My hands may be SMALL, but my ideas are BIG


Obama's Acceptance Speech

On Thursday, August 28th at 11:00 AM, I began to head through the many security checkpoints, picked up my credentials as a vendor, and began the walking path to Invesco as no one could park within miles of the site. As a vendor I wasn't able to bring a camera and I had to remain professional during my work, but I still had an amazing, first-hand account of this historical event. The following is what I saw, found, and heard...
Barack Obama didn't go on until 8:00 PM that evening, but I had a long day of preparation and attending to the VIP Suites at Invesco field. There are 131 private luxury suites, at Invesco that overlook the field and fill about 14-20 people. For this convention they were granted to big donors, party officials, and celebrities. The Denver Post stated that "corporations such as Xcel Energy and MolsonCoors, which have donated more than $1 million to the Denver committee hosting the convention," were granted access to the suites. I was a Suite Attendant, which meant I did everything and anything for the guests. Included in my wing of 17 suites was Senator Joe Biden's family, and Vermont Governor Howard Dean and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (whom I actually watched Obama's speech live with in their suite, ILOVERMONT!)

Celebrity sightings and chats included:
Kanye West
Black Eyed Peas
Actor Kal Penn ('Kumar' and in Van Wylder)
Jimmy Carter
Mary J. Blige
Star Jones (The View)
Hillary and Bill Clinton
And my personal favorite, Oprah Winfrey!

As the time neared for Obama to speak, the crowd was hushed. They knew what was coming, and the mile-long lines, security, and hot sun didn't seem to matter anymore. Triumphantly, as he was introduced Obama strode out to the podium, facing the estimated 80,000 Invesco viewers, while an additional 38 million viewers tuned in. This Washington Post article noted, his speech was the most watched convention speech, ever. Live at Invesco, everyone was drawn to cries of happiness, as they chanted "Yes we can! Yes we can!" Watching from the suite above, my view was beautiful. Thousands of American flags were waving in the air, lights flashing, and goosebumps rose up my arms as a feeling of pride and hope washed over me.

Obama humbly accepted his nomination by stating: "To Chairman Dean and my great friend Dick Durbin, and to all my fellow citizens of this great nation, with profound gratitude and great humility, I accept your nomination for presidency of the United States." And the crowd that outdid Kennedy's acceptance speech in 1960, in Los Angeles, went wild.
Obama said that "the greatest risk America could take," would be to continue the politics of the past eight years by voting Republican once more, an echo of former running mate, Hillary Clinton. He declared, “We need a President who can face the threats of the future, not keep grasping at the ideas of the past.”

I felt the real feeling of history, breathing before me, through Obama. He promised to "end US dependence on Middle East oil, focus on renewable energy, 'take out' Osama bin Laden, tax cuts for 95% of US families, world-class education for every child, and affordable health care for every Ameican." These promises were chilling, infused with idealism, pertinent details, and hope.

I feel blessed and lucky to have seen this live. Even after 12 hours of moving on my feet without food, I was running on pure adrenaline and the wave of power at Invesco, delivered through the American people and Barack Obama, himself.

Now is the time. Yes we can, yes we can.

Democratic National Convention Day 1 (double shift)

What an experience I've had this past week at the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Denver. The city was bustling with excitement and surging with power. I think 50,000 people arriving from around the country for this 2008 pivotal election year brought this monumental and moving convention to Denver .

I worked three separate events at the DNC this past week. The first was on Tuesday, August 26th with the Latino Leaders Network (LLN) at the Denver Performing Arts Center. LLN is a "non-profit organization whose mission is to develop ongoing opportunities to bring leaders together to establish relationships and dialogue on issues important to the Latino community." This luncheon series was a tribute to Federico Peña, former mayor of Denver and Secretary of Transportation and Energy during the Clinton Administration. I was impressed with Peña's determination and eloquence. In 1983, Peña defeated a 14-year incumbent, William H. McNichols, Jr. to become the first Hispanic Mayor of Denver, to which he was re-elected in 1987.

