level recognition: The best part of the conference.
I couldn’t keep my eyes off these hard-working individuals

Part of our team at American Airlines Arena
I got my tickets to the next convention. Do you have yours? 😀

On the final night, we had a “meeting after meeting” where we shared our thoughts of the entire convention.  Everyone also shared with the team their goals for the upcoming months.  I have my goal written down and I really hope I can achieve it by March 21, 2014!  (Not gonna tell you what it is; just ask me in person!) I felt so confident and pumped to speak with my team; it felt like I was floating on a cloud. 🙂

Beautiful Miami

The brilliant use of post-it notes that Jade assembled in our hotel room wall — all inspirational quotes to lead us forward!*

That night, we went to Bayside again to have a final celebratory dinner at Hard Rock followed by a quick trip to Nikki Beach.  Karyn and I had to get to the Miami Airport by 4 a.m. since our flight to leave was at 6 a.m. (again!).  At Miami Airport, I had my first heart attack moment ever… we had checked in and gone through customs successfully and had planted our butts down in the gate area.  I set my alarm for 5:30 a.m. since I was so exhausted and planned a 30-minute nap since we weren’t boarding until close to 6 a.m.  However… my alarm didn’t go off (or at least it went off and I didn’t hear it because I was that sleep-deprived)!  And Karyn didn’t set an alarm either!  She was woken up by a lady who missed our same flight and when Karyn woke me up, I looked at my cell phone and it was already 6 a.m.!!  There was no one around us anymore in the gate area.  I dashed up to the gentleman at the counter and asked him what happened to the flight.  He wasn’t able to give us any information at all.  We dashed to the TV screens where it showed us that our flight had already departed… at 5:52 a.m.  What?!!  How did we miss it?  We were sitting right there by the gate!!  I was in total freak out mode; this had never happened to me before!  We spoke to an agent and she was quite rude; informing us that she had called out the final boarding but no one came up.  Ugh.  In any case, we quickly went to the next gate where the flight would leave to New York at 7 a.m. and were promptly put on the standby list.  Sereen saw us from afar and couldn’t believe her eyes that we were there in the airport with her.  I couldn’t believe it either, frankly.  Luckily, within 10 minutes of waiting, we were taken off the standby list and given the actual tickets to board the New York flight to Toronto.  Phew!  Biggest scare of my life!  I’m so thankful that we were able to make it to the next flight and also to make it onto our connecting flight in New York.  I still can’t believe that no one cared enough to wake us up even though we were sitting in the actual gate and they fully knew that they were missing two passengers on the flight.  In any case, lesson learned!

In this case, Karyn and I were able to travel with a bunch of the 7 a.m. flyers from our team so it worked out really well.  Hehe. 🙂  We arrived back to Toronto at noon on Saturday, February 9 and Toby’s dad was kind enough to drive three of us back home.  That’s all for MAWC2014!  It was short and I miss the excitement already.  I told my team that I already am looking forward to Greensboro in the summertime.  Can’t wait!  Keep growing and keep learning. ^_^ Information + Application = Transformation!

Oh, and one more thing.  My absolute favouritest part of the convention was definitely seeing all the recognition segments.  It blew my mind to see so many fellow Asians and young people up there on the stage receiving recognition for those amazing pin levels.  We all hope to be up on that stage one day. 🙂  Also, I had so much fun chilling with everyone and getting to know many of my team members too!  Great trip!

Until the next convention!!*

*Thanks to Ronny, Matt, and Jade for the pictures! : )
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7 comments on “MAWC 2014!!!

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