Fragments from the Australia Diaries 2000 (part 19) - Olympics
|Proud of our face tattoos at the Olypmics - (erm, ookkaay)|
The infamous Sydney Olympics 2000. With no pre-planning and just rocking up on the day, we managed to score ourselvessome prize tickets for the athletics. However, the seats were 3 rows from the back, in fact, you practically had to be propelled to the seats through a series of levers and pulleys.
The exciting cutting edge events lined up for that day were the men’s 400m hurdles heats (not bad), the long jump (not really my cuppa tea, but a fine Olympic event if ever there was one), the discus (fat blokes chucking frisbees) and the last lap of the women's marathon (fascinating).
To immerse ourselves in the spirit, we attempted to purchase transfer face tattoo’s which all the cool kids had. They were all out of Ireland, no Aussies, so we were left with a choice of Great Britain or New Zealand. A tough choice. New Zealand it was. Much to our amusement we were greeted with shouts of “Go You Kiwis” wherever we went.
On to the events themselves…
The hurdles were exhilarating, these guys run at speeds you can’t comprehend on TV, they were like bullets from a gun. As the only name we vaguely recognized was Colin Jackson (English bloke who appears in Hello magazine every now and then), we cheered him on. He won, so we gave it sox while confused onlookers watched as the Kiwi girls with Irish accents cheered the Brit!
The long jump, a few famous faces, a few good jumps, like I said not my bag baby, big swinging knickers so the person can hop skip and jump, get off the track and find a playground, jeeezzz. (Don't mind me, i'm just jealous). It even managed to send Lian to sleep (asleep at the Olympics, you cry, don’t worry, we took her outside later and repeatedly slapped her).
The discus, this event goes on the whole time the other ones are going on because nobody pays attention to it anyway. We perked up when an Irishman was called up, it was hilar. Everyone before him had engaged in fame-like stretching routines, followed by pained concentration and practice throws culminating in the final throw and roar. Jack the lad, of course, strolls up, casually picks up the discus and without so much as a howdeyedo he tosses the discus towards the crowd. I was morto!
Now, I had been dreading the women’s marathon, people being pushed beyond exertion, trippin around in circles, dribbling, drooling, their clothes clinging to them with their own body waste, not my idea of a fun watch. But, I ate my words, the place came alive, the first person into the stadium and the music went WILD, Mexican waves everywhere, people clapping, and flags flying. By this stage we had maneuvered ourselves to better seats, so we had prime viewing. I was well into it. Didn’t want to leave.
Hang on, that is not the end of my Olympic experience. Katrina had won tickets at work to the synchronized swimming (I hear you laughing), but it was actually quite entertaining. We were right at the front, and of course made loads of noise (which just wasn’t on), we were chatting away, I was constantly in and out of my seat, my mobile was ringing away goodo. We were a holy disgrace and should have been dunked in the pool for our misdemeanours.
The swimmers were so talented and not a bit like how I had imagined they would look. I thought they would be very lean with shoulders you could break bricks off. But in fact, they were solid ladies. They were obviously all muscle, but without the rippling hulk thing going on. Good on 'em, no point putting a straw in a pool (save that for the cocktails later). I must say, there were some movements these girls did that did not only defy nature, I’m pretty sure in certain countries it’s gotta be illegal!