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Saturday 22 February 2014

Olympic Nostalgia

Wow ... four years ago I was winding own and getting ready to come home after nearly three weeks away at one of the most awesome experiences ever! I won't say I had forgot my Vancouver 2010 experiences, but with all the Sochi 2014-ness we have had the past little while, I have been getting a wee bit sentimental with some awesome memories.

I wasn't working full time and when the offer of going to Vancouver to work at the BC International Media Centre (BCMC) for the entire Olympics it was a golden opportunity. I jumped at it!

While there I helped media out with whatever they needed. Basically I was there to help with guest relations services and ensured outdoor tents and broadcasting areas were properly equipped and set up. Sometimes that meant for some extra coordinating with the main control room and outside broadcasting stations.  Sometimes it meant phoning New York (in the middle of the night) to ensure the folks on the other end had 'flipped a switch' to ensure the the morning show would hit the air smoothly. And sometimes it meant fetching coffee at 5am for some folks. Or strapping on skates to help with a segment when volunteers didn't show up! And, once my  volunteer coordinator found out my media background, I was asked to uploaded media releases and advisories to BCMC website as needed.

(Now 4 years ago I was a little heavier than I am now - about 50lbs - and wasn't gonna post the pics, 
but then realized they were kinda marvy and some of you might like them!) 
Forgive some of the bad quality of pics - mostly iPhone. Sadly I have misplaced most of the press conf pics. grrrr

Really, it didn't feel a lot like work. There was a ton of Olympic spirit every day...

... like checking out past torches -- Beijing, Torino and Salt Lake City! 
 Or helping out with Olympic Mascot shows on the ice ...
Or having FUN at work ... sometimes at all hours of the day or night!
One of the most awesome highlights were the press conferences. 
Basically, this media centre housed all media that were not 'official' or sponsored. 
So there were a ton of Canadian athletes present! It was awesome!
If there was a story to be told, it often happened at the BCMC. 
Which made for a lot of celebrity sightings! Recognise anyone? 

I learned a ton by watching events unfold. Some of our athletes, like Clara Hughes, Alex Bilodeau, Jon Montgomery,  the Canadian Women's Hockey team, some of the men's hockey team, many of our speed skaters, were a pleasure to meet and watch. They created a LOT of buzz and mini crowd crushes when they came out to greet the fans gathered in the spectator areas of Robson Centre. I not sure if there is anyone in the world more charming than Clara Hughes. she is one amazing ambassador. Alex Bilodeau, after winning our first gold medal of the games, created a near riot. The media scum was awesome. There were several hundred interview requests. But he stayed for every one!

Johnny Weir, the American figure skater, was a special highlight for me. He had a presser to talk about himself, his reality TV show and some negative comments that had been made about him by some sportscasters. I expected to dislike him. But he came across as genuine, funny, and won the hearts of EVERYONE. Plus I met Jeanne Beker, been a fan for a VERY long time ... she's fashion and entertainment icon! 

Worst public speaker award goes to Arnold Schwarzenegger. He needs elocution lessons. And a hairdresser. the man had BAD hair! WTH, really. REALLY BAD. 

When I wasn't working, I had a ton of fun connecting friends and family...
And checking out the awesome sights around town...

I even got to meet NEW friends...
 ...and people watch
And cheering my head off! 

 I was even lucky enough to go to some porting events...( photos of a few of those).
But two awesome highlights were curling and hanging at Molson Canadian Hockey House.
The night we were there, there was a nice surprise. 
The Triple Gold Club awards were given out and we were practically in the front row! Killer awesome. We watched the Canadian take gold in Women's Hockey, then Ice Dance...then watched hockey legends.  

So. Much. Fun. 

You might have seen one pic that looks a lot like me being interviewed! I was. At the curling venue. CBC did a story on how loud and crazy fans were. (Apparently some nerdy people complained!) Let me tell you: Olympic Curling is AWESOME Fun. Insanely loud cheering crowds and nutty fans. I highly recommend it! 

So why not share that nutty little story

I hate how I  look and sound, but it is totally all about Olympic spirit! 

What is your favourite Olympic sport to watch? 
Do you watch sports during the Olympics that you normally do not watch?
Have you been a part of the Olympics - as a spectator, volunteer?  


  1. Great post. I wish I could get in to the Olympic spirit... I am jealous. :) Your post really shared your enthusiasm and love of the event. Loved the pics! Also, I love your skirt in your title image on your blog. ;)

    1. I spent most of this Olympics following twitter, working extra hours juggling a couple jobs, so it was a diff experience. Being THERE in the thick of things seeing different parts than what they show on TV really makes a difference! These past 2 weeks made me very nostalgic! Oh....and my skirt is a sparkle athletic skirt! go #teamsparkle!

  2. So, so awesome! Envious of your experience.

    1. Pretty once in a lifetime...not sure I will ever be so lucky again!

  3. This is amazingly seriously awesome!!! Thank you for sharing this, pics and story, absolutely awesome, so awesome that I'm starting to repeat myself :))

  4. Coolest opportunity ever! Lucky you! I watch ALL the Olympic sports. I truly love it so much. Of course I have to say figure skating is my fave.

  5. WOW, how amazing!!! I am happy to watch any olympic event, but especially love anything that is an endurance sport (like running, or biathlon, x-country skiing).

  6. Holy smokes, the experience of a lifetime for sure! Your reputation as Best Pic Taker and Displayer is on full display, as well! Thanks for sharing!

  7. I always wanted to volunteer when the Olympics came to town but then Marcus was born and was still a little baby and it wouldn’t have worked out for me to be away so much. I watched and attended everything I could including the opening ceremonies which will be a lifetime highlight for sure!

  8. Wow, what a cool opportunity Tina! I'm so glad you shared your photos and stories with us. I love the Olympics and I would have loved to go when they were in Vancouver. It made me a little sad to see my hometown on TV and to not be there. So awesome that you were there!!