"Unforgettable memories" this is the reason why a college majoring in communications decided to volunteer for the Olympics. I was chatting with him at the Women's gold medal soccer game. I did find out that they are not required to work 14 hours (like one volunteer told me) but 8 hours a day for 20 days. But it's certainly possible that some volunteers work longer than others.
The soccer game was pretty sweet - they went scoreless into overtime and our goalie Han Solo - oops - Hope Solo - made a ton of sweet saves. To a Star Wars fan would Hope Solo be Han Solo's great, great, great x10 grandma? There is quite a big back-story revolving around her and the world cup, but I'm not getting into that.
Reverse - taht otni gnitteg ton m'I tub htrof os dna... today was another monster day - my longest so far. Got up at 7 a.m. to shoot the beach volleyball gold medal match and my head hit the pillow around 4:30ish a.m. Today it felt like I hit the wall at 7, I did not want to get up... and looking out my 12th story window at the other media towers and seeing rain pouring down really didn't help my cause.
I have never been as soaking wet as I have been at beach volleyball. My ThinkTankPhoto Hydrophobia did keep my camera's nice and dry but I got soaked despite wearing a waterproof jacket. It was raining so hard that it just went right down my neck and soaked the front of my shirt and eventually my pants.
Robert Beck (SI) had the brilliant idea of wearing swim trunks to the match. I, on the other end of the spectrum of brilliance, decided to wear pants! duh... so if you want to feel what it was like today, put your clothes on, get into the shower and turn the water on and sit there for 45 minutes and watch beach volleyball on tv (please don't bring the tv IN to the shower with you though). The match was a good one and it was also nice and quick - like I said about 45 minutes. The game jube was ok but the medal ceremony (which can be not so good) had some nice emotion since this might be Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor's last Olympics.
The match started at 11:00 am - but our picture editor Jami back in the States was nice enough to get the normal 12:00 pm (9 p.m. in California) deadline pushed back to 12:40 (or 9:40 p.m.) - because it was raining there was no way for me to bring my computer out and transmit. The medal ceremony ended about 12:15 which gave me 25 minutes to run back to the press room and scan and transmit - I raced through 24 images by about 12:45 - which was 9:45 p.m. back in California.
Being the good mother that our columnist Ann is, after I walked into our office in the MPC she instructed me to go back to my room and change - or I'd get sick. I'm really glad I did - I had actually walked out to the buses and then turned around. So after talking with her I walked back to the buses again, luckily I had about 3 hours before I had to head to the Women's water polo match. I even caught a 15 minute nap.
I would have stayed for the medal ceremony at water polo but since they lost and got the silver I decided to book it out of there and catch as much of the gold medal soccer game as I could. I had to go back to the MPC and then catch bus MB13 to the Beijing Workers Stadium. I had thought about grabbing a taxi but it would have been hard to describe where I needed to go - to the media entrance.
I walked on the field about 10 minutes into the game, didn't miss much. I am still amazed the US won because the Brazilians just dominated them the first half. The game was scoreless in regulation. With about 5-10 minutes left in regulation a bunch of the so-cal shooters who were at the softball game (which they lost - and won silver) - sauntered in. "What did I miss," they asked me... I said to them, you bastards, you haven't missed anything! There was a brief time-out before overtime started - which consists of two 15 minute halves - no sudden death. USA's Carli Lloyd broke the tie about 5 minutes into the first overtime and they just had to hold on and have Solo use the force to stop a couple more goals.
A cool, quick factoid, the Women's gold medal was the 1,000th gold medal in US history in the Olympic Games.
Oddly enough the Brazilian players only list one name the roster - not sure if it's their first or last - but one of the players name is Marta - which reminded me of one of the best television shows of all time - Arrested Development - I should have had her autograph my Bluth Company tee-shirt.