8 highlights from my first year at C&IT

Dog sledding across the northernmost town in the world

Imagine shouting ‘walkies’ to an army of 150 over-excited huskies and then trusting them to tow you through the towering Svalbard glaciers beside lurking polar bears. Terrifying, freezing and exhilarating.

Watching Chelsea beat Arsenal 6-0

Hospitality at Stamford Bridge’s very own venue Under The Bridge, unlimited bacon sarnies and seeing the mighty Jose Mourinho craft a hammering over their London rivals is a winning combination for any Saturday afternoon.

Scaling the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Usually when you get to see a city from 134m above sea level there’s a thick sheet of glass in the way but surely that’s too boring for the adventurous Aussies. BridgeClimb Sydney has to be one of the coolest ways to take in a view with the Opera House in one direction and the Blue Mountains in the other. A glass of champagne at the summit was the icing on the cake. Well played, Sydney!

Flying over Stockholm in a helicopter

Whether you’re seeing the city by foot, bus or boat, Stockholm will almost instantly become one of the favourite places you’ve ever had the fortune to visit. However, experiencing it from a helicopter is enough to eclipse most city experiences and seeing the rivers weave their way around the metropolis and between the stunning archipelagos from above is kind of mesmerising.

Abseiling off the top of The Orbit

Who says you have to leave the British Isles for a bit of dare-devilish fun? In October, the ArcelorMittal Orbit invited a selection of daring reporters to the Olympic Park to abseil their way down the 80m sculpture.

Lowlight: Maneuvering my way past two enormous red beams with a GoPro strapped to my head. Highlight: Being able to see all four corners of London from one of the best vantage points in the city.

Zip-lining across the Atlas Mountains

By now you might be able to tell that I’m a bit of a fan of heights. So, when Rakesh of Pearl Representation revealed to the Marrakech fam trippers that we would be zip-lining across chasms of almost 300m in North Africa’s Atlas Mountains I was the first one on with the harness! The terrifying drops were made all the better with the unforgettable views.

Racing around the Grand Prix track in Abu Dhabi

Wearing a thick jumpsuit, balaclava and helmet in 40-degree weather isn’t all that fun, but, being raced round the Yas Marina Grand Prix Circuit in Abu Dhabi in a FormulaYAS 3000 is, in fact, a ‘helluva’ lot of fun!

Singing into John Lennon’s microphone at Abbey Road Studios

When the email came through from Perception PR on only my second day in the job I couldn’t quite believe the opportunity had arisen and why I, one of hundreds of millions Beatles fanatics, was going to get the chance to record a song at the historic Abbey Road Studios. On the night, I was part of a 50-strong choir – predominantly made up of event planners – to record our own rendition of The Beatles classic, ‘Help!’

With the aid of a professional voice coach, the group recorded the verses, the choruses and a range of harmonies that even McCartney would have been proud of. It was all going well until we realised that two lines from the third, and final, verse were left vacant for a brave soloist. Volunteers were called upon and a few hands rose but the room that was filled with song moments earlier fell understandably quiet. It wasn’t until I was told that the microphone had once been sung into by John Lennon that I felt my arm bolt high into the air.

Four people, including myself, were summoned into an X-Factor style audition at the front of the room and were instructed to belt out the solo the best we could. What followed was undoubtedly one of the scariest things I’ve ever done but when opportunity knocks make sure you’re the one who answers the door! Miraculously I made it through the mini audition and there I was staring down at the microphone that John Lennon had sung some of the most famous melodies on the planet into. With the headphones clasped around my ears and my colleague Alison Ledger taking pictures like a proud mum I went for it and, as they say, the rest was history. Not a bad start to the job!

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