And so the fat lady has sung and the show has ended.
London’s 2012 Olympics are done.
I miss it already. Roll on September for the Paralympics.
The Olympics have transformed London, excited my country and given us all something to feel proud about.
The buzz of being allowed to be openly British without having to say sorry to anyone has been mightily
I have to say that one of the biggest things I will miss will be my Olympic commute.
I commute into London every day. It truly is a chore. On the run up to the Olympics all you could ever hear at work were people moaning about the impending doom and commuting disaster that loomed around the corner.
Everyone knew it would be hell.
I was a lone voice among them saying how they would all, In fact, survive. ‘Yes it will be busy,’ ‘yes it will be tough’ I would say, ‘but it’s only 2 weeks and it’s the bloody Olympics! Get over it!!”
And guess what? I was only bloody right!
Not only did we cope with the extra traffic but I’d say we were entirely enhanced by it. My trains in particular were crammed. The mainline train especially was full to the brim every day and finding a seat was tough and occasionally impossible. The tubes were heavy also.
But… I really enjoyed my commutes.
When does anyone EVER say that?
The difference was unbelievable. Instead of the carriages being full of miserable, bored commuters, hell bent on getting one over everyone else in the dog-eat-world of finding their favourite spot, it was full of joy.
The carriages buzzed loudly with excited chatter. Strangers sparked up conversations. Kids laughed. Adults laughed. When was the last time you heard someone laughing on the underground?
It was truly beautiful.
I mean that.
I’ve worked in London on and off for fourteen years and I’ve never known anything like it. Instead of everyone holding their heads to the ground in morbid fear of catching anyone’s eye, they were holding their heads high – actually looking about them to see what was going on. Team GB fans mixed with USA or Jamaica or whoever. Everywhere you looked there were smiles.
If London 2012 did anything – it made this old city smile.
And I absolutely loved it – Even if I had to stand for twenty minutes every morning!
We are back in the lull now and the train carriage is a silent, miserable graveyard of lifelessness. The repetitive drudgery goes on. I do hope a similar buzz comes back in September when some truly inspirational athletes begin their work. I have tickets for the Paralympic athletics and I really am very excited about it. I hope I’m not the only one.
Lord Coe and all the LOCOG people, The World’s athletes and their crews, the Games Makers, the BBC (for its superlative coverage), London & Britain.