Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Uh! Oh! ....Dan has Delhi Belly....

It was bound to happen...terrible food....water....a recipe for a problem.  and so Dan has a case of Delhi Belly.  One of the team Doctors sent over some help and I believe he feels a little better.  He comes home Friday and I can't wait to see him.

He has taken some nice photos even though  he wasn't feeling well....

Dan and I can actually be a commercial for Google Video Chat/Talk.  We have been using it almost daily. I wish him good-night at around 2:30PM my time (EST)...and good morning at about 11:30 PM my time.   I haven't even gone to sleep yet!  We chat while he is loading his pictures ..and we feel like we are together a bit.   Romantic in a kind of crazy way - but fun!

I neglected to tell you about the insects.  It seems particularly at Track and Field these bugs were all over the place - even on the running track!  These are NOT sissy bugs!  THEY ARE BIG!

At one point Dan thought he stepped on a candy bar...but no, it was a beetle of sorts.  When he picked up his camera bag,  hundreds of moths flew out.  He said there were a million moths at the track and at tennis it looked like it was snowing...
OK I will stop talking about the bugs.  I asked him to take pictures of them but he was just too focussed on the sports...oh well...

It looks like Canada will not end up in the Top 3.....

But we have done well!

Until next time


Monday, October 11, 2010

The Road Race...No Spectators Allowed....

The men’s and women’s cycling road race was unlike anything Dan has seen. The start/ finish line was about 500 metres from the hotel so he thought he would walk...well that wasn’t going to be allowed.... They wouldn’t let anyone by. In all of his career he has never seen a race like this and neither have the athletes. There was no one allowed by the track. Usually these are sports “for the people” who don’t have money so would have access to watch something like this. They wouldn’t let anyone around the track at all, so no spectators. One of the athletes mentioned that it was like running in a prison. The photographers were allowed access within a 100 ft area and didn’t have good views plus there were obstacles. The woman’s race was 8 laps and after 6 they finally let the photographers cross the track and gave them a little more freedom of movement.

Backgrounds are important in pictures like this - but the dilemma is how to get a photo position in these circumstances which would provide a sense of place etc.

For the men’s race, he knew where he wanted to be and was determined...India Gate - a monument to the WW1 would be good. A photo marshall finally escorted him and another photographer to this place. The other photographer was from Scotland, so they talked about our trip next year to Scotland...and told Dan we would all have dinner together. Traveling is so much about the people you meet along the way...

It is so hot the pavement is melting.... he drank 8 bottles of water and never had to hit a washroom.

He said he must have walked about 10 miles today with his equipment. He also took too much but wasn’t sure where he would end up so took everything to be safe.

Dan got to a point when he was walking back that he started shaking...a BBC cameraman noticed him walking strange and rescued him...he gave him some water and cookies.

So dusty – sand is grinding in his teeth...

Tonight he was invited to the Taj Mahal Hotel for dinner.

For more information and more of Dan's pictures click here.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Canada is Aiming for a Top 3 Finish - 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi

I have been busy the last few days and haven't had much time to write so I have to catch up! 

A little about the photo positions.  The photographers just don't get to go anywhere they want , even if you are accredited for the event.  Each venue has a photo manager and each venue will have chosen photo positions a head of time.  Then it’s whoever arrives first.  Once in position, it is difficult to move, depending on the sport.  Track in field is the most challenging as you need a pass for infield access.  Sometimes there is a time limit on this pass as there are limits on the number of people on the infield.  Once there - you always need to be aware of what is going on around you so you don’t get killed by a Javelin or discus!

And Wrestling....

So far we have 19 Gold - 12 Silver - and 22 Bronze medals.

Keep your eye on the ball!

Synchronized Swimming - another medal!

For more information about Canada at the Commonwealth Games click here .
Contact Dan  at

Until next time


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Another Day in Delhi...

Dan took a TUK TUK from field Hockey to the press centre because it would be half an hour before the  media bus would be leaving and he didn't feel like waiting.