Speakers included Governor Bill Richardson (Governor of New Mexico, former runner for President), Senator Ken Salazar, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Texas Senator Leticia Van de Putte, and National Council of LaRaza (NCLR) President Janet Murguia. Follow this video link for coverage and speeches. I also may note that I served Eva Longoria as she was seated front row center, in my section! She was very sweet, beautiful, and short (even with those 4-inch heels).
Mickey Ibarra (founder) and Eva Longoria, a regular supporter at LLN events

Later that night, I headed to Invesco Field at Mile High where the Denver Bronco's play. This was a private, VIP party for delegates from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Hillary and Bill Clinton showed up (this was after Hillary's speech at the Pepsi Center). Both of them spoke, and I was right next to the stage so I had a great view. Hillary urged her delegates to take a stand, and no longer remain under a Republican Party President. And to end, she graciously thanked them for her support, as most of the people I saw that night were decked out in Clinton gear. Will they listen and make the crossover to Obama supporters for the vote in November?


Democratic National Convention

Just a heads up--this week I'll be in Denver working the Democratic Convention.

I am staying with friends during the week, and will be working double shifts at various venues around Denver with a catering and event company, Epicurean Catering. They're in charge of all the catering for the entire convention. Stay tuned for pictures, my experience, celebrity sightings, and of course, political insights from the Democratic party (an insiders view).


Rocky Mountain National Park

My first few weeks here have been filled with fresh explorations in which I am wide eyed and exuberant about life. This would include: farmers market, finding the necessary hole in the wall coffee shop, staring at awe at the breathtaking mountains, exploring Boulder's vibrant and eclectic culture, meeting new friends (and potential employers), and settling into my new abode. Amongst all the busyness, I have taken it upon myself to hike, hike, hike & take advantage of Boulder's 300 days of sunshine per year weather.

A great family friend, Kimana who is now living in Boulder decided to accompany me and take a drive up to Estes, Colorado: Rocky Mountain National Park with her children, Johnny and Sara. There's a lot of trails to choose from, so we picked one side of the mountain: Wild Basin. We picnicked and then began our hike where the trailhead began at 8,500 feet, so my elevation adjustment has begun! Lining the trail were beautiful cascading falls, and the aromatic smell of fresh air and pine was so delicious I wanted to capture it in my pocket to have with me always.

It was the first of many hikes I'll be enjoying here. Enjoy the pictures...
Kimana, Sara and JohnnyCaught mid-jumpCalypso Cascade


My Boulder Digs

Within a day of being in Boulder, I knew I had found the place to live. Thank you, Craigslist!
It's a beautiful house, in a great neighborhood with three other roommates: Cassiope and Monica, (Seniors at CU, art/anthropology majors) and Andy, a grad student at CU. We get along great, and I have the whole downstairs to myself with wood floors, my own bathroom, and I love the location. We're at the base of the Flatirons on 10th and Baseline. You can google map that and see the area I live on through entering "10th and Baseline, Boulder, CO 80302"

I am right near Chautauqua, a beautiful park, which "adjoins Open Space and Mountain Parks on two sides," which includes trailheads for hiking the Flatirons at my doorstep (I'm literally 30 seconds walk away). In the summer there's live music as an event space, people camping, picnicking, and eating at the restaurant.

Here are some pictures and a video "tour" I took with my new Flip! video. I start outside with our dog, Erryn and Cassiope in the garden then head inside. Turn up your volume.

I've also attached a few photos of my room and the house for visuals.


Boulder Bound

I like to think that 'Fortune Favors the Bold.' I am shaped and fashioned by this phrase. So, here I find myself...

After packing up my Honda Accord, with determination and zest I find myself in Boulder, Colorado. I-80 from Southeast Iowa is a straight-shot into Boulder. In fact, I drove with my pinkie and/or knee the entire time. The landscape is vast and expansive, quiet and desolate. But the sky opened up, almost like it was drawing me in. Ready for my new adventure, new home, new job (in the works) and next step in life.