Ms World was a fantastic event. However, it left me completely drained - physically and emotionally. Being that this was the first time I had judged a contest, and despite the warnings from those who have gone before me, I was ill-prepared for how much it would take out of me. It was incredibly hard to make judgements on the four contestants, all of whom are amazing individuals who deserved their moments in the spotlight.
I also didn't realize how heavy our schedule would be. Early mornings, lasting throughout the day. Lots and lots of work. I took my opportunities for fun when I could, but in the end, I was so wiped that I didn't have the energy to enjoy fully what was put in front of me.
That said, it was an incredible honor to be invited. The judging panel I sat on was an amazing group of individuals, and I look forward to seeing every one of them again in the future. I have a lot to learn from all of them.
What was interesting was the realization of just how young I am. Often I say how old I feel. On the judging panel, I truly recognized my youth. I saw how much more experience people had than I. Which didn't make me feel bad at all... actually, it somewhat energized me. It's nice to recognize that there is so much more to learn and live. Becoming jaded is never good.
In the end, Michele Jackson, Ms San Diego Leather, took the shawl with a platform to teach ASL across the country to leather groups and clubs. It completely shone through that this is her life's passion. It is what she does, eat, lives, breathes. I think she will do the Ms World Leather shawl proud.
I left Vegas on Sunday night on a red-eye flight back home, was able to spend two hours at home before I hit the subway and made the trek to work. By the time I got back home, I lied down, and as soon as my head hit the pillow, I was out.
Future travels which will surely create LJ posts - Inferno, and teaching two classes at CAPEX in North Carolina on September 24-25.