How's fall on your end of the country? As the leaves turn color and the air gets chillier, I thought I'd bring you guys a little sunshine by recapping one of the most exciting weeks from my summer. Hint: It involved a business trip, a murder, and a visit from a former Bearcat.
Are you intrigued?
Fall leaves in Nevada
My summer in Nevada was full of new adventures, but August was by far my favorite month! It all started with a phone call from none other than Chad Meholic. Remember when I got lost in Nashville? Well, that gave us the idea to plan a trip. After catching up on the phone, the next day we spontaneously booked flights for Chad to come visit me in Reno. It was perfect timing because I was dealing with homesickness and Chad needed a vacation. Win-win situation.
Chad and I met my sophomore year after I transferred into Saint Vincent College. While I was deciding on a major, he was one of the major influences who encouraged me to take business classes. Five years later, I am so glad I did!
After graduating in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing, Chad moved to Nashville, Tennessee where he works as the Coordinator of Social Media marketing at CMT (Country Music Television). What a cool job, right? You can follow him on twitter here: @ (He just might re-tweet you!)
Proud McKenna Business students. Yes, we always wear matching suits!
Like all good business people, we began planning our trip. Does anyone else love agendas or is that just me? After looking over our calendars, we decided to do a long weekend in mid-August. This, however, would require some careful planning because I had a business trip and a performance the same week. Yikes!
August approached and it was time for the craziness to begin. After an early wake up call on Thursday morning, my cab picked me up at 4am and I headed to the airport to catch my plane back east.
During my trip, I worked from the Global Office in Pittsburgh and attended FLD orientation. This orientation brought the 2014 FLD class together from around the country so that we could meet each other and learn more about the company. There are 12 FLDS in total in locations such as Carrolton, Texas; Sylmar California; and Shelby, North Carolina. It was fun to learn about everyone's unique and interesting experiences in their assignments.
Between meetings, the week included lots of fun events like a Ducky Tour, Pirates Game and dinner outings. As an extra bonus, I also got to squeeze in some family time over the weekend. It's always fun traveling back to Pittsburgh as a tourist. You definitely see things in a different light and gain a greater appreciation for the area where you grew up.
That following Thursday, I flew back to Reno just in time to attend my evening rehearsal. This was when all the travel started to catch up with me, I was exhausted!
The next day, Chad flew in from Nashville and we got ready for my performance that night. He was attending as an audience member, which was super fun!
You know the murder I mentioned? Don't worry - no one actually got killed! I was acting in a Murder Mystery on the V&T Railroad. The play was called "Where's the Gold" and surrounded the death of Mr. Big, a charismatic businessman who everyone adored for his upbeat spirit and of course, his riches.
I played Rose Montague, an over-dramatic opera singer and actress, trying to make her big break. Would she "kill" for the chance to live the life of a star?
Rose and Mr. Big pose in front of the train
The murder mystery was a blast! It was by far one of the coolest acting experiences I've had. This show was extra special because I ended up meeting my best friends, Audrey and Nick, on the train. Chad sat with them during the performance and we all hit it off over dinner afterwards. The rest is history! We like to joke that fate brought us all together on a train in Nevada.
Audrey and I enjoying a summer day at the Marina
Finally, on Saturday our vacation began. We started the morning with brunch on the balcony. Don't let Chad take all the credit for cooking, I made the toast!
Then we spent the afternoon lounging by the pool... it's a hard life, but someone has to live it!
In the evening, we headed out to dinner in Reno. We had to take a tourist photo in front of the "Reno, Biggest Little City" sign (that's what it says under the blurred lights). I didn't quite understand that phrase until I lived here. The city is small, but it's really spread out. At least I think that's what it means.
Chad won big at the casino...
Sunday, we headed to Virginia City to spend a day in the Wild West. A twisting, winding road leads you up to this historical mining town nestled on top of a mountain. Established in 1859 with the discovery of Comstock Lode, Virginia City operated the first silver mine in the United States, creating a boom town overnight. Businessmen, politicians, and other prominent people flocked to the area to get rich off the silver and gold produced by the mine.
Naturally, Chad and I wanted to get rich too! So we panned for some gold.
Is he going to strike it rich?
Not quite...his gambling winnings may have been worth more. That's okay though, I still let him stay the rest of the weekend.
Next , we took a tour of a silver mine.
It was dark inside!
Then Chad got into some trouble...and I had to bail him out. What are friends for?
On Monday, we headed to Lake Tahoe-- of course we had to save the best for last! It was a beautiful day as usual.
For the first adventure of the day, we both tried stand up paddle boarding for the first time. I have zero balance, but Chad was a pro!
Umm..me, not so much. I was surprisingly doing alright until I slipped off into the freezing water. It was 66 degrees! Chad laughed and snapped pictures of me as I drowned...
I never said I was graceful! Next, we rode the Heavenly Gondola 9000 feet up a mountain. Did I mention I'm afraid of heights?
It was terrifying, I tried not to look down!
Once I got to the top I realized it wasn't so bad after all. The view was well worth it.
From business majors to young professionals, it has been fun to have my friend by my side through it all. Whether it's through a vacation or a phone call, the Saint Vincent community cultivates life-long friendships among Bearcats that help make your day just a little bit sunnier. Here's to many more memories to come!