|The Olympic park, as seen from the new Thames chairlift|
It all went to pot when I spent a couple of weeks in the UK close to London, just prior to the start of the Olympic Games. There I experienced something which I haven't experienced since 1982 - British pride and British self-belief. I even visited some of the venues to take a ganders at what it was all about. It was amazing - the atmosphere was buzzing. Following on closely from the Queen's Jubilee celebrations, had my people found a new Britishness in the run up to the 2012 London Games?
On returning back to Spain I eagerly awaited the opening of the games; the first time ever for me. That opening ceremony blew me away - it was so British, so us. It brought a tear to my eye, a lump to my throat and a long-forgotten pride to my heart.
I then followed the exploits of Team GB, something I'd only ever paid scant attention to on previous occasions. I was soon hooked. Who were these guys? I didn't know their names or recognise their faces. That's what living in a place like Spain does for you. The only contact I had had with Team GB prior to the opening ceremony was in Madam Tussauds, where the only waxwork to really get my attention was that of a British female athlete (see pic below). I knew she was British from the Union Flag she had stretched out behind her, and her amazingly designed sports kit. Yet I had no idea who she was, but boy did she look good, even in wax.
(courtesy of Firstnews.co.uk)
The closing ceremony was as amazing as the opening, although I do think we have greater musical talent to offer to the world than the Spice Girls.
And now it's all finished. The competitors are heading home, the venues are being dismantled and the world is talking positively about London 2012. So now it's back to a routine. My wife is away for 5 weeks and I am alone to do as I please. The floor needs sweeping; the dishwasher needs emptying; the car is in desperate need of a clean inside and out etc etc. And that's just for starters.
But now it's me time - or more correctly writing time. Anyway, from my observations sat here at my computer, the breeze blows all the crap on the floor into one corner of the room; the dishwasher can be emptied as and when I need an item from it; the car's out of view in the garage and anyway, I can use my motor-bike for now.
My books - my dreams - are demanding my attention right now. And boy do they deserve it...