I can't believe it's been two whole years already since the start of one of the greatest Games of all time, defying all doomsday predicitions and forecasts. Athens, the city where the modern Olympic Games began, and the Hellenic Republic, or Greece, where the Olympic Games were born, gave the world, in my opinion, the greatest Opening Ceremony ever. It was a wonderful show from start to finish, with the exception of Bjork, so I'll give Torino its due there in having Luciano Pavarotti, though I'm no fan of opera obviously. Torino did put on a good show this past February, but with very little, if any, public support throughout Italy, and from the government itself, compared to the exuberant enthusiasm for the 2004 Games within Greece (how could there not be when you wait 108 years to welcome home one of your proudest creations and contributions to the world), Athens wins hands down, though I do feel sorry for Torino, having their Games sandwiched between the homecoming of the Games to their birthplace in 2004 and the highly anticipated Olympic debut in the People's Republic of China. Plus I don't recall anyone in Greece attacking the torch en route to Athens and trying to throw it away. (I'm sorry if I sound like I'm bashing Italy, because I'm not, all I'm doing is just reporting the facts)
I know there are a lot of you on here who don't think too kindly of the Athens Games, but everything was ready on time, and all the venues and pblic transports worked (then again I wasn't there, but man I wish I was). Granted, I wish the taxpayers, no matter what country, didn't have to bear the brunt of paying off an Olympic Games.
I hope it doesn't take another 108 years for the Games to return home. Hopefully by the time Hellas hosts once again, the sponsors, NOCs and EU take the financial burden off the taxpayers. Greece, two years on, should still be proud of what it accomplished. A nearly flawless Opening, outstanding organization, tough love leadership, but most important, enthusiastic support for Games. What an incredible 17 days. HELLAS HELLAS HELLAS!