Friday, October 19, 2012

Olympic Fever

Well, dear readers, the Olympics are long-since over, but I wanted to share a bit about my "Olympic Experience." As I may have mentioned before, I was in the UK for the last year, so I was there when all that was going on. Thankfully, I was up in Edinburgh, mostly away from the craziness surrounding London. While I am sure that actually being in London for the Olympics was very cool, I'm glad that I didn't try to venture into that mess.

BUT I did want to participate in the Olympics to some extent. I posted last October about getting to hold the Olympic Torch, which was pretty great.

As the Olympics started heating up this summer, I got to have two more run-ins with that most patriotic of sporting events. First, the Olympic Torch was run through Edinburgh right past my dorm complex. Early of a June morning, my friends and I lined up to see it come by. It was pretty magical.

They weren't handing out American flags.

The advance guard

Here she comes!

Here she is!

There she goes!

There she's gone!

For those of you who have never witnessed the torch relay, there were lots of police and Olympic cars driving in front of and behind her (the torchbearer), and she was followed by a bus full of runners for later in the relay. These runners are not, as I would have liked to believe, responsible for waiting at a pre-designated place so that she can run toward them in slow motion and hand off the torch in a dramatic Chariots of Fire-like scene. Instead, they just follow in a bus until their turn. Oh well. It was still pretty cool to see.

Even more exciting, though, was getting to see an actual Olympic event. And I didn't even have to go to London! Thanks to the nature of Olympic soccer (football, for the rest of the world), they needed to do some of the preliminary games simultaneously, so several matches were at Hampton Stadium in Glasgow. So I saw one of the first events of this Olympics, when the US Women's Soccer team battled France. They won. Also, spoiler alert, the US Women won the gold in that event. So yeah, it was pretty awesome to be in the same stadium as the greatest women's soccer team in the world.

Sweet drumline on the way to the stadium

Impossible picture to get without having children in it


National anthems!

US Women dominating!
(Actually, they gave up two goals in the 
first half, but they made a very nice comeback.)

Honestly, I never feel so patriotic as I do during Olympic season, and watching the Olympics whilst living in another country really turned my patriotism up to eleven. What Americans living in America probably don't realize is that they are rarely called up to show their national pride. When you live abroad, you really have to overcompensate.

Or maybe that's just me. In fact, I was feeling so patriotic during my year in Scotland that I seriously considered buying these shoes:

While I, of course, still love America, I have since dialed it back. 

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