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Citius Altius Fortius - Castaways on the Isles of Wonder

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I would like to share with you my adventures on the "Isles of Wonder" - the London Olympics will be the first ones, which I will attend in person.

I will stay in London the whole time of the Olympic Games and I am planning to use this blog as a kind of diary - I would like to post some pics from the city and from the events, which I will attend.

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My first Olympic memories are from Lake Placid 1980. I remember that I watched some of the events - every German, who watched the cross country, will remember the phrase "Where is Behle?" from the German commentator...

Moscow 1980 was boycotted by the Federal Republic of Germany and nearly nothing was shown on West German TV from Moscow.

Four years later I fell in love with the Olympics - I watched 'Sarajevo' and 'Los Angeles' nearly completely on TV.

I watched all following Olympic Games in TV - when London was selected I said to myself:

a.) I'm anglophile (since I am a citizen of Hamburg you are anglophile: we have the phrase "we are so British that we open our umbrellas when it's start raining in London")

b.) London is around the corner

c.) I can speak English

d.) time has come that I want to attend Olympics in person

e.) it will take years until Olympics are hold so close by

When I attended the Athletics World Championships 2009 in Berlin I knew I have to go to London for the Olympics.

I started to plan my first Olympic vacation right after Berlin 2009.

I am getting more and more excited - in three days my Olympic adventure will start!!!

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Well, it is strange - I started to plan to go to London for the Olympics several years ago and I am really here now!!!

I had no problems at the border control at all - it worked like an greased machine.

The atmosphere in the city is very international - it is packed with people from all over the world and all want to share a common experience = the Olympic Games.

I am looking forward for tomorrow, when the Games really start: I am stranded on the Isles of Wonder - and the spell of wonder has already 'enchanted' me!!!!


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I awoke today with a kind of anticipation - today the London Olympics will start for real - I was just at Mark & Spencers at the Cutty Sark and everywhere are volunteers.

A light rain shower in the early morning cooled down the air - which is great, since London was a melting pot yesterday (in the real sense of meaning) - next to me sat a guy in a suit (he was on the way to the meeting of a NOC) in the tube and his sweat "stood" on his forehead...

I will enjoy the day here in London and I will try to blog a little bit later with some more details.



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Well, that was absolutely freakin' amazing!!!!

I had a calm day until I had to leave for the Opening Ceremony - the DLR worked perfectly and as a "ticket holder" you were guided by very friendly volunteers from Stratford Station to the entrance of the Olympic Park. There I had to queue, but that seems to be more a matter of my "being to early" than a result of a slowly safety check. The soldiers were friendly but efficient, too.

Only a part of the Olympic Park was open for the Ceremony - I was in the official merchandising shop (you had to queue to get in there, too, but that was really really fast) - then I met my friend daveypodmore at the Orbit.

Then I went to my seat in the stadium - and I was blown away: the seat was perfect - I had a very overall view of the stadium.

(the only bad thing was that beside me was a group of Serbian fans - and they drank too lot and nearly every ten minutes one of the 7 guys had to go to the loo - first it wasn't a "problem", but these guys kept on drinking beer and made even fun of the fact, that they drank too much beer - just one phrase: "The golden Seal was broken" by them...)

I liked the "pre-show":

your eyes found every time a new detail: the cricket match, the goats, the cows, the horses, the geese etc. etc. - appr. 45 minutes before the show two persons started to explain the LED-lamps and what we should do. Then the little rain shower started - and we started to sing a "sing-a-long" to get the rain away - and it worked!!!

The countdown started (I just got goosebumps when I was writing that) - the noise of the Red Arrows was crazy (in a positive way)!!!

The ceremony started!!!!

I liked that the four countries of the UK was represented by their "anthem" (I was always a huge fan of anthems) - the choir was in the upper part of the bowl - maybe 80 metres away from my seat...

The Pandemonium was "introduced" by Kenneth Brannagh with a quote out of Shakespeares "The Tempest" - and then a real storm started!!

