Boy, the pressure was on. Sweat, tears, lack of sleep, battles with nerves were all part of this Olympic event.
Covering the 100-metre final, gold medal basketball final or the opening ceremony?
No, nothing that mundane.
This was the challenge of herding 18 journalists for an 8 a.m. photo shoot midway through the London Olympics.
How can we get a team that works hard, sometimes plays hard and more than all else takes great pride on being behind the notebook or the camera? Unless of course that is their job such as with vibrant Paul Rivard.
First, we needed a game plan. Meet on Sunday in front of the hotel where 15 of the team are residing. Tell the other 3 they must get to the hotel at a certain hour on a certain day.
First note went out a week in advance, couple of reminders and all went well. Fortunately, everyone made it with the last stragglers about 7 minutes after 8. 18 invited, 18 on hand.
Next was a three-minute walk to the St. Pancras train station where keen Sun Media photographers Dave Abel and Al Charest selected a site in front of the Olympics rings. Brilliant.
We then took several shots and most were able to muster a smile.
Here is the winning shot. All seems easy now.