The Job of a Lifetime
A few months ago, an email was sent around all members of the canoe club saying that a company who ran a food stall for festivals and things had managed to get a space to sell at a canoeing event at the Olympics. They were low on staff and asked if any of us were interested in helping out. Erm… YES! The job was perfect for me – they needed people in my age range, interested in canoeing and not only is it a food stall (and we all know how much I love food), but it’s a vegetarian food stall! How brilliant’s that?!
I emailed back and said something along the lines of “please, please, PRETTY PLEASE let me come! I will love you forever and ever if you do…!”. And for some reason, after that, they gave me the job! Well, they gave jobs to pretty much anyone who applied from the canoe club I think, but I am SO excited about this! And it just kept getting better. At first, it was a bit unclear if this was volunteer work or paid work (it wouldn’t have stopped me either way – what an experience!) and it turned out to be a fully paid job, travel expenses paid and we can help ourselves to any food from the stall. Not only that, but it turned out they’ve offered us work for the whole summer. And not just anywhere, I’m talking V-fest, the Isle of Wight Festival, Download Festival, along with loads of other smaller events. I can’t believe this job just landed in my lap! We have to camp wherever we go, but that’s ok, I’m an experienced camper. I think that’s a prerequisite of being a member of the canoe club.
Anyway… we got an email last week saying that because it’s the Olympics and they’re being really tight with security and everything as you can imagine, we had to go to London with our ID to pick up our passes for the event. And we had allocated days of Monday to Friday this week. This week when I’m trying to cram as much revision in before my exams next week and when my brother, Padraig who is also doing it, has exams. Brilliant. So it was arranged that yesterday, I’d be picked up from uni at 7:15 am, we’d go to the canoe club to pick up Padraig and Sophie, my friend who is doing it too, then drive to London.
The day didn’t start off very well when I was woken up by a text saying, “I’m in the car park, where are you?”. Yep, my alarm decided not to go off. So I rang quickly to say in a wobbly voice that I’d just woken up and I’d be there as quick as I could, while throwing on any old clothes. We got to the canoe club in about 45 mins and then set off for my first ever trip to London (not counting the visit when I was about 5 and the few trips down the Thames in a boat). As you can imagine, there was quite a lot of traffic and the place was quite hard to find, so it took us 2 and three quarter hours to get there, by which time we were all bursting for the loo and sweating buckets. Did I mention, this was a swelteringly hot day and in my morning haste, I’d thrown on JEANS? Man, I was hot.
We went inside and got our ID checked, they printed off our passes and we were done in about 2 minutes. Then we got back in the car ready for the 2 and three quarter hour ride back home. It wasn’t so bad because we stopped for a service station lunch on the way back and discovered Temple Run on Sophie’s phone, but it was a long ride.
We stopped at the canoe club for ice creams from the village shop and then dropped Padraig home before I was returned to uni – another 45 minute journey. Honestly, spending nearly six hours in a hot car on a day when I really needed to concentrate on my work was not my number one choice, but if it means I can take part in such an amazing thing (and eat my weight in falafel), I guess I don’t mind too much.
So if any of you have tickets for the white water canoeing at the Lee Valley course, I’ll see you there!