May the Odds Be Never in Our Favor: A Timeline of #MUNUM2014


1545020_813016558714272_1534124356_n     On Thursday January 16th, 24 students hopped aboard the 156 Bus headed towards Union Station. With bags in tow and position papers handy, the Latin School Delegation was eager to begin their weekend in Ann Arbor. Each year, a group of Latin’s finest is sent 241 miles northeast to represent the school at the University of Michigan’s Model United Nations conference.  What these students did not know at the time was the multitude of struggles they’d face along their journey. After arriving at Union Station on time, the group set off to gather an abundant amount of snacks for the four and a half hour train ride. When the students returned from the food-court with things ranging from Strawberry Fanta to Forbes, they were delighted to see passengers lining up to board. However, almost immediately after all students were accounted for, the Amtrak overhead speaker announced, “Wolverine train delayed, more information coming soon.” Three long hours and many food-court runs later, the disgruntled students gathered their belongings and boarded the train. The train ride itself was moderately tame aside from a few Latin passengers overheating (note to everyone: never wear heavy turtlenecks aboard Amtrak). However, the second the delegation set foot on the snowy Ann Arbor soil, things reverted back to chaos. Each cab ride got progressively worse as the night drew on. The first cab made it to the hotel safely around midnight. The second cab drove over a snow bank but somehow made it to the hotel in one piece. The third cab ended up at the wrong hotel and hiked back across town to rejoin the rest of the delegation. The fourth cab didn’t arrive at the hotel until after half-past one in the morning. In a Stockholm syndrome-esque manner, junior (and Club Head) Chris Quazzo declared “the train station is now my home.” After a thirteen hour commute, the Latin delegation gathered in in its entirety to scarf down some much deserved Dominos Pizza and Cinnastix (note: their headquarters in in Ann Arbor!!!). Armed with a half-off coupon and lots of empty bellies, the group devoured seven extra large pizzas. One delegate, immobilized by the amount of pizza they had eaten, almost had to be rolled up to their room. The next morning, the group bussed it over to Michigan Union and split up into its respective committees. Surviving nine hours of caucuses the first day, the delegates received a much-needed release with the Delegate Dance later that night. After deliberating the theme of their outfits, the USA/Bosnia and Herzegovina/Czech Republic/Peru/International Prosecutors rolled up to the dance in “sloppy Western Business Attire.” The Latin delegation took the dance by storm with their unbuttoned dress shirts and ties strung around their foreheads. Sophomore Tara Campbell wowed the crowd with her wobble and junior Michael Gross gave a break-dancer a run for his money. When the dance drew to a close, junior Zach Schenkman was so determined to beat the rush that he bolted out into the parking lot, slipping on ice and, unfortunately, fracturing his ankle. One urgent care visit and set of crutches later, the group survived another day of committee and gathered for dinner at a restaurant reminiscent of Flattop. After Celebrating two fake birthdays with an order of deep-fried Oreos and copious amounts of stir fry, the delegates returned to the hotel exhausted. The next morning, they attended the final committee session and set off for the Ann Arbor Amtrak station. Luckily, there were no delays on the ride back.  With nine awards under their belt, the Latin School pulled into Chicago victorious and, surprisingly, all in one piece. Despite the many curveballs thrown at them, the Latin School delegation remained resilient in the face of adversity and ultimately had a very memorable weekend.   When asked to provide a phrase that encapsulated their weekend, the following remarks were as follows:   Nathan Goldberg: “Through thick and thin, MUNUM never ceases to amaze and I always leave wishing for more time”   Josh Martin: “We came late, we saw, we conquered.”   Carli Kovel: “Despite a 13 hour travel day, being dropped off at the wrong hotel, and missing our first committee session, MUNUM14 was my favorite MUN conference.”   Chris Quazzo: “Train station until one in the morning. Late-night Dominos. USA! Send help.”   Mr. Tempone: “My time at MUNUM is about connecting with brilliant, ambitious students, some of which I don’t get to know on a personal level during the school year. It’s also about adventurous cab riding.”   Hedy Gutfreund: “Even though I didn’t know it was possible to spend such a disproportionate amount of time in train stations, i had a fantastic fourth and final MUNUM experience. From slaphappy laughter to ridiculous committee sessions, I’d say it was a successful trip.”]]>