At first the TUK TUK driver stopped in the middle of nowhere, so Dan refused to get off ...he spoke to Dan in Hindi and Dan spoke to him in English so there was a bit of a language problem.  The signs don't really help either as the writing is composed of symbols and unfamiliar letters.  And so the driver went over to a soldier who gave him directions in Hindi and they proceeded to the entrance of the media centre. The cost of the TUK TUK ride - 20  Rupees (.50cents) but Dan wanted to give him 100 Rupees ( $2.50) and he wouldn't take it - no matter how much Dan insisted...oh well....There are solidiers everywhere it seems....a  total of 50,000 soldiers - 30,000 Delhi police and 20,000 special ops soldiers are stationed around Delhi for these games! 

After walking a further km with his heavy equipment to the media Centre,  he boarded a bus to go to weightlifting.  It was about noon and the event was scheduled for 2:00, so he spent time downloading some pictures.

From Weightlifting he was scheduled to go to swimming.  A car was supposed to pick him up but the car went to the wrong stadium to get him so by the time he picked him up , he missed the first 3 or 4 races. overall though, it was a disappointing day for the swimmers.

He was trying to describe the heat to me...Dan and I had just been to Greece in July (blog to be posted soon).   "Imagine when we were in hot it imagine a bonfire following us."

He is settling in at the hotel and feels like Norm on "Cheers".  When he walks in to the hotel bar, they have a beer ready for him...

And so...another day in Delhi...

Until tomorrow


Monday, October 4, 2010

Dealing with the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi...

There is more to taking pictures when working at an event like this than camera technique.  Dan  is there to capture pictures of as many Canadian athletes as possible, so he has to plan his days in order to achieve this.  Some of the events occur at the same time...which one does he attend? There is a sports coordinator who makes sense of the scheduling for all the different sports and provides Dan with a summary. 

He then reviews the schedule for the next day, determining the number of Canadian athletes competing in the events, taking into account the stats, if and when there are finals and in the case of some events – is this their one and only chance to compete as they may be eliminated, as in sports like boxing and  wrestling.  And other events like pole vault and the cycling road race only happen once, so in order to photograph them, you need to work them into your plans.  The logistics are not always easy, as venues may be distances apart while lugging cameras, computers etc.  in the heat.
An example of his day....
After swimming, Dan returned to the media centre then waited for a bus to go to lawn bowling, but the bus never showed up so they put him in a private car and he arrived at lawn bowling just before 3:00. 

After taking some shots of that event he had to hurry over to gymnastics  to get there before the start at 4:30.  The driver didn’t have a clue where to go and Dan was giving the driver directions according to his handy pocket map.  Cutting across lanes and almost running over a bicycle, they passed the gymnastics stadium three times before they figured out how to go in, and finally arrived there at 4:20.  One photographer  just arrived in time for the medal ceremony because his driver couldn’t find the stadium.
"The security is beyond belief ! They put stickers on your cameras that don’t peel off, kind of like peeling off wallpaper. The stickers say “ the anti sabotage check – Delhi police department".  All the guys were upset that their high end cameras had these stickers on them –  Security is so intense that every camera gadget is scrutinized at every point.  All you want to do is get in and get to your position. "
Imagine their expensive camera equipment bouncing through the xray machines ....everything is clunking around! The TV equipment is bouncing through too. One TV cameraman had his equipment settings changed so much he couldn’t figure out how to get the settings back!
The Gymnasium stadium is huge and holds about 10,000, but there were only about 300 people there hmmm.  Dan, eager to get to a photo position as quickly as possible, wanted to use the staircase, but they wouldn't  allow him and insisted  he take an elevator because of security reasons...a small elevator and a longer wait.... When the photographers wanted to get up close for the medal ceremony, security argued with them... but....finally  they let the photographers close enough to take the medal shots. 

The Canadian team won a Bronze medal.   Their individual performance counts as well,  and if the individual is in the top 8, they can compete in those individual events.

Look who is in the crowd...
Two Princes....

It is 44 degrees and he is melting.
Until next time...

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Let the Games Begin! India Welcomes the World!

The Commonwealth Games opening Ceremonies included a giant helium balloon, hundreds of drummers and highlighted the rhythms and colours of India - They went off seamlessly.

Where was Dan?  When taking photographs of an event this big, the choice is between staying on the field level or going up higher.  Dan started off low but decided to go up above as he felt that he would get better pictures.  Once in position though, it was difficult to move.  The giant helium balloon provided a lot of obstacles for good photographs as it was held in place with many cables.

