FNN Takes Dallas: Day 2

 DAY 2, NOVEMBER 17, 2017

Today started at 6 am when my alarm clock vibrated and played one my favorite songs "It's Cool" by Jhene Aiko. I got up from the bed, picked out my outfit for the day and headed to the bathroom to get dressed, take my rollers out and do the rest of my morning routine. After I was ready for the day, I headed down to the lobby with Ariana and Katherine to the hotel’s breakfast walk in Morsel's. I ordered a breakfast tea, parfait and cinnamon roll. After everyone in the group got their breakfast, we started walking to our first day of the convention. The convention was held at a hotel about five minutes away from ours. As soon as we got into the convention, we had to sign in and get our badges so that we'd be able to explore. We received our badges, took few group photos and began to explore the convention. For the next few hours, we checked out several college booths and tables, participated in a scavenger hunt and took several pictures. Talking to professors, college advisors and other student journalists let me see different perspectives on journalism and what it means to different people. A scavenger hunt also taught me a little about Dallas and specific software used in certain yearbooks which I appreciated. For lunch, we ate at "Texas Spice" a restaurant on the hotel’s first floor. My panini was great. After eating we dropped our bags in our room and headed back to the convention for about another hour. Tsion, Ariana and I colored and placed the final pieces in a mural put together by everyone who participated! The group met back up in the convention’s lobby. Then we head back to the hotel where emotional rollercoasters were soon to come. The majority of the group besides the chaperones decided to go to the boys’ room where we found that their stuff had been moved and tampered with. Apparently, Tsion's sweatpants had been removed from his bag and placed somewhere else in the room, Michael’s PS4 system had a missing piece and he couldn’t find his Vans. Tsion’s sweatpants were found moments later but Michael’s items were still broken and missing. He called his mom to make sure he didn’t leave his shoes at home and when she told him they weren’t there, frustrations and rage poured out of Michael. He threw his phone across the room which scattered and he let out cries of anger. This was my first time ever seeing Michael this upset or angry. I was shocked and scared, to say the least. After he cooled off, Michael explained that those shoes were the last thing his dad got him before passing which is why he was so angry that they were missing. The sentimental value of those shoes was worth way more than the shoes themselves. We filed a report and informed the hotel of the situation and then the investigation began. The manager came in and took pictures of what happened and asked a few questions. Since it wasn’t my business and I didn't want to get too involved, I started typing my Day 1 Journal entry. While everything was getting settled Flo advised us to type and finish our entry and make sure we knew which workshops we wanted to attend. After the report was filed and the hotel kept working to find a solution, we all decided that we wanted to order pizza since it was quick in simple. Since I was the only one with UberEats, I was in charge of ordering the food. While I ordered pizza, everyone else met a group of ladies who were retired from the Air Force and were in Dallas to celebrate one of their birthday’s. I’m upset that I didn’t get a chance to meet them but from what I heard they were lovely women and I hoped they had lots of fun. Flo, Ariana, and I waited in the lobby for the pizza and the boys went to 7/11 to get drinks. When everyone was back, we ate our pizza and listened to music, then got ready to go to the pool. Around 9 o’clock everyone went down to the pool until the time it closed. We sat around the fire like the night before to warm up, headed to our rooms, showered and got settled to prepare for the last day of the conference. Before I fell asleep, I made sure I had everything packed so that I could just grab it in the morning. I fell asleep around 11 pm and had a peaceful sleep.                                                                        -Kiani Bell

Day two in Texas, in my opinion, was the best day here. We started the day off with the college exhibits. We met a lot of new people from different colleges. We signed offers to come to their colleges for tours and workshops. We took a lot of pictures that day. We conversed with a lot of kids. We arrived there and saw that there was candy on the table so we all instantly went for it. We saw Ms. Kaufman who had our name tags but the only thing was she spelled our names wrong. We went and changed them and continued to walk around. We met this great photographer named Mike. He was a phenomenal photographer. Everything he did he had number one in it. Then we proceeded with the convention for another hour or so. We went on a lunch break at the restaurant in the hotel. After we ate, we went back to the convention. We continued going to workshop until the evening. We were excited to learn the fundamentals of journalism. After the convention, we came back to our hotel room and found out Michael’s Van shoes were stolen. We sat a while in the room to file a complaint with the front desk. They sent security up to try to handle the situation. During the next 30 minutes or so, we planned to order pizza for dinner. After the ladies ordered pizza, we gentlemen went to 7/11 to pick up some soda to go along with our pizza. It was such a funny walk back to the hotel. As we returned, we went upstairs shortly after getting a text saying the pizza arrived. We went to the rooms and ate and drank. A couple of minutes later we decided to go to the pool for a bit. As the usual, I sat the bar on the phone with my “special” friend as they enjoyed their swim. At approximately 10:00 pm they left the pool. I left a little earlier. Everyone returned to their rooms but Mike and I had a plan to roam the halls looking for people and events going on. We were unsuccessful so we returned back to our rooms and went to bed.                                                            -Jayland Fowlkes

