Back in October I was full of excitement at having beenchosen as a Gamesmaker for the Paralympic Games, in the role of NPC assistant. I promised then that I would blog as much as I could and I wouldn’t blame you for thinking that nothing much has happened since.
Couldn’t be more wrong.
The year 2012 came and before I knew it I was having my first Role-specific training session in wonderful Hackney. This was my first event as a full-fledged Gamesmaker and I wasn’t sure what I was expecting so off I went with an open mind and an endless curiosity to London on a cold January afternoon.
I won’t bore you with the details of getting lost on the way there (ANNOYING) but eventually I made it and even though I was late all the organisers there made me feel so welcome while they were checking me in. I was directed to a room where there must have been about a thousand other people, all NOC/NPC assistants like me!
The day itself was interesting as it included a presentation on the background of the Olympics and the various organizations and committees that make it up, to help us understand what our roles would be and where they fit in. The most fascinating thing is that most of us were chosen because we have a second (or third, or fourth or even, in one case, a fifth!) language. This meant that it was a pretty international cast of characters in there.
We didn’t just sit there and listen to presentations – we also met some of the team from LOCOG that we will be working with, we had a few quizzes (with prizes!) and then spent a lot of time playing various games that were designed to help us remember the various venues and the events that would be held at them. This is important for us to know as we will be acting as ‘concierges’ to our NOC or NPC so we need to know what happens where and where the actual venue is.
I left that day feeling a little more familiar with the actual role offered to me and a little overwhelmed by the commitment that I had signed up for. The reality of working long shifts in unsocial hours and over 6 days for just over three weeks did make me wonder if I had done the right thing and I went home feeling elated but somewhat overwhelmed as well. I worried that I wouldn’t be able to find the time to fulfil my duties and I even wondered if I should re-think this opportunity.
I shouldn’t have worried. My next event at Wembley convinced me that I WAS doing the right thing! But that, as they say, is another story for another day.