Lia Cruz will be covering the 2012 London Olympics for TV5 and AKTV. From now until the end of the Games, Lia will be filing exclusive dispatches for InterAKTV, serving as our eyes and ears in London.
Day Four of the 2012 Olympics has now come to a close and I’m sitting alone at my desk in my hotel room trying to sort through all the pictures I’ve taken the past few days. On a personal note, they capture the unbelievable London architecture that I can’t and won’t stop raving about, a few shopping purchases, a walk through the terribly chilly little streets of the city in the dead of the night searching for the nearest pub (sadly, no pictures of that. What was I thinking?! I must go back.) and *ahem* several close-up self-portraits that I have no shame in admitting I take. Pang-Instagram.
But more than all those, the pictures have chronicled most of the events, places and people we’ve been covering these past few days, all four of which have been total whirlwinds. Take a look at what’s been keeping us busy.
The Arcelor Mittal Orbit, a 155-meter high sculpture commissioned for the Olympics. It stands 22 meters higher than the Statue of Liberty.
The Olympic Stadium, used for athletics.
Derek and I shooting spiels in front of the Olympic Stadium and the Orbit.
Yeahhh… Who’s a little hip-hop? That shirt is a tad too large.
Posing inside the massive Olympic Park, which took 46,000 construction workers to build. The Park houses nine brand new competition venues, eight of which will be used during the Games. These are the Stadium, the Aquatics Center, the Basketball Arena, the BMX Track, the Copper Box (handball, fencing), the Riverbank Arena (hockey), Velodrome (cycling), and the Water Polo Arena. Aside from these, it also holds the International Broadcast Center (IBC) and the Athlete’s Village.
Derek and one of the LOCOG volunteers. LOCOG stands for the London Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. LOCOG has a workforce of 200,000, 70,000 of which are volunteers.
Shooting outside the Basketball Arena.
Bird’s eye view of the basketball court. Most of the basketball games are scheduled here, with the alternative venue being North Greenwich Arena
Mr. Derek Ramsay in action, interviewing Sue Bird of the US Women’s Basketball Team, his self-confessed “crush.” You should’ve seen his face right after he finished. His totally composed and professional facade crumbled in a matter of seconds into an all-out gleeful fanboy cackle.
The ExCel Arena, the venue for: weightlifting, boxing, fencing, judo, taekwondo, wrestling, table tennis.
Me at the weightlifting arena, moments before Hidilyn Diaz started her match.
We interviewed Hidilyn right after she was eliminated. She came out with her eyes red and face splotchy, already in tears and the first words she told me were: “Sorry po!” before giving me a great big hug. I’m really fond of Hidilyn. I interviewed her at training in Manila, and despite the brute strength required of her in her sport, she’s just the sweetest creature. She’s very young, only 21, and although she’s got those hands of steel, she giggles while discussing her favorite Koreanovelas, Pinoy celebrities and remedies to get rid of all the calluses on her palms. She’s really just a regular 21-year-old girl, who just happens to be the first Pinay Olympic weightlifter in history.
Mark Barriga taking on Manuel Cappai of Italy. We all know what happened.
Mark’s coaches: Olympic bronze medalist Roel Velasco (1992, Barcelona), and Kevin Smith. Interesting story: Roel only met Kevin, a native of Great Britain, inside the Athlete’s Village. Kevin offered to help him train Mark as his assistant, and Roel took him up on his offer.
With Edgar and Melita Barriga, Mark’s parents. I interviewed Melita back in Manila, and she shared with me that she never watches Mark’s matches, because she’s just plain petrified of seeing her son in the ring. Just before taking this picture, she told us that, after the match, Mark told her that he was glad she was there.