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Aug 25: Unforgettable
    2008-08-25 22:10:22     CRIENGLISH.com

100 meter sprinter Donovan Bailey with CRI IBC team [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com]

By Ning Yan

I remember yesterday while we were having our last dinner at the IBC, all of us needed a moment, a somehow emotional moment, to reassure ourselves, well, this will be the end of the Olympics.

About 20 days ago, knowing I would be producing the special show Olympic Focus at the frontline of the Olympic Games, a job that I had to polish my technical skills for on a pretty short notice, I had these mixed feelings of both excitement and nervousness when I started working at IBC, the International Broadcast Centre.

It would sound unreal if I say I enjoyed that very initial phase of this new task, but for the big night, the opening ceremony night. It felt like the Chinese New Year to me as we stayed up until mid night for the live coverage of the ceremony, there were also those amazing fire works, and spending four exciting hours together with Xiaohua, Trevor and Mark made me feel just so proud to be part of the Games in this way.

Yet still, working in a non-stop manner for up to 20 days had been a daunting thought for me. At one point I was kind of looking forward to the closing day of the Olympics—a very childish idea at the time. But as time went by, and as we approached the games step by step, I began to enjoy this whole new experience.

And just one day after the Games’ over, looking back at it, I know something remains. Something unforgettable remains. Something I believe I will still remember after many years.

Above all, I was and still am so glad that I was there in the National Stadium, the state-of-the art Bird’s Nest, to witness the moment of the fastest men running on the spot. Or to be exact, one super fast man, Usain Bolt, who refreshed the world record of men’s 100 meter sprint at such an ease that he was already celebrating at the last several meters. Who wouldn’t love a wunderkind like Bolt? I took pictures of him running all the way from the moment he started to the finish line. And I was more than amazed! So there goes my most cherished moment.

Here comes the most impressive trip(s) I made during the Olympics. CRI building is located in the southwest of Beijing between the western fourth and fifth ring roads. And the IBC building is way up north near the fourth ring road. With less traffic during the games, it took me just 20 some minutes on a taxi to go from CRI to IBC. Everybody who heard it said it was truly impressive, truly fast. Xiaohua, Trevor and I all hope that traffic will be as smooth after the games. Xiaohua even would give up driving for that. I forgot who said it, but I do agree and hope that the Olympics make us better people. Plus, I really enjoy more blue skies thanks to fewer cars on road, which had driven away all the fatigue from working for more than two consecutive weeks.  

IBC has been a place to have the most unexpected encounters. Because many TV and radio stations all had their studios here, a lot of athletes and sports officials were often asked to come here for interviews. That’s also how I ran into Sylvie Bernier, former Olympic diving champion and chef de mission for the Canadian delegation in the ladies’ room, how Trevor met former Canadian sprinter and once Olympic record holder, Donovan Beiley and Olympic swimming champion, Mark Tewksbury on the escalator—all of whom had come to the CRI Easy FM studio for a chat with us.

What I also loved about IBC is the food there. A desire for food other than what was offered appeared only on the last day of us broadcasting there. Considering we dined there everyday, this is a compliment. They had Asian cuisines, Mediterranean food, grill and cold food, which we have tried one by one and this gourmet experience has been very interesting. Hats off to the chefs!  

Last but not the least, I will remember our office for the past 19 days at the IBC. It is not a big studio, but a delicate one. Temperature was extremely low the first several days we worked there. It didn’t seem a problem for Trevor, who is from Canada. But it did bother Xiaohua and me. We had to wear jeans and jackets while on air to keep warm and functional. Luckily we had that air conditioner problem fixed several days later. We almost made it another home for us ever since.

The minute the signal was cut back to our CRI home studio on the closing ceremony night, I couldn’t help but telling myself, Mission Accomplished! Now it’s time to pack up our stuff and head home. This Olympics will be remembered for 38 new world records, for miracles like Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps and Yelena Isinbayeva, and for the opening and closing ceremonies and so many other things. To me in particular, it has been special for all those unforgettable moments and experiences that I shared with you here.



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What do you think will impress foreign visitors the most during the Beijing Olympics?
The friendliness of the Beijing people
The Water Cube and other Olympic venues
The Forbidden City
The Great Wall
Beijing "siheyuan" (Chinese traditional courtyard houses)
Peking Opera
Wangfujing Street
Beijing Roast Duck