My Olympic Odyssey (Part 3): Stars align


By Jo Gunston

It’s funny how things work out.

My gymnastics coach always used to say, ‘Failure to prepare is preparation for failure’ but as much as you think you’re planning things sometimes things just happen…

Following the announcement that London would host the 2012 Olympics I’d already ditched moving to Australia so that I could be in London for the Games but there were three other integral parts that aligned to enable me to make the most I possibly could out of what was to be my seminal sporting experience. (My use of the word seminal here is ‘strongly influencing later developments’ not ‘relating to or denoting semen’ – I just looked it up.).

First, I started work at what seemed at the time to be my ideal job. You’ll never guess. Yes, on a sport magazine. Who’d have thunk it?

The boyf

The boyf

Second, at said magazine, I met my boyfriend, Jason. The importance of his involvement in my Olympic Odyssey will become clear in later posts (it’s still talked about in revered tones, years later) but just as an aside, he has little interest in sport. Oh universe, you do make me laugh sometimes.

Third, I was in the market to buy a property so whaddya know, I ended up buying somewhere in East London. Oh look at that, I’m within walking distance of the Olympic Stadium…

Jo's new local area got into the Olympic spirit...

Jo’s new local area got into the Olympic spirit…

So my stars were aligning, this was all good. What hadn’t occurred to me at the time was that working on a London-based magazine during an Olympics, in, oh yes, London, would require, oh that’s right, huge amounts of work and little of the going to see events, say, or possibly being a Games Maker at my beloved gymnastics event, or, the holy grail for me, taking part in one of the opening or closing ceremonies.

As it turns out, I didn’t have to worry too much about my job because I didn’t have one by then.

But all that’s to come. Let’s start with the ‘Countdown Clock’ shall we?

03 Jo at Wembley Next post: Olympic Odyssey: 500 days and counting

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