Last year – when I was a reader of The Inside Word rather than a writer for it – I read Bryan’s post about the perks associated with being a blogger. Let’s just say if I wasn’t dead set on it before that post came along, I certainly was after the fact.

One of the events Bryan mentioned was the Blues Awards, which he had gone along to as an interviewer. It sounded swish: full of great food and inspirational stories of student successes both in New Zealand and across the world. The Blues Awards operates under three different sections: Sports, Arts and Culture, and Service and Leadership, with major awards throughout the categories to cap off the night.

As you can imagine, it’s an event I decidedly wanted to be at – as a media correspondent or eventually as an awardee – so when the email came through asking me if I wanted to rep the blog at the Blues Awards 2017, you bet I jumped on that chance! (I distinctly remember my response containing about seven exclamation marks and very little punctuation otherwise…)

It’s been about a month since the ceremony now, but I can still remember the night so vividly: an absolutely delicious three-course dinner (presented rather differently than meals at student halls, though handled by the same company), glorious live music (either by full concert bands, vocal duos, or one particularly talented solo violinist who busted out pop culture bangers, including Hedwig’s Theme), and majorly inspiring company. I was tasked with running the University of Auckland Snapchat account for the night, and interviewing a bunch of top award winners, as well as anyone I could sidle up to throughout the night. (Shout out to the Debaters for reeling me in.)

I’d like to say a huge thanks to Jo and Alex for letting me be part of the entourage for the evening, and cheers to Carol Hirschfield for the name drop at the start of the night. (Now to get a mention at an awards night for actually winning something…) Whoever the lucky future blogger is who gets to go next year: you will have an incredible time! It’s an overwhelming night, but so, so worthwhile.

And, with that, I return to revision.

Catch ya on the flip side!