Opening ceremony day is like my own personal national holiday, which is kind of a bummer when the rest of the world is intent on doing its normal thing. But thankfully, for this Olympiad, I'm working at one of very few places that understands. So, for this Olympiad, I actually got to celebrate!
The festivities started in the morning with a Team USA torch lighting ceremony at the Olympic Training Center, so that came with the added benefit of returning to my old stomping grounds and seeing some folks I hadn't seen since I left in December. :) There was breakfast, and then we went up to the roof and the U.S. Paralympic sledge hockey team lit the cauldron!
Then it was off to work. My hours during the Olympics are understandably bizarre, seeing as we have to compensate for an 11-hour time difference, so my shift was 10 a.m.-3 p.m. MT. It was awesome because, with the time difference, I started work smack in the middle of the opening ceremony. My assignment? Create a photo gallery!
Let me break it down for you. Opening ceremonies are my jam. The Winter Olympics are my jam. So making a photo gallery of a Winter Olympic Opening Ceremony as it was happening was just... indescribable. :)
The festivities continued at 5 p.m. that evening, with an Olympic celebration extravaganza in downtown Colorado Springs. I put in some extra time at work to hang around until 5, and then walked a block to see what was what and spend some time with some cool people. There'd been an Olympic celebration over the summer that I'd gone to, and this one was pretty similar. There were sport information booths and demonstrations (including snowmobile jumping), and a big screen where the opening ceremony would be aired.
It's things like this that remind me why I love the Olympics so much. It's that community, festival-like feeling. Everyone was decked out in their Team USA finest, drinking hot chocolate or vodka (da, Russia!), ringing cowbells and cheering. It's a unity and palpable excitement that you don't really get on this large a scale during any other time.
I, however, decided to leave after a relatively short time. Why? 1) It was cold. Much warmer than the negative temperatures of the previous few days, yes, but even after 45 minutes my face was going numb. I would've been miserable before the ceremony even started. And 2) I need to be able to sit and watch and concentrate
How did everyone else spend Opening Ceremony day? :)