For all my initial cynicism and mockery, (and yes, I am British so I am allowed to mock my own country) these Olympic Games have been phenomenal. Not just because Team GB has done fantastically well, but because London has proved the sceptics wrong. The organisation has been faultless, the crowds welcoming and the Games as a whole have been incredible. There are always those who seek to denigrate anything that other people strive to achieve. People who were waiting for London to fail, just so that they could point a gleeful finger and say ‘I told you so.’ There are always people waiting in the sidelines hoping that others will fail. Yes, there were seats empty at some of the earlier events, but take a look at the replays of the Games in Beijing, in Atlanta, in Rome. Empty seats there as well.
As for the opening ceremony, it was typically quirky. We Brits excel at self-deprecating ‘quirkiness’. It was, as Opening Ceremonies are meant to be, representative of our culture and our history. So maybe we did have children bouncing on beds. Perhaps that was to reflect the ‘legacy’ aspect of these games, handing the torch onto the next generation but encouraging them to take up the trampoline!
And today the Games come to an end. It has been a wonderful experience. A lesson to us all. Strive to do your best and never give up, despite what other may say. However many obstacles they may put in your path. However much they may mock your efforts. You may not win a gold medal, but at least you tried. You did your very best. That is all that really matters when it comes to the finishing line. Four years of hard work. And sometimes it pays off.