Field Hockey (unknown location)
Synchronized Swimming (unknown location)
Look at the cool pin I got from Terry Schmidt, a super nice, old-school, cool photographer from the Bay Area – who works for UPI. Terry is actually one of the first people I met (outside of the Merc) when I moved to San Jose in 2000 – I was covering the US Open at Pebble Beach and he welcomed me to the Bay Area – still remember – it was on the first green I believe. 🙂 One of the things that used to be huge was trading pins amongst organizations and you’d use them to bribe the staff for favors (haha) but that isn’t as big of a deal since there are so few organizations here and the ones that are here don’t often make pins anymore – but it was fun to see in Greece – people were going crazy for the pins. So Terry gave me one of his sweet pins and was nice enough to give me limited edition pin in a hilariously cool ring box – haha:
Was planning on doing laundry in the morning but John talked me into doing field hockey instead – US versus South Africa. I had only photographed it once before in Greece, I think, interesting sport. It looks very uncomfortable because the sticks are so short they have to lean over and run at the same time – doesn’t seem like it would be good for the back. They just call it hockey here – I really enjoy covering hockey – this wasn’t too bad either – but much slower – but they aren’t wearing helmets (most of the time) so it’s good for facial expressions. They water down the field at half-time so that the ball moves around better – here is John enjoying it:
I was planning on covering synchronized swimming and the water polo and then track and field – but it turned out that we thought water polo was at 5:30 – but it really started at 15:30 which is 3:30 of course. Synchro started at 3:00… so impossible to do both. Went to MPC to grab some food – was hoping for the beef stew from the other day but they had fish and chips which didn’t look too great – so had to settle for a quarter pounder. Grabbed the bus and ran into Jed when we stopped at the Olympic Stadium -here he is waiting to get on (second from right):
We both were going to Synchro swimming – he had never shot it before – I’ve shot it a bunch of times but only above water, so we both decided to try it under water. It was cool – there were 24 teams competing – the US was 22! Each one was about 3-4 minutes, then a few minutes break – so it took quite some time to finish. It’s neat they have windows under water – the view is good as long as they are straight on – if they move the side of the window there is too much distortion in the glass. John popped down after he went to wrestling.
Afterwards we headed to track… John and I were ready to walk and Jed wanted to take the bus – we made fun of him. It’s about a 10 minute walk to the stadium from the Aquatics Centre – if we wanted to take the bus – it would have taken about 20 minutes – and that just if the bus happened to be sitting there… which it most definitely would not have been. We talked him into walking – and even though he was gripping (jokingly of course) he came to the conclusion that that was a good call. Headed out to turn three so I could see the pole vault and the runners go by, here’s my spot:
Pole vault was totally anti- climactic – one would think that in the finals that their last jump would win – well it is the last jump they complete – but it wasn’t the last jump. The jump that won happened a long time before the end of the competition. They keep increasing the height and if no one makes that increased height then the previous high is the winner. Hope that makes sense. So the winning pole vault the American completed was about an hour before they finished – so they finished on a bunch of misses. I was hoping that a pole vaulter would clear the bar and then freakout – but that didn’t happen. The lady from Cuba didn’t clear a certain height and so the US person won.
Waiting for Paulie, right, – Wally is also not finished – only a few of us left in the media center.
Ok, I’m going to go on a little rant here… So we walked out of the Olympic Stadium at midnight and went to the bus stop and waited, and waited and waited. There should be a bus every 10 minutes or so. Ridiculous because we saw four empty buses drive by. After 45 minutes Paul and I gave up and decided to walk – there was a sign that said “West Ham” station – so I headed in that direction – Paul went to Stratford International… well that ended up being a 30 minute walk! Sucks after a 14 hour day especially since there were a ton of stairs. John waited for the bus – it actually ended up being faster to walk… whoever “planned” the transportation here did a horrible job. So got back to room an hour later than I should have… oh well.