Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Citius, Altius, Fortius

Ten years ago today, the Opening Ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games was held on a windy and cloudy evening which gave way the next morning to the crispest and clearest of days followed by two weeks of carnival atmosphere during which Sydney seemed like paradise on earth. It all succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.

A year later, almost to the day, and events in New York and elsewhere changed everything. Innocence was lost. Ansett Airlines, the official carrier for our games disappeared virtually overnight. North and South Korea who marched together at the ceremony retreated to their former entrenched positions. Marion Jones, the star turn of the sprint events was stripped of her gold medals and disgraced by her admission of drug taking. And so on and so forth.

Nevertheless all manner of celebrations are planned for today perhaps in silent hope that we might somehow return to those idyllic conditions.

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