Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Watching the Olympics

I stayed the last two nights in Victoria. Really nice city on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, the largest island in the west coast of Canada or the United States. Found some good eats, got a nice, free tour of the British Columbia Parliament building and biked around the city.

The Hostelling International hostel in Victoria has this tiny TV room. At one point last night, there were about 10 of us crammed in there watching the Olympics. Canadian broadcasting does a great job of televising the games. I was the lone American. There were people from Britain, Austria, Australia, Germany, Canada, South America. It was quite an international affair and a lot of fun. We were all thoroughly impressed with how easily the Chinese routed everyone in the men's gymnastics team event, all laughed when the presenter tried to put another medal around the neck of the Japanese gymnast he had just given a medal to, and were tranfixed by Phelps and how easily he won in the semis of the 200m Butterfly.

It was a great moment: an international room of spectators, watching athletes compete at the international level. We cheered when our home countries did well (Canada has yet to win a medal) but really we cheered for all countries because it was the Olympics.

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