Not a whole lot going on this morning – which was good cause I needed a bit of rest. Women’s boxing was the first thing of merit – met John over there and we photographed from different spots. I haven’t shot a lot of boxing but I know ringside is typically the best. Here they only (as far as I can see) allow pool photographers (that would be the large agencies) a ringside spot – and there are only four ringside spots! Bummer!
I was running a little late and I knew space was at a premium at the boxing venue – which is in the ExCel building – but the photo workspace was super hard to find and it was super far away… so after I locked things up ran out there and went to a super high spot first – I asked a helper if there were any lower spots and he just shrugged his shoulders – so I scanned the stands and found a bunch of photographers and booked over there. Well the kinda low place was too low – realized once the fighters came out that they were really short! Like basically didn’t stand above the ropes! oh well. Shot a few bouts down there and then moved up. The lady from Ireland – Katie Taylor – was an obvious fan favorite, the crowd went nuts and she beat down the lady from Tajikistan pretty badly. Pictures weren’t that great – but not much I can do about that – positions stunk.
Afterwards met John in the main concourse – I got some pretty good Indian food. John couldn’t decide what he wanted so didn’t get anything – so I ate the food, curry and chicken, on the bus back to the MPC. Once we got to the MPC I went over to the medical center again – and they prescribed me another antibiotic because I still have a minor chest infection – said rest and sleep and the antibiotic will help… Well, I’ll be taking the antibiotic. She said that I should get it x-rayed when I get home, if I’m not any better. But today was much better than yesterday. I am excited to go home and get in my own bed!
Afterwards went upstairs to the photo workroom and saw John and Paul and Scott… I wanted to check and see if the 15mm lens that went missing was magically turned in – it was not. So it was most definitely stolen. ugh. Did a few things and then headed off to the bus, for the last time to go to beach volleyball, thank God! Pain in the butt venue. They drop you off a 1/2 mile from the media center – and then it’s another 1/4 to the venue.
Here’s something I saw at the pharmacy that nobody needs here – since it’s typically nice and overcast:
I got into the venue around 6:30 pm for the 9:00 pm game. I had forgotten that the bronze medal match was before the gold medal match and was wondering why everyone was heading out to the court… edited some images from boxing and then when I saw that David Eulitt was heading out, halfway through the second set, I decided to go with him – he hadn’t been there before so I figured I could show him how to get to the court – and I wanted to put up a remote up top. This is the view from where I put the remote – everyone took this picture -but it’s still pretty up there. The game is bronze medal game – by the time the USA vs USA game started it was pitch black:
As I was heading out I thought I heard my name and then I looked up and I saw my friend from college – Stephanie! She’s out here with her family, it was a little tough to talk to her cause they have loud music playing at the beach volleyball venue – but it was great to see her!
It was the USA versus the USA, but the USA that we cared about contained Kerri Walsh – a San Josian (is that a word?). She grew up in San Jose – so a true local. Sometimes we kinda stretch the word “local.” For example, someone might have gone to college for a year or two and moved on, they could still be considered “local.” Her and her teammate Misty have won the gold medal twice already, I covered their gold medal game at the last Olympics in China – because of NBC it was at 11 am and it rained and they won.
Tonight was another good, quick game for them and they won their third gold. So that was pretty cool. I set up a remote so that it was a bit of an overall and would show both teams and hopefully get something good. It was okay. I’m actually in this picture. If you can pick me out I’ll give you a penny:
Kerri was pretty good to photograph – nice and emotional. This was the fourth or fifth game that I had been to this Olympics. So far there had usually been about 6-10 photographers shooting each game – tonight I swear there were about 200 – it was completely nuts-bonkers at the end – she’s in there somewhere:
It took awhile once the game was over, they had to do some interviews, run around, then wait for the medal ceremony – they let us out in the middle of the court – here’s the view from center court as we are waiting for the ceremony to start:
After the awards ceremony they ran around some more and then finally they were done. I had to go up and get my remote – then head back to the media center to transmit. I was chatting with Robert Gauthier (from the L.A. Times) – he’s an awesome shooter and super nice guy – it was funny he was saying when he didn’t do well he transmits a lot. I said to him “I do the same thing!” Our rational is that you flood them with average pictures and hope that the editors see one that stands out – haha. But I’m sure he had a great game, it was just funny. By the time everyone was done it was after midnight. I suggested Super Star and Scott looked it up – it closed at 2. I figured i’d have to leave at 1:30 cause the Tube stops running at 2-2:30. So we walked about 10 minutes up to Super Star Chinese Restaurant – the third time for me!
Paul, Robert, Scott, his wife, David and I were there. We sat down at about 12:50… unfortunately at 1:20 the food hadn’t come so I asked for it to go. I left a little after 1:30 thinking I had plenty of time to make it to the Tube stop at Leicester – a five minute walk. When I got there it was closed – I was wrong – the Tube closes even earlier depending on where it is located! ACK! So I looked on my iPhone for the next closest stop – that was Tottenham Court Road… walked up there – it’s a little scary when you’re in a town you barely know, rolling with a crap ton of expensive gear and a lot of drunkards around and it’s nearly 2 in the morning. Tottenham Court Road was also closed – panic time!
Took a few deep breaths and was thinking about taking a bus, but had no idea where the buses went and then imagined myself riding the bus all night. Scott had mentioned some cab people that just stand on the side of the road (they are wearing official “cab” vests). So I found one – and negotiated a price – well they told me how much it would cost and it was a lot less than I thought it would be. When I took the cab from the MPC back to the dorms after Opening Ceremonies it was $23 (pounds). I was at least twice as far away – they asked for $35. Then we basically walked to some dudes unmarked car… I was like – uh ok – am I going to be robbed or something. But the dude was really nice – he was born in London but ethnically is from Pakistan – said he had been home once but he couldn’t speak the language so it was tough to get around. Sounded familiar to me. He had three kids. Anyway – made it back safe and sound. My honey pork tasted super good too…
I used the word “super” a lot in this post 😮