Wednesday, 15 August 2012
Proud to be a Londoner!
The events that I watched live - cycling, athletics, fencing and beach volleyball were really well organised and it looked like alot of thought and detail had gone into the logistics. There were loads of smiling helpful volunteers on hand to welcome folks and point them in the right direction. Even the military and the police, who were drafted in to help with security were very jolly and got involved in the sporting festivities.
When I didn't watch events live I went to Potters Fields, a stretch of parkland between City Hall and Tower Bridge. That was a great place to be - sandwiched between iconic landmarks along the River Thames, watching various unforgettable moments unfold on the big screen. There were a few thousand of us there with our picnics and beers, but despite the large number of folks it still felt very initimate and friendly.
On every occasion during the medal ceremonies everyone in the park stood up to sing the GB National Anthem. That was an impressive sight, considering that many of the folks were younger, not necessarily British, and maybe even republicans!
It's true that the spirit of the Olympics has really lifted me. It's not just the sporting prowess, and the pride in seeing GB athletes (particularly cyclists) winning medals, but just the way that London projected itself so positively across the world. I must say that if I were not from London I would certainly want to visit the city, and Surrey as well which featured heavily in the cycle races. The television pictures of all the venues, and the way that many venues had been decked out for the Olympics looked very impressive.
For me, there is no better finish to a race than area of Buckingham Palace and Parliament Square/Big Ben. I can't imagine any athlete not enjoying completing their race on a more regal a street!
As well as the sporting action, there were various cultural events, exhibitions and concerts that took place in open areas so London also showcased its creative side.
Even the weather played ball with us. Ok, so we didn't have heatwave weather, and we did watch the beach volleyball in full coats with umbrellas nearby, but the sun came out on the majority of days and the Games were by no means a washout!
I am also so pleased that London really knocked the spots off other cities by putting on a great show, and Londoners have shown that this place is pretty cool! I wouldn't want to be from anywhere else!