While onboard this year’s All Star Trip we had each member write down 3 facts about themselves and turn in their list anonymously. The three facts included a recent accomplishment/highlight in their career other than winning the All Star Award, a funny/crazy story that happened to them while traveling, and a quirky/goofy hobby/interest they have that others may not know about. Then we read them off to the group and they had to guess/spot the MAST All Star!  

Some Recent Accomplishments of the MAST All Stars:

  • Invited to lead a speaker series at the local library on travel
  • 35 years of marriage
  • Asked to interview for a local business magazine
  • Earned my ASTA Verified Travel Advisor certification
  • Received Fox Country Award for Top Agency in the area
  • Lasting 50 years in the travel industry
  • Received a spotlight article in recent Destination Wedding Edition of Agent at Home Magazine
  • Celebrating 60 years in business
  • Celebrating 30 years in business
  • Received from the Women in Business/Chamber from our town, the LEAP Awards (Leadership, Excellence, Achievement, and Professionalism)
  • Just became a Rocky Mountaineer Specialist
  • 3-time million dollar sales winner
  • Agency was named 1 or south eastern Wisconsin’s Top 30 largest female owned businesses

Some Funny/Crazy Stories of MAST All Stars While Traveling:

  • While in Peru, I witnessed our bus driver get spit on by a llama. Angry/embarrassed, he grabbed it by the neck and wrestled it to the ground, dusted himself off and scampered away.
  • Going for a bike ride in Vienna and mistakenly biking around an island that is frequented by locals who prefer not to wear clothing.
  • I was able to go into a sloth cage in Costa Rica because my daughter flirted with the La Paz worker and we touched the sloth!
  • My spouse and I signed up for a truffle farm excursion, disappointed there was no chocolate.
  • Lost children in a taxi in Shanghai. Found them. Crazy. Not funny.
  • I met Ozzy Osbourne in the Eiffel Tower. He was actually very polite, even though he had to ask Sharon repeatedly when his new album was coming out. Don’t do drugs kids.
  • I nibbled on a Viagra in Cusco to “fight off a headache”.
  • Watched my wife get hit by a car in Windsor, U.K.
  • Fell off the toilet in the Secrets Panama lobby bathroom. I went into the toilet followed by my drink.
  • During a wine tasting I spit a mouthful of wine onto the presenter (from laughing to hard).
  • Unknowingly ate pig stomach in Spain.
  • I got locked out of my room while sitting on the balcony in Argentina during the night accompanied by monkeys.
  • I am traveling with someone in the group whose 1st cousin I was married to many years ago!
  • I once saw the Dali Lama at LAX. Our son became very excited and wanted a photo. We tried to pretend we were just taking a photo of my son with the Dali Lama in the background. When we later looked at the photos, the Dali Lama was looking right at the camera with a huge smile on his face.
  • I was chased by military police outside the city of Son Salvador for being out past curfew the night before national elections.

Quirky/goofy hobbies/interests of MAST All Stars:

  • Thrill seeking/sky diving.
  • Goal of visiting all the Big Ten football stadiums.
  • I love to buy things on garage sale sites – including my current car!
  • Follow Professional Bull Riding around the country. Headed to one in November. Yee Haw!
  • Collecting rare and antique coins dated 18th, 19th century from the Russian Empire.
  • Barbershop Acapella Music performer. Chorus is currently 11th in the world.
  • Downton Abbey addict.
  • Been playing the piano for over 20 years.
  • I like recreating meals I ate on vacation at home from memory.
  • I was once a sheep shearer.
  • I collect Cuckoo Clocks.
  • I like to grow propagate orchids. I have an orchid hospital to take care of other’s “sick orchids”.

Take your guess at who each of these accomplishments/stories belong to! 

Amber Zakem

Amber Zakem has worked in the travel industry since 2014. Although, her love of travel began far before that. Amber grew up visiting cousins stationed throughout Europe and worked as an Au Pair in Germany for a year between High School and College. She started working at a local travel agency in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, after graduating from Central Michigan University. Amber began working for MAST Travel Network in 2016 and is the Social Media Specialist. She runs the MAST Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat and she teaches twice monthly webinars to travel agents on using social media to promote travel. Amber has continued her passion for travel and social media by also teaching a course at Moraine Valley Community College in their Hospitality program.