It is a damn long walk up to the gods of the Aquatic Centre in Olympic Park but it is worth every labourious step up to the top to see the greatest Olympian of all time make his final bow.
If we, in the UK, can give knighthoods and damehoods out to our own brilliant athletes, like Steve Redgrave, Chris Hoy and Kelly Holmes, what can the Americans give to Michael Phelps in recognition of his remarkable career except, possibly, the Presidency.
President Phelps? Hmm. Has a bit of a ring! Give it a couple of years, maybe, and you never know.
Phelps has won more medals of any colour and more golds in Olympic Games than any other person in its' glittering history. Only a super-human swimmer - for that is the sport with the most chances of medals - in the future will surpass his incredible record.
It was the last day of the swimming in London and how fitting that the final event, the men's 4x100m medley, would be the great man's swansong. Win or lose, he has his place in history assured, even beating the likes of Mark Spitz and Ian Thorpe in the aquatic order of merit.
These Games have seen, as others, landmark achievements, controversy and history made. Young and old have hit the headlines, like China's Ye Shirwan who, at 16, has caused sensations with her performances but questions on how she could have done so well.
Then there is Japanese equestianist Hiroshi Hoketsu who, at 71 years of age, is still competing in the Dressage, having showjumped for his country in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
But, when everyone from Britain, at least, was heading over to the Olympic Stadium where Mo Farah was looking to land 10,000m athletics gold and with all the whoo-ha over at the Velodrome with the British cyclists, Phelps' swansong may have slightly slipped under the radar.
However, this was probably of more importance in Olympic terms than Usain's less-than-ten seconds of a jog down the track.
It will be with a heavy heart that swimming and the sporting world in general says goodbye at the Olympics to one of its' legends, which is what Phelps can justifiably be called now.
And there was one other thing, as legendary Australian Channel Nine swimming correspondent Damian Ryan pointed out to me tonight.
Phelps is the ultimate professional. I wasn't there but Damian told me: "The other night when he won his last individual gold medal. He came out of the pool and said 'I'm going to speak to every journalist who wants to speak to me tonight."
Lo and behold, in the madness of the media Mixed Zone, where athletes 'mix' with journalists to ask their views on anything they want post-race, Phelps was, said Damian, 'a gentleman'.
Damian added: "He went right down the line and spoke to every journalist from every country, from Belarus to Jamaica, and even the little guy from Indonesia with his mini-camera.
"What's the population of Indonesia? A billion? The little guy was shaking with his hand-held camera as he asked Phelps his questions but that will not only be seen by all those people but will stay with that little guy for the rest of his life. It didn't take much but that is why he is a true Olympic legend."
So, from my own point of view, it was well worth the crawl up that mass of steps to see the great man for my one and only time - and then hope that he stops down the line in the Mixed Zone madness again to grab a word with him to add to the lifetime memories already collected at this incredible sporting spectacular.