Two Weeks to Explore
Yesterday was my last day working for Photo Services at the Olympics, as the time trial was the final event at the road cycling course. Although getting information for photographers was often difficult (more on that with tomorrow’s post), and communicating with Chinese volunteers proved a challenge, I really appreciated having the opportunity to work as an international volunteer for BOCOG.
Yesterday was a long workday -- we boarded the shuttle to the Great Wall around 6 a.m. and didn’t return home until just before 11 p.m. -- but it was great being able to work with photographers from around the world, and to watch six athletes join the ranks of Olympic medalists. I also had some time to watch the time-trial from the finish line, and saw both medal ceremonies from only a few feet away. I watched photographers make their way to the front to capture cyclist Kristin Armstrong (USA) as she received her gold medal, and sang our national anthem as the Star-Spangled Banner played for all in attendance.
After the second medal ceremony, I bumped (literally) into Chris Detrick, a college friend and photographer at the Salt Lake Tribune. I hadn’t seen Chris in about a year, so it was great seeing him on my (temporary) home turf. Over the past couple weeks, I’ve had an opportunity to meet some of the world’s best photographers as they passed through our photo workroom, and it was a privilege being able to enjoy the Olympics alongside them on the course.
BOCOG told my group of international volunteers that we would be working until the end of the Games, so we have some unexpected downtime before our flight home on August 28. The next few weeks will be spent exploring Beijing and the surrounding areas with photographers, and attending Olympic events. If you have any tips on cool places to visit, or have any questions about the city, please feel free to let me know.