As soon as the games started though it was a joy to watch, all of my pre tournament fears melted away and seeing such a marvellous event being run so smoothly made me actually feel proud to be British!
|It's no wonder people wanted to be|
there with such spectacular performances
Everything about the games for me showcased what was promised in our bid - that it was for the people. Four years ago we got an excellent display of state power from the Chinese, it was really impressive what they could do, but I was equally impressed with how this was put together for the people. Right from the lighting of the Olympic Cauldron (by 7 promising young people rather than a famous name and this being split into sections, one for each country), right up to the closing ceremony that was one big party. I was critical of the latter at the time as I don't think all of what was on display was the best of British, but the theme I think was good and they finished with The Who so I shouldn't really complain.
The real challenge however starts now. I don't think I've experienced previously the sense of togetherness and enthusiasm that we've had over the past few weeks as a country. Every other Olympics you get a bit of it but are detached somewhat by it being in a remote place, Football always seems to start with optimism that fades away into misguided anger that we aren't as good as some other countries. Perhaps the only time I can remember something similar (I was a little too young still in Euro 96) was when we won the Ashes in 2005. In many ways, England and Cricket have been seeing some of that reward over the past 3 years... but did they really make the most of it? Now unless you have Sky you only get to watch a small highlights package on Channel 5 any time England plays, even as a cricket fan I forgot that was on earlier this summer. Over the past year England definitely haven't pushed on as they might and the worry is that they could slip back into the pack.
|Australia's Medal Decline|
Anyway I have to finish this post by celebrating the success of Team GB's athletes. The overall performance was one that the whole nation should be proud of, we have some very talented and dedicated individuals - so let them celebrate their success:
I bet so many would like to have been a part of that... any ideas how I can get to Rio?