Olympic fever has turned into Olympic mania here! Especially where transit is involved. Silly me, I thought we'd be closer to the opening ceremonies before things got really bad, but I learned my lesson yesterday trying to take Charlie to Hyde Park to meet some friends at the pool.
What normally is 25-30 minutes total turned into an hour and a half experience. We got on our usual bus, pulled onto the main road.... and sat. Forever. Twenty minutes later, we'd gone 3 blocks. Charlie was so cheerful on the bus in his "swimming costume" that he didn't want to get off and walk!
I finally persuaded him to and we went down to the tube stop, took two trains and came out a mile away from where we were going. It was a nice walk, though, can't complain too much. Well, Charlie could. He kept telling me he was tiiiiiired. I told him to try being 36 and pregnant if he wanted to know what tired felt like.
I'm pretty sure we saw at least two Olympic athletes with their trainers in the park while we were walking. Nobody I recognized, they just looked taller and more muscular than your average bear. So just a hunch.
We had a great time at the pool and playground with everyone. Had a picnic and Charlie wanted to stay long after everyone else had gone home. I finally got him to leave around 4. We walked to the north side of the park and took a taxi from there. It took a while to reach the edge of the park because someone had to take a lot of breaks:
Today the weather was beautiful again, so we headed to Holland Park to meet some friends at a kid's festival and to see the Olympic torch come through. After traveling all over the UK, the torch did a big lap around London today through all of the boroughs.
The festival was all about Olympic sports and had mini versions set up for the kids to become more familiar with them. Charlie tried the javelin toss and discuss before he noticed there was tennis nearby. He got something of a mini tennis lesson, which he loved. Then he went through the rugby obstacle course about 3 dozen times. I think he thought it was American football, though because the balls look very similar.
We had a little picnic at the playground afterwards and got some yummy ice cream! The symphony (which Charlie referred to as "the band") and chorus were rehearsing for a 30 minute ceremony that was going to occur when the torch arrived.
Finally, we heard lots of cheering and knew it was getting close. I was holding Charlie and my iPhone, snapping photos, so it was a bit tricky. She was running at first and then there was smoke on the torch and she started walking. By the time she passed us I figured out the flame had gone out.
About 10 feet after she passed us, she stopped and there was a huge mob around her while they re-lit the torch. Then she started running again!
When I got home, I looked up all the torch bearers for the day to try and figure out who she was. She looked very young. There was no photo of her on the site, but because she was so young I was able to deduce who she was (I think). She's a 16 year old who has done lots of youth sports leadership. Being a torch-bearer had to be quite an amazing thing to do at the young age of 16!
After two crazy days out and about in London, I think we are going to stick a little closer to home tomorrow. Archery is starting in the morning at the Lord's Cricket Grounds, near our house, so I'm going to attempt to get our tennis tickets printed at the Olympic Box Office there. We're going on Sunday and will know what match(es?) we will see on Centre Court by Saturday night.
Whatever we do, I just have to make sure to wear this kid out as much as possible. You'd think he'd be exhausted after the past two days (like I am), but he's not!