For my previous entries, I think I’ve mentioned that I haven’t been here in Toronto for a long time. So for me, everything was still new, still trying to adjust and meet new people, adjusting to the culture, etc. I also mentioned joining The Remix Project, where I was able to grow my network and help myself go out there and look for opportunities that can help me grow and practice my skills.
With the help of the internet, I was able to search for volunteer work. Thankfully, I was able to find this event that’s looking for a photographer as well. It was one of my first photography opportunities in Toronto, so it was a big challenge for me – considering I still haven’t met the people behind the event.
The event is called The Running Date, which was held last October 15, 2011. I learned that it’s like an amazing race for couples who will go around the area with only clues given to them. It’s up to them to figure out which places to go to, where to go to first for the fastest route, etc.
I remember waking up really early that cold morning, and getting prepared for this event. It was the first time for me to go out on my own that early in Toronto, and whenever I go out, I always wish that I won’t get lost because I really don’t have any sense of direction. I can’t remember exactly what time the event started, but I got there really early and I even slept for a while. I wasn’t even sure where the place exactly was, until I saw the “Running Date” papers on the window.
For preparations, us volunteers got shirts designed by Lucy and Joseph. Everyone had to prepare the place as well – decorations like signs, baloons – to welcome all the participants for the event. Everyone was going around, making sure the set-up was okay and the plans for the stations will go well.
Once the participants got in, opening ceremonies were made. The participants we welcomed in that really early day for the event, and the rules were given out. After a while, everyone went out and did their thing to win the race.
The participants were only given these papers as clues, and it’s up to them to figure out where the stations are, which station to go to first to have the fastest route, etc. It’s all about planning and strategy on how to win the whole race. It wasn’t really easy if you’re not that familiar with the place. I myself was given the place of the stations and I still wasn’t able to go to the last 3 stations because I got lost. It was my first time to go around the area on my own, and I don’t really have the best sense of direction, hahaha.
Here are some of the stations that I was able to go to. In the first station, I was able to bond with Joseph – one of the people who came up with the idea of this event. In this station, I really can’t exactly remember what the task was, but I think it was like guessing, or charades, where one is acting with no words used, and the other one is guessing. In the second station, they had to guess what was in those bowls (I think..?) And in the third station, the couple is going to make a sushi roll, where one is blindfolded (the one making the sushi) and the other is in front, just giving out instructions.
I got really tired from going around, carrying my heavy bag with my camera, jacket, and other stuff, and it got warmer later in the day. So I decided to go back. Once I got there, some of the participants were already there way ahead of me, and some just got there, and some were still on the way back. Good thing I went back already, or else I would’ve been the last and I’m not even part of the race.
Of course, any race/contest should always have a price. The 3rd Price is a Dinner for 2 at 360 Restaurant in the CN Tower. The 2nd Price is a Helicopter Ride over Niagara Falls for 2. And the 1st Price is an iPad. I even remember someone asking them, who will get the iPad? Hahaha.
All in all, it was a great opportunity for me. Got to meet new people, helped me grow my network. Gained experience and was able to practice my photography skills. I was able to go around the area and find my way around. I got lost, but at least I got familiar with the place. Little by little, I was able to gain my confidence with myself, with interacting with people and with how I work. It was actually a great day before my birthday.
I’m looking forward to having more of these in the future, getting to work with these people again. 😀