I’m not entirely sure if apprentices, trembling and terrified on their first day of work after leaving school, still get sent out of the office for a “long stand” any more while grizzled co-workers chuckle at their naivety.
For this new-boy, making an ICE debut and damp behind the ears in the industry, there was never any chance of much waiting around once the doors opened at ExCeL London.
I did my fair share of stomping around in my previous job as a football reporter. Successfully gaining post-match quotes from two different managers often meant attempting to conquer quantum physics by appearing simultaneously in two different points in space-time at 5pm on a Saturday evening.
That was a challenge. So too, last week, was getting the copy and photographs required for the ICE Daily editions while observing deadlines.
I did pack my running shoes for the trip, minded to get some early morning exercise, but this was a hopelessly optimistic act. Inside the vast halls, there was no archway support within a pair of brogues that easily stomped through 10,000 steps per day.
Interviewing, snapping, trotting from one side of the hall to the other and back again, retiring upstairs to the meeting room to bash out the stories that needed to be told… Despite multiple warnings, I found it faintly exhausting. And that was only after day one.
Still, the size of the event was matched by its relentless and infectious energy.
Across five days, I stood open-mouthed at a bar made out of ice in Battersea Park, hammered the snooze button the next morning after precious little sleep and marvelled at just how unusually pleasant everyone that I met seemed to be.
I fantasised at a Batmobile, occasionally cowered as an aircraft whizzed out of London City Airport and contemplated the role of hot pants at a business event.
It was a lot to take in, but I’m a newbie no more. Bring on the 2019 edition.