Until Tomorrow...

Swimming, Lawn Bowling and Gymnastics...following Dan "virtually" to these events...


Commonwealth Games 2010, Delhi - Not so bad after all!

The first Commonwealth Games in Hamilton 1930 included only 6 sports. They were Athletics, Aquatics (Swimming & Diving) Boxing, Lawn Bowls, Rowing, and Wrestling. The emergence of world bodies to regulate various sports has helped these sports to be more scientific and sophisticated by making strict rules and regulations. As a result, more and more sports are being included within the framework of Commonwealth Games, which has reached up 17 events to be held during 2010 Commonwealth Games.
Entertainment at the flag raising ceremonies

According to the rules of the Commonwealth Games Federation, there are three types of sports namely Core, Optional and Recognized. The hosting city of Commonwealth Games must include a minimum of 10 core sports on their Programme. They can then include up to an additional Seven from a list of optional sports, with a maximum of four team sports on their Programme.  Recognised sports are those sports, which require further growth within the Commonwealth before they can be classed as Optional.
Off to swim practice and Gymnastics in front of the Canadian Residences

As far as the 2010 Commonwealth Games are concerned 17 sports have been planned for it. They are Aquatics, Archery, Athletics, Badminton, Boxing, Cycling, Gymnastics, Hockey, Lawn Bowls, Netball, Rugby 7s, Shooting, Squash, Table Tennis, Tennis Weightlifting and Wrestling. Canada chose not to send athletes to compete in Netball and tennis.

These 17 sports are to be played in eleven major stadiums located across the city of Delhi. 
Some of the Canadian support staff - Medical, Athletics, Transportation
(Reference - various Commonwealth Games sites)


Spoke to Dan and he had so many positive things to say about the village!  A little bit is unfinished but overall everyone is happy and certainly it isn't unliveable.  There are very nice features – Dining hall is amazing – different stations – African – Asian – Western (salad options – pasta and pizza ) and everyone is raving about the food!

Canoose the Goose - Canada's Mascot
Shera - the mascot for the Delhi Games

The village is like a sub division with a series of 7 or 8 story apartment buildings. There are training facilities in the village but the competition takes place at different venues around the city as mentioned previously.   Smaller refreshment areas around the village featuring cold drinks etc.  and there is even a casual dining option around a pool.

Bracelets are given to the Flagbearers 
Opening ceremonies - Ken Pereira (Captain of Field Hockey)
Closing ceremonies in Melbourne - Alexandra Orlando (rhythmic gymnastics)

It really isn't bad at all!  He is starting to get very busy....
Until next time

Friday, October 1, 2010

The Media Centre at the Commonwealth Games and more....

It was off to the Commonwealth Games media centre  in a TUK TUK.  It seems to be the most popular way to get around. You have to find one from about the 2 million.  I need to make a correction here.  Evne though they are most commonly known as TUK TUKS, the Indian people would like them referred to as Rickshaws...

After all the negative attention the Games have received, Dan was quite  impressed with the media centre...a state of the art facility.  He was admiring the place when a flock of pigeons swooped around him.  He suggested calling in the shooting team....just kidding....

The Equipment:

Dan takes two Nikon D3 camera  bodies, an 18-70 zoom lens, an 80-200 zoom lens,  300 mm and 400mm telephoto lenses, two MacBook Pros, one monopod and a bunch of other heavy stuff.  He wears shorts with a gazillion pockets to carry a lot of it.  And let’s not forget, a lot of granola bars! 

Signs indicating the dedicated travel lanes (they drive on the left here)

A group of Indian youngsters set to participate in the South African Flag Raising Ceremony. It's a tradition that every participating country have a ceremony when they arrive in the village -
Canada's is on Friday afternoon

This is the market near Connaught Place and my hotel. It's wild there. I'm about 6" taller than most people here so that makes me apparently interested in buying most everything - pipes, wallets, fake Ray Bans, belts, sandals, you name it. Actually a little intimidating."

The vibrant colours of India

Dan said he didn't have much to shoot today and is getting antsy. They have a press conference tomorrow to introduce the flag bearer and to make some Canadian athletes available to the media.

Until the next time...


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