Michael Phelps is a swimming machine, but we have to give the breaststroke crown to the Japanese Kosuke Kitajima. I have to confess, I can’t swim (…) so I guess I can’t really talk about swimming techniques. Nevertheless, my hours in front of the Beijing Water Cube events could give me some credibility, perhaps? No?
Well, can I just say that I love watching Kitajima swim then? He seems so comfortable in the water. Here’s a little video of him when he broke a world record during the 2008 Japan Open.
I must admit, I am not the biggest fan of gymnastics, I only watch that discipline once every 4 years. The thing is that when all those olympians begin their routine, I just can’t switch channels (yes, u r right, all the other channels are also broadcasting the Olympics, but it is not my point here). I can’t look away from their routine because their performance is astonishing. I just can’t believe how they do all those maneuvers. They are so quick, jump so high, and incredibly strong (especially on the rings).
China won 9 of the 14 gold medals in gymnastics artistic. Lately, there is a lot of echo about under aged female gymnasts. I prefer not to discuss about this matter.
I would rather share with you how much I respect Yang Wei, the individual all-around gold medal winner. He was absolutely dazzling in each of his routine.
I heard a beautiful story today, there is this woman, Jujie Luan, who won the gold medal in fencing for China during the 1984 Olympic Games. 24 years later, at the age of 50, she wants to go duel in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, but this time, representing Canada. Obviously, she doesn’t need to win a medal to gain my respect; just to see how passionate she is for her sport, she is my new idol. Watching her first battle at the foil competition was so inspiring. Although she is way older than her opponent, she fenced with authority by reacting aggressively after each of her point, and with her experience, she won against the Tunisian Ines Boubakri.
Because of Jujie Luan, I have discovered how fencing is an incredible sport and how an athlete’s will goes beyond what we can imagine. Thank you for your inspiration.
“As an athlete, if you come across a setback and flinch, then you’re not a true athlete.”
I know, this is a too easy choice, yes, he is already a big superstar. Nonetheless, I wanted to emphasize the grandeur of his quest: mister Phelps wants 8 gold medals. Not just 8 medals, but 8 gold medals, he might win more Olympics titles than the Canadian nation overall (no comment). Anyhoo, this swimmer won his first gold medal in the 200m freestyle. How many medals do you think he will win during these Beijing Olympic Games?
The first Olympics event that was broadcasting on my TV is weightlifting. Because I watch the Canadian channel, they were presenting the performance of Marilou Dozois-Prévost from my hometown, Montreal. It is nice that we get to know more about our athletes.
Another nation that I follow very closely is China (of course). The host country didn’t wait long for their first medal. This superstar, Chen Xia Xia not only won the first gold medal for her nation, but also broke 2 Olympic records. This 25-year-old snatched and jerked a total of 212 kg.
Chen Xia Xia
On this lucky day 8/8/8, I woke up early to be able to catch the opening ceremony at 8h08 Beijing time.
Although I am an ocean away from the Middle Kingdom, I could feel the electricity in that Bird’s Nest Stadium. The Opening Ceremony of these XIX th Olympics was breathtaking. It started in a spectacular way with the 2008 drummers at the countdown. Hearing them roaring one phrase of Confucius: “Friends have come from afar, how happy we are.” was very touching.
The calligraphy part was absolutely stunning where hundreds of persons inside boxes bobbed up and down to create the Chinese character ‘he,’ which means both harmony and peace. The timing of the execution amazed me.
The taiji performance was brilliant too: such a great control of the body. The dove formed by the “enlighted” persons was flying to our hearts.
I also admire the subtle transition they did from the artists performance to the parade of athletes where more than 10 000 of them left their footprints on the unique canvas.
Although I cannot describe all the magical acts of the Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony, I hope that you were all moved by the pride of the Chinese who are so happy to welcome friends from all over the world. A lot of controversy has been stirred around this important event, but let’s all wish for One World One Dream 同一个世界 同一个梦想
I invite you to leave your thoughts as well about the Opening Ceremony.
I’ve tried to find some YouTube videos to share with you the beauty of the Opening Ceremony (for those who have been able to miss it!) and I must say that many were no longer available due to a copyright claim. If you have found some videos, please share them with us.