As London prepares for the opening ceremony of the Olympics tomorrow, Walter and I will be on a train to Newcastle upon Tyne and then on to the north Northumbrian coast for four days of walking. We are escaping. But not completely. Our companions will be good friends, one of whom will be returning to London next week for a stint as a purple uniformed official Olympic Helper, stationed on the embankment of the Thames near the Globe Theatre, a great spot to be.
Walter is determined not to be excited about the goings on in East London and elsewhere and I have some sympathy with his cynicism and irritation. It does seem the most outrageous waste of money (lots of it OUR money as we live in London) at this time of great austerity and hardship for many. But I also have a sneaking wish to be part of this event, to be distracted from continual bad news and just let it be fun. It was good to read Martin Kettle’s column in The Guardian today expressing very similar sentiments. As Martin says , leave your cynicism and let the games commence http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jul/25/london-2012-cynicism-games-commence
I’ll be back at the end of next week.