Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Olympic impressions, vol 2

Apart from inside the venues, there was lots of colour in the Olympic Park.

Some was in the building ...

(photo Wikipedia)

... and some in the planting.

These thousands of meadow flowers reminded me of my spring visit to Ancient Olympia, where I saw carpets of anemones and daisies.

And they had planted themselves!

I imagine that in April 432BC, when Themis, the hero of The Boy with Two Heads, arrived there, the whole area would have been bright with multi-coloured spring flowers. He would have seen them gradually die back as rain became scarce and the summer sun dried everything up (unlike in London this year!), so that by the time the Games started in early August, all the flowers would have disappeared.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Olympic Impressions, vol 1

London is now gearing up for the Paralympics, but I'm not going to be able to go to them after all. So my live Olympic Experiences are now over for 2012.

What impressed me most at the main Games?

One thing was the colours!

You probably noticed this on television, but it intrigued me that many of the venues had a trade-mark colour. (There were 43 venues listed throughout the UK, and I and my family only visited 7, so I am over-generalising!)

Horse Guards Parade - Beach Volleyball

Purple was for Horse Guards Parade - and the Serpentine:

The Serpentine in Hyde Park - Marathon Swimming 
The Serpentine in Hyde Park - Marathon Swimming dais

The North Greenwich Arena was pink ...

North Greenwich Arena - Women's Trampoline
... while the Riverbank Arena went for blue (mainly).

Riverbank Arena - Hockey

Earls Court arena - Volleyball
Earl's Court was turquoise for the Volleyball ...

Copper Box - Handball (photo: Wikipedia)
... as was the Copper Box for Handball.

The Stadium itself had its black and white seating. But the green of the grass was the colour the spectators saw most of, day ...

... and night.

All these colours contrast with what the scene would have been like in Ancient Olympia. There, the only Stadium would have had a pale sandy track. The sides where the spectators stood would have been almost bare earth under the relentless August sun. In Ancient Olympia it was the temples, the statues, and the crowds that provided the colour.

... to be continued with other impressions ...

Saturday, 4 August 2012

London Olympics: Walk in the Park

Here are a few images from around the Olympic Stadium during my visit to the Games yesterday. The weather was better than last time ... 

... and the Velodrome looked like a skateboard among the meadow flowers. (Although, I'm told it's know as the Pringle ...)

The River Lee runs through the Park,
hosting security patrols and phone boxes ...

... or rather, partial phone boxes.

As dark falls, the Orbit seems to dance, beckoning to the massive stadium ... 

... and, as in ancient times, the full moon shines on the Precinct as the crowds disperse on the middle day of the Games (approximately!).

The Boy is free!

The Boy with Two Heads e-book is a free download from Amazon this weekend. 

Lovely Tweet about it:
"Got the Olympic bug? Looking for children's books with an Olympic theme? Try this (10 yrs+) - free download this weekend"

More than 100 downloads overnight. Thanks to all!!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Olympic Park visit ...

... with The Boy, on a grey but stimulating day ...

... to see some strange, ...

... confusing, ...
           ... and enchanting sights.

The Olympic Park in London, August, 2012 ...

is a little different from Ancient Olympia in 300 BC,

but the atmosphere of jamboree, 
the exhibition of highs and lows in human nature,
and the celebration of excellence, 
seem to have been very similar.