Youtube, Awesomeness, a broken plane and a ton of screaming teenage girls
Yes, that title is an accurate description of my past few days. I was hired by a company called Green Buzz to work as a brand ambassador at Vid Con Anaheim, but nothing could have prepared me for the past few days.
To begin, my flight to Los Angeles from Tucson broke down mid air. Yes mid-air. I fell asleep as I usually do when I fly to wake up while we were in the air, sweating like no other. I thought it was odd for the plane to be so hot, so I put up to see if the air vent above me was open and it was, just no air. That was when the pilot came over the intercom to say, "the piece we need to fly, just broke so we will be making an emergency landing in Phoenix." As you can imagine, that went over well. So people start freaking out and the pilot comes back on and says how the pressurizer on the right wing had broken two days before, but now the left one broke and was leaking fluid which was also why he could not turn the air on inside the cabin. The captain then proceeded to ask that we close on the window shades to try and keep the cabin as cool as possible...when we were about to land in 120+ defies Phoenix... The air masks also came down. And for those who have asked, yes they do not fill up but you are still breathing.
Well we land and he tells us all to run off the plane as fast as we can for how hot the plane was and was going to get. Particularly for those who would be in the back of the plane as that is where it was hottest...and guess who was in the second to last row!
Anyways, we sit outside the gate waiting for news from our pilot. People were mad and freaking out, but the poor man working the ticket counter could not help us considering the airline system counted us as still in the air and he could not access any tickets. The pilot then comes out to let us know what was happening to only be told the maintenance is on the way. Even the flight attendants didn't know what was going on. Well at this point I knew I was going to be late, so I emailed my boss who I was supposed to meet at 5 that I wasn't going to make it on time. Fortunately he was incredibly understanding.
So I wait another half an hour for an update and start chatting with the flight crew, who let me in on that the problem was worse than they thought and a mechanic from LA was going to need to come out to fix it. At this point, I also overhear the poor desk clerk say that all flight with this airline and its associates were over booked for the day, so I went and booked a flight with another airline that would take me to Santa Ana airport. Finally, at 8 pm, I make it, over 7 hours later than originally planned(my first flight was supposed to land at 1pm).
And then I go to work. I arrive at the Hilton outside the Anaheim Convention Center to meet my boss and coworker. We meet and start networking. First people we start talking to are these magicians, who start doing these magic tricks for us. One of them used to work for Chris Angel, the other was from Europe with 9 million followers on Facebook. Something in particular that I learned from this exchange, is that I like watching magic, but I do not like being the participant in the tricks...at all. Like it freaks me out. But we finished the conversation and kept meeting people and hanging out till about 1:30 in the morning till we got to the airb&b.
Then we began the next morning at the convention. We got our badges and went inside, with no clue what to expect as none of us had ever been before. I don't think anything could have prepared us. There was so much going on and so many people. However, with all that was going on, there were a ton of interesting booths and experiences. One example being the wall from American Ninja Warrior and SnapChat auditions for The Voice.
That's when it happened. We were walking around when all of a sudden, a swarm of teenage girls ran by us screaming. They then proceed to run up to take photos, hug and meet a young teenage boy who could not be more than 14. I can not tell you how many times this happened over the past few days. But I must give props to these YouTube stars, they were great about it, taking time for their fans, pictures, and hugs being absolutely gracious.
We also had a fun time attending a bunch of the evening events. Thursday night we attended the YouTube party and VIP after party. Met a bunch of YouTube stars who were incredibly nice. One of the nicest people I spent a good amount of time speaking with was actually Phillip DeFranco. He gave me a ton of great branding and video advice as well as just being such a genuine person. If you haven't check out his show, I highly recommend that you do. Another absolute doll was Stef Sanjati, who came up and just wanted to tell me that I was pretty. Her eye makeup was absolutely amazing and she was too sweet. I saw her a few more times throughout the evening and she always said hello.
The following evening we went to the Awesomeness party to later be followed by the Fullscreen TV Hello after party. Both were great times full of dancing and meeting some pretty awesome(pun intended) people. The Fullscreen party was also held up on a rood overlooking California Adventure, with a beautiful set up.
The four days went by so fast, but was quite the experience. People were nice, there were great conversations, and tons to do. Business wise, I learned a lot from the meetings as well as some of the seminars I was able to sit in on about the video world. Hope y'all get to experience it next year!