Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Visit to Florida: Week 1

I just finished up a visit to Rollins College in Orlando, Florida--a school unlike any other that I've visited so far. I haven't been down to Florida in quite some time, maybe since middle school? When my family lived in North Carolina, we would take regular trips down to Florida, but I don't think we've been there since we moved to Illinois. I forgot how different the vegetation and climate are!

Rollins campus is absolutely gorgeous. Situated on a small lake in Winter Park (see the picture below!), it is very picturesque. Its no wonder that movies have been filmed there. Mostly recently was, "Sydney White," a sorority movie that came out just a few years ago. I haven't seen the movie, but I'm sure its nothing great. It might be worth seeing if only to get a glimpse of Rollins campus. I took a few pictures, but it doesn't do the campus justice. The Spanish style architecture and Spanish Moss trees are so beautiful!

Here is a picture of Rollins Hall, Kappa Kappa Gamma's house!

Here is a picture looking at the back of the Kappa house. Aren't the trees pretty?

During my week at Rollins, I had a lot of meetings. The chapter is struggling to get back on track, and I worked more hours there than I have on any other visit outside of recruitment season. There were a few afternoons where I had an hour break here or there, and I tried to get outside as much as possible. The weather was in the upper 80's and 90's all week, and when the college has both a pool and beach, its not something you can miss out on! I did end up getting a few faint tan lines, which I am very proud of.

The chapter did not plan many activities for me in the evening, which I was ok with. With so many meetings during the day, I definitely needed the time to decompress. I also got the chance to go out in town two nights. One of my girlfriends from high school, Carly, lives in Orlando now with her internship at Disney World. Her and I got together one night for frozen yogurt, and it was so great to see a familiar face and catch up! Last semester, Delta Zeta colonized a chapter at Rollins, so the have an Educational Leadership Consultant living full time on the campus. Her and I met on my first day at the chapter, and its always great to talk to other consultants on the road! She took me to Park Ave., a shopping and dining district right off of Rollins campus. We went out for a glass of wine one evening. Gosh do I miss wine!

On my last day at the chapter, I had the morning free, so I walked down Park Ave. to the Winter Park Farmer's Market. I absolutely love farmer's markets. I would always try to go when I lived in Omaha, but I usually slept in too late on Saturday mornings to make that a realistic goal. It was great to walk around and get some yummy food! I waited in line forever for famous bagels, and then got some fresh brewed ice tea at a stand on the edge of the market.

After leaving the farmer's market, I walked around Park Ave. a bit. There is a beautiful park in the middle of the district (probably how the avenue was named!), and it was fun to just sit and people watch.

There are also a lot of trains that go through this area!

On the way back to the chapter, I stopped at Origins to look at under-eye creams. Some nights on this job I don't sleep very much or very well, so anything I can do to look awake is a plus! The woman at the store acted just appalled by my face.

Lady: "Your pores are huge." (Yea, duh. Thanks for pointing it out.)
Lady: "You have sun damage." (No really, I don't. I'm very fair-skinned and wear sunscreen every day.)
Lady: "You must be using retinol, your skin is so dry." (Retinol is a prescription for acne and for wrinkles. No I don't use that. And no, my face isn't dry.)
Lady: "You're starting to get forehead wrinkles." (I don't want to think about it. Doesn't that start happening to everyone around this age?)
Lady: "You have terrible dark circles under your eyes. Is that genetic? Or do you just not sleep?" (Well gosh, I wouldn't say they are terrible. Are they really that bad?)

I know its all a scheme to get me to realize why I need their products so badly, but whew, thanks for the self-confidence boost, lady! She offered me a free mini-facial (obviously another way to prove the greatness of their products), and I accepted only out of boredom.

After my facial, she offered me the whole kit for the low price of $300. Haha, no thanks! I did end up walking out with $30 under-eye cream/brightener, but that is what I had gone in looking for.

All in all, it was a long week and a lot of work, but I hope the chapter learned a lot from my meetings and can use our conversations to help move the chapter forward. I'm going back to Rollins in mid-November, and I'm interested to see what the weather is like then! My friends from home will be jealous if I come back for Thanksgiving with a tan!

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