I loved this segment - it was amazing how the "stage" was changed (and again a next "goosebumps-shower" hit me) - the chimneys - the wheels of a steam machine - the ship etc. etc. - and suddenly these "torrid rings" appeared and formed the Olympic Rings!!!

What a stunning idea!!!

On Her Majesty's Service - was the next part - I was always a fan of James Bond and it was "funny" to see how Dennis Craig was the chauffeur of her Majesty Queen Elisabeth, the II. - it was funny to watch the flight of her from Buckingham Palace to the Olympic Stadium... Well, and I was surprised to see that Liz is still able to make parachute jump!!! ;)

It was a pitty that I couldn't see that jump from my seat - I saw just one/two seconds the parachute above the stadium, then the roof stopped my view...

What an entrance of her majesty!!!

The "NHS-segment" was fun to watch - I liked the "nightmares" and the Mary Poppins, who saved the children - the dancing nurses were great!!!


Rowan Atkinson was great in Chariots of Fire - we had a lot of fun in the stadium!!!

The Pop segment was breathtaking!!! I loved it!!! We sang the songs together in the stadium and I was head-banging (when the song "demanded" headbanging!!) And at the same time it was so british - when I was the first time in the UK it was a duty to watch Top of the Pops

I think the next segment gave a little rest after the previous one - it was a solemn moment - and at the same time I had the impression that it was a kind of moment before the Isreali athletes, too, who died in Munich (40 year ago), since the stadium speaker announced that we should think on everybody, who died and can't share the London Olympics with us right now (my god i start crying, when I am typing this) - the hymn was very well sung and presented - that "moon" looked great: Abide With Me

The Entrance of the teams - well, there was something completely new to me and I do not now if this was done in previous Opening Ceremonies = not all teams circle the stadium - the German team was guided from the track after 3/4 of the round - the flag bearer was guided alone to the "hill" and the flag was sticked in a mixed "order" into the gras.

And another thing - I had the impression that teams were "pushed" by a line of drummers to go faster, when they walked too slowly...

The Bicycle-Doves looked impressive in the stadium - and the flying bicycle, too

The Games were declared open by her majesty - I heared Queen Elizabeth voice for the first time in person

The lightning of the cauldron was nicely made - I have to admit that I didn't understand/don't understand why it had been seven athletes, who lighted the cauldron

That lightning of the cauldron looked amazing! You couldn't see the "metal-sticks" from the distance - it looked like that the flames crawl to the top.

I have to admit that I am not a fan of "centre-field-cauldrons", but I like it - it looked stunning...

My conclusion: it was one of my freakin' best life experiences!!!

Thank you London, Thank you UK!

I am spelled by the Isles of Wonder

It time now that we got spelled by the athletes, who are the most important part of Olympic Games!!

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yeah - the opening ceremony of London changed my "point of view" toward Olympic Games. I don't mean that my approach has been changed totally, but - it is like my experience in Düsseldorf 2011 with the Eurovision Song Contest: TV is great but the real thing is so much better!!!

(by the way one remark: I watched the Olympics on BBC yesterday and I think it would be nice if the IOC allows that the online broadcast of the different TV-rights-owners is reachable from the host country during the Olympics/Paralympics or that the hosting TV-channels introduce an "international stream channel" - I really don't have anything against British athletes, but I would like to see how the "own" team is performing at the events - of course I am aware that the BBC has to focus on the own athletes, but it would be a nice gesture of the IOC to change its mind of media policies in future - just to make it clear: I enjoy the broadcast of the BBC - e.g. the broadcast of the cycling road event was just great, because it showed the audience, but it would have had been nice if I had been able to reach the online broadcast of ARD or ZDF - IOC? Please!!!)

Here are some more pics of the Opening Ceremony











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some more pics:

I don't know why but the last six pics are not shown - maybe there is a total limit of photos in one thread

@ Rob - could you lift up this limit for me for this blog? I have tickets for 16 events in total - and I would love to post some more pics (and I think the others would love to see these pics too)


I got a msg from GBModerator - I tried it another time and it works again - don't know why it didn't work with this post

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