Anytime you get a group of 21 recent college grads together, it’s probably going to be a good time, and that’s even more true because of the fun, outgoing personalities of the 21 Peanutters and Hotdoggers. Plus, the other Peans and Wiens are the only people who truly understand what our job entails, so getting together always means tons of catching up and stories with people that oddly feel like family.
Although we stayed in Madison for the whole week this time, our bosses had a lot of fun things planned for us. We played a huge, intense game of White Elephant (I ended up with the legendary Connor Gray pillow – the best present in my opinion), hit the downtown Madison bars for a night out and had a sweater decorating contest and fashion show. On top of all of that there were multiple corporate-funded lunches and dinners and business items like creating a recruiting video for next year’s class. We also finally found out who the winners of the big Peanutter Challenge Week were (see post from Palm Springs) and the Westies came out on top!
While Winter staff was extremely fun as always, it was also kind of a weird time because it was a transition from first to second half, so while we were wrapping up and saying goodbye to our old partners and regions, we were also gearing up to hit the road with our new partners. In the spirit of this, I’d like to do the same thing with this blog post and summarize my first half and let you know what’s in store for me in the last few months of this job.
Westie Besties Wrap-Up
In short, my time out West with Elise and Conner was the time of my life. Probably more than any other team in our program, the three of us spent nearly all of our time together, and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. After not only all of the cool experiences we shared together, but also all of the long, monotonous work days, I’ve learned just about everything there is to know about these two and could endlessly spout off random facts (for example: Elise’s tonsils spontaneously grow back and Conner doesn’t know actual song lyrics 99% of the time but makes them up as he goes). While It’s not uncommon to make friends with your coworkers, it is uncommon for your coworkers to become your family, but after 7 months of E&C being my listeners, advice-givers, workout buddies, fellow partiers and endlessly more, that’s exactly what happened.
Aside from getting to know the two of them as individuals, we also made an amazing team. We all went into the job with the same mindset: we were super grateful to have this opportunity and we wanted to make the most of every single day. And that’s exactly what we did.
Here are some of my favorite things from this half:
- Biking the entire city of Pierre, SD
- Getting front row seats in a random lady’s house for the 4th of July Fireworks
- The money given to us to help others by a reporter in Rawlins, WY
- Meeting Madi Grover and Gregory Plaza in Phoenix, AZ and having a SHELL of a time every time we came to the area
- Our epic 15-hour day in Disneyland fo FREEEEEE
- Working golf opens in Portland and Boise
- Making multiple rap music videos and discovering Damien (Ner’s alter ego)
- Hiking in nearly every city we visited
- Staying in a B&B and convincing ourselves the house owner was evil
- Buying Lawrence the Uber driver a McChicken
- Eating endless bruschetta and fondue w/ pretzel bites at Postino & Culinary Dropout
- Wine tasting in Napa Valley
- Challenge Week & Mr. P’s legendary dance competition victory
- Meeting Tenor, the only cat I’ll ever not hate
- BRUNO MARS CONCERT
- Ice skating with Mr. P
- Seeing the Redwoods for the first time and taking an unintentional 6-mile hike
- James Corden & Conan live taping
- Private Ginuwine concert in Vegas
- Making friends with the ladies who twerked on our NUTmobile
- & probably a million more things I can’t think of at the moment
At the end of every work day, we leave our boss an “audix” which is a voicemail telling her about the day. On our very last audix as a team, after we sang a parody of “California Gurls” by Katy Perry, I wanted to thank my boss for how awesome this job has been so far. I told her I could never repay her for introducing me to two of the most incredible people I’ve ever met. I also told her I couldn’t have asked for more positive partners who laughed with me when times were both good and bad and who made me a more confident, well-rounded individual and taught me new things about life and myself each and every day. It may have been extremely cheesy and cliche, but it was nonetheless entirely true.
Out with the old and in with the new, right? I have yet to mention that ya girl is coming home for second half to the Central Region. I’ll definitely miss the west, but if there’s one thing that was missing from my experience, it was getting to meet up with a lot of people I know and being closer to home. I also will be traveling in a new nut: Grandma Ro-Shell. Ro-Shell is the original NUTmobile, which means she is not quite as decked out on the inside as Shelly was. Therefore, we also get to travel with a chase car, which means double the driving, but also always having a mode of transportation that is not a nut. You win some, you lose some.
A new region and new nut also means new partners! I’ll be staying with Conner for the rest of the year, and like me, I feel confident you all are well-acquainted with him by now. My new girl partner, Tanaja (or you can call her Tasty T, Tanut or Trail Mix Tanaja) is a Chicago native, Mizzou grad, and spent the first seven months of her tour on the East team. Tanaja can be what some would call “boujee” meaning she likes the finer things in life, and she is definitely the best person to pick out a place to get food/drinks and has a great sense of style. I have high hopes that her stylish ways may miraculously rub off on me, as well as her ability to save money on the job since she did a much better job of this than me and my previous team. All in all, Tanaja is an extremely strong, kind and interesting person, and it’s already been nice having someone new to get to know!
Some of my goals for the new half are:
- Continue to rock it at media and win the March Media Challenge
- Take more of a front seat vs. back seat role in interactions at events (this was hard sometimes because Elise and Conner are the friendliest people on the planet)
- Save more money $$$$
- Even though I’m less excited about the Central Region than West, I want to continue seeing everything I can and finding the cool things about every city
- Work out more consistently and eat healthier (although eating is part of traveling to me soooo we’ll see about that one. Texas queso will be my downfall.)
- Stay more up to date with my blog
- Book a Euro-trip for June & start looking for jobs and apartments in Chi City
- Keeping having a BOMB time so that second half is the time of my life just like first half
Because this post was already extremely lengthy and all over the place, I’ll spare you any sort of conclusion to tie it all together. What I will say is I’m excited to keep sharing my adventures with you, and huge thanks to all of you who have continued to read this far!
Cashew on the Trail (Mix)!