The next day we woke up around 6:00 and got ready for the day. After we all ate, we made our way to the convention. At the convention, we met a lot of people like a well-known photographer Mike, who gave me some good tips. Like how to use a index card to help fix the white balance.  After meeting Mike, Jay and I went to try to pick up girls. On our mission to get girls we ran into Mr. Frost. Well, everyone knows him as Mr. Foster but for some reason he allows me to call him Mr. Frost. Mr. Foster (Frost) gave us some advice on meeting new people and how that could evolve into valuable long-distance friendships that could be quite useful when I am visiting a college in the hometowns of my new friends. Sadly we only got two girl’s Snapchats. Then we want to a workshop about how to use a drone for videos. At the end of the day, everyone took a group picture. Later on, we went to the pool and met some new people.Flo, Frost, Tsion, Kiani, Ariana, Katherine and I were in the hot tub where we met up with the kids from New Jersey. After some time we were told that the hot tub was closed so we got in the pool and partied. We stayed in the pool till it was time to go to our rooms. After I got out of the shower, Jay and I went to see how was having a party. After looking around for what felt like an hour of looking, we saw two girls who told us that there was at the dance and it had just ended. I was heartbroken.    -Michael Williams

We woke up really early like we were going to school and went down to breakfast. I ate a sausage, egg and cheese sandwich with a vanilla mocha. After breakfast, we went to the convention to tour through the workshops and the college booths.  We all broke up into groups. I was in a group with Tsion and Kiani. Tsion, Kiani and I did a scavenger hunt which was really fun. After the college booths, we all met up with each other and went to one workshop together. The workshops was mainly designed for us to comprehend the importance of taking pictures up close to capture the moments of the event. After the workshop, we got something to eat from Texas Spice, a restaurant  inside the hotel. I had a burger with a side salad. The burger was very messy but good. The salad that I had was not good at all. On the way back to the convention, Katherine made an announcement that she needed to go up to the hotel. She was supposed to meet us but she never came back. On the way back from the convention, we waited on Katherine to come back to the hotel because she had the key. So we went to the boys’ room to wait.There we found out that someone took Michael's shoes and almost broke his PS4. We went to the swimming pool again and had fun. This time I got in the pool and had a good time and then went back to the hotel, packed up and went to sleep.                                                  - Ariana Lucas

I awoke at 5 am to start getting ready for breakfast. I washed my face and prepared everything to leave for the day. It was during this time I figured out that the conditioner that I used last night left a gray cast on my hair. After giving up on trying to fix my hair, I went with Ms. Merritt to get breakfast. We went to this place called “Morsels” and I got a sausage, egg, and cheese sandwich and a green tea matcha latte. The sandwich didn't meet my expectations but the latte exceeded them. That was my first time trying a matcha latte and I was pleasantly satisfied. We then walked to the JEA convention at the Reunion Center. There were college and yearbook vendors all around us. Ms. Kaufman gave us our convention passes and I found it funny that she spelt various names wrong when she was given a list. Some of them didn't even have a last name.

Katherine immediately began looking into possible opportunities for our team and kept bothering us about them. Kiani and I started walking around and eventually got involved in a scavenger hunt to get a free t-shirt. We then began looking at the college booths that were represented at the convention. I really liked Temple University and a school in Canada because Temple had a VR presentation and the one in Canada was really intriguing. I went to almost every college booth before lunch at “Texas Spice”. I got a huge burger and some fries. We then walked back to the convention where Ms. Merritt, Kiani, Ariana, and I went to a workshop that dealt with photo composition. The workshop was really short and one thing stuck out to me. The speaker said that using the color gray while editing photos was a great way to get everyone’s skin tone to show properly. After that workshop, I went back to the college booths to look at the rest of them. By the time I was done, the bag that I was using to hold all the pamphlets was filled to the brim. When the group proceeded to leave, Kiani and I ran back to get extra shirts. After that we walked to the hotel. Three hours later we met a nice group of ladies across from my room. They were celebrating a woman's 49th birthday. We had an interesting conversation that was pretty cool. One of the ladies actually did yearbook in high school and we thought that was very cool. Then we ate pizza that barely had any tomato sauce on it. When we were finished eating, Katherine and I wanted to go to the pool but Ms. Merritt was freaking out saying that we have to wait thirty minutes. Finally, at 8:45 I made my journey to the pool. I met a group of three white girls and we began talking about where we were from. Fifteen minutes later Ms. Merritt, Kiani, Ariana, and Michael finally came to the pool. We chicken fought, and I tried to do a handstand in the pool. We got in the hot tub and then we talked with some people. The lifeguard told us that the pool closed at ten so we played for a few more minutes before we left to dry by the fire. I left first to go upstairs, shower, and fix my hair because I got wet again. After that I just prepared for tomorrow and hung out with Ariana until I fell asleep.              - Tsion Cummings