Miss International 2005 - Sarah Wall is THE MOST captivating, charismatic, compassionate and 100% selfless and giving person I have ever met. To give you a visual picture...think of a young Courtney Cox with the heart as big as the moon. She just has a way of making everyone in the room feel at ease no matter the circumstances.
Monday: 8/24/05 (8a to 12p)- Morning appearance at Richard J. Daley College in Chicago. Giving a 3 hour presentation at a Youth Mentoring Summit. I had a blast speaking with the girls (ages 9-14) about all of the possibilities life has to offer no matter your financial or residential status.
8/24/05: 8pm - Miss International 2006 Delegate Orientation- The pageant staff and contestants were so incredible that all of my feelings of stress and nervousness went out the window. Afterwards, Caitlyn and I settled in to our hotel room (which we also shared with Miss TEEN Illinois International-Brittany).
Tuesday:8/25/06: Morning Appearance- Gurnee Mills: Autograph Signing. Today we have hours of endless shopping followed by an autograph session for visiting patrons...so much fun. Caitlyn and I hung out with Miss Michigan-Rebecca...who we discovered would soon become our sister java junky - craving Starbucks at all times.
8/25/06: Afternoon - a few hours of down time. Later that evening we all rallied on the super large coach bus and headed to Navy Pier (sadly only 1 hour of time was allotted). Somehow, Sara Wall convinced me to ride the Ferris Wheel...please note ,that I am TERRIFIED of heights (basically anything over 10 feet high) so you can imagine my joy and enthusiasm to riding this marvelous contraption. But I put on a brave face and lived through it (sigh of relief). She and I road the wheel with Miss Pennsylvania-Kelly & Miss Virginia-Whitney. I had so much fun, but like the ninny that I am forgot to bring my signing cards for Pier patrons. Being the hometown girl I had a lot of requests, which was so nice, but disappointing because I didn't have anything for them.
Wednesday: 8/26/06: Morning -Stage rehearsals and a "Free" day. Miss Minnesota-Becky, recommended this INCREDIBLE wholesale shop on Clark Street & Sunnyside...they sell drop dead gorgeous costume jewelry (a must for any pageant girl) for the cost of nearly nothing. She had the breathtakingly beautiful turquoise chandelier earrings that I also got for myself in red & purple for $15 each. Normally you find them in a pageant store for over $100/$150 easy. So, Miss Michigan-Rebecca and I made the trip to the store and felt like 2 kids in a candy store....SO MUCH FUN....TO MANY OPTIONS. I'm definitely going back ASAP. :-)
Thursday:8/27/06: Morning - the most important portion of the pageant...INTERVIEW (it's worth 40% of your score). I am very proud to consider the INTERVIEW portion my strong suit. I have been working with & for my platform "FULL CIRCLE: Learn, Live, Link" for several years (since losing my grandmother to Cancer). I know this bad boy in and out...I can always tell when I've "nailed" my interview...and sadly I did NOT get that feeling this morning (even when competing in the Miss America system(which are rapid fire questions, boom, boom,....they chew you up and spit you out) I felt more confident and assure my interview. I answered all questions asked to the best of my ability but for some reason I just didn't feel like I had enough time to really help the judges understand that I WANT and CAN DO the job of Miss International and that I'm extremely capable of working 250% with every fiber in being to get out there and make a difference in this world. I'm my worst critic so I tend to be a bit hard on myself, but this is serious business.
8/27/06: Evening -Teen International Prelims....GO BRITTANY!!! She's so beautiful. We were screaming & cheering so loudly for her my throat was killing me the next day. I can't remember if we had our Delegate Dinner (formal) on Wednesday night or Thursday after the prelims....but the food was great (hosted by the Daily Grill within the Skokie Northshore Hotel). I took a boat load of tres fabulous pics.
Friday: 8/28/06: Morning -Rehearsals..... Run through walking patterns for each phase of competition and the opening number...which by the way is amazing..Our singers and dancers are incredible..just WOW! I will have that music stuck in my head for months.
8/28/06: Evening: MISS Prelims...I'm SO excited....this is pretty much the less stressing part for me..just have be sure to remember to rock the stage and have fun! Caitlyn won (tied) the Fitness awarded w/Miss California Brittany Frick...who won every other prelim award (photogenic, evening gown, & fun fashion wear)..Congrats Brit!
Saturday: 8/29/06: THE BIG DAY.... Miss International Pageant. This is what I had been working, training and promoting non-stop for the past 4 1/2 months (and pretty much the past 7 years). I had a fab time...Caitlyn and I made the Top 10...along with Miss....California (the new Miss International 2006), Arkansas (1st RU), North Dakota (2nd RU), Virginia (3rd RU), Midwest (Caitlyn - 4th RU)......Remaining T10: Illinois (myself), Ohio, Utah, Florida (miss congeniality), & Georgia. It really was a high caliber of contestants who I did truly like and was happy for no matter who ended up with the title. I'm proud to have placed within the top 10 and WISH BRITTANY ALL THE BEST during her year as Miss International 2006. What's not to love? I've gotten to talk on the radio about my platform and promote the pageant, end up in a few newspaper articles and publicity photos during pageant week. I do miss my new friends...but thankfully we have been emailing each other...so I've have had nothing but good to gain.