Celebration Time

Here in the UK, you’d have to be a hermit not to know the country’s celebrating big time right now. In June we have the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and in July we’re hosting the Olympic Games.

Not liking crowds too much, I’ve always been a sort of armchair enthusiast to these events, but this week I found myself smack bang in the middle of one. I was working in Bath on Tuesday, which just happened to be the day the Olympic Torch came to the city. With a colleague I went, a little reluctantly, to see if we could find a place to watch the event. The temperatures were soaring, the crowds were gathering, so we gingerly made our way to where we thought there’d be more space.

As we waited a few parade-type buses passed by, accompanied by a police escort. Everyone was in such a great mood, and soon we were really enjoying ourselves. As we waited, a fabulous party atmosphere built and people were chatting and laughing together.

We hadn’t realised or planned it, but were were very close to where the torch bearers would exchange the Olympic Flame, which gave us a great opportunity for a photo of the next runner as he stood patiently waiting for the flame to arrive.

Then we heard an amazing roar and along came Olympic Champion, Jason Gardener, holding the Torch high so everyone could see. By this time, my colleague and I were well caught up in the atmosphere, flag waving and shouting along with the best of them. We must have screamed like banshees at one point, because Jason turned to where we were standing and I got this great shot. You can just see the flame by the side of the church.

Having had such a fabulous time, I might even be tempted to venture out and join the celebrating crowds again sometime πŸ™‚ How about you? Do you like to join in local/national celebrations?


10 responses to “Celebration Time

  1. Oh, how totally FUN! I’m so glad you got to experience this. I’ve not had the opportunity, although my husband did about 20 years ago and he still talks about how cool it was.
    I’m not much of a crowd person. I’ll do it, but I get anxious. However, I have been known to join the throngs on occasion, like for the changing of the guard when we were in your lovely country. πŸ™‚
    It’s a holiday weekend here. Memorial Day. So a lot of folks have Monday off work. This is a quiet weekend for us as we tend to stay home on days most folks don’t have to go to work. The roads get pretty crazy busy around here…kind of link the Square Mile in central London, eh?

    • Yes, it’s weird how an ‘occasion’ can whip us up into ignoring our dislike of crowds, Laurie. Like you, we tend not to venture out too far on holiday weekends. We have a long one next week for the Queen’s Jubilee. Monday and Tuesday are public holidays – the supermarkets go crazy and sell out of everything!
      Enjoy Memorial Day!

  2. I remember when the Olympic torch went by here, gosh guess it was over 20 years ago now. We went over to see it and got some pictures though there wasn’t a lot of crowd on the stretch we were at.

    I don’t usually like the crowds either and you can usually see better from the TV but the ambience of being there and sharing gives off an excitement like nothing else. I remember when we up to the Worlds Fair in Seattle. So very many many years ago now. If it’s a days drive and we don’t have to worry about lodging we go, and it looks like London might be a great opportunity for you.

    Loved the pictures.

    • Viewing events on TV usually suits me too, Lavada. Best seats in the house πŸ˜‰
      Yes, London is an easy day out for us, but no way am I braving the hords for a seat at the Olympic Games. That’s a step too far for me.
      Enjoy your Memorial Day weekend.

  3. Valerie J. Patterson

    What awesome pictures and what an awesome experience for you, Tricia! Loved the last shot of the torch bearer. Something you will remember for a long time to come.

    Crowds? I can take ’em or leave ’em. It just depends on what the crowd is for. πŸ˜› The bubbly hubby and I would love to go to Time Square one New Year’s Eve, but I tend to think I would like the experience better from the safety of a hotel balcony than in the thick of things. While I absolutely enjoy being in New York City, there’s something about that huge of a crowd that intimidates me! πŸ˜›

  4. Thanks, Valerie. Wow, Times Square on New Year’s Eve would be fantastic, but I agree, the view from a hotel balcony would be preferable. I usually watch the London celebrations from the comfort of my TV chair πŸ™‚

  5. What a fantastic day you had. So cool. Love the photos. That’s something to treasure always. I’m a big fan of staying far, far away from crowds so I probably would’ve liked the balcony view that Valerie and Tricia mentioned. I’ve been in times square the day before new years eve and that was awful. I shudder to think of the actual night.

  6. What a lovely day you had, Tricia. I used to work with the wife of Jason Gardiner’s trainer – he often visited our office. Nice chap. It’s good that the Olympics and the Jubilee celebrations are bringing people out and enjoying themselves together. It’s what we need right now.
    And Times Square on New Year’s Eve must be fantastic. A couple of times many years ago I went to Trafalgar Square London for New Years Eve – that was in the days you could get in the fountain! Great fun but I do find crowds, any crowds overwhelming, don’t even like going shopping when it’s busy. Not agrophobic but I get very uncomfortable in crowded places.

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