Sunday, August 15, 2004

Greece welcomes the world!!!

I woke up early as 3 a.m. just to watch Greece!!!
But more than that... to watch the opening ceremony of Athens 2004 Olympics that is in Greece!

Actually I wanted to write this in August 13 because that is the opening day but due to my other "businesses" I write it just today, anyway, it was live fed from NBN 4 becuase the local time there is 8 p.m. Finally right before my eyes I saw the rich heritage and places of Athens that someday I wish to visit. They show everything what Greece has to offer in the eyes of the world. The opening ceremony was a grandeur and really long, imagine! it lasted for almost 5 hours, it ended at 7 in the morning. I am happy to see Athens and the parading cultural presentation of Greece. The opening ceremony presentations was wonderful as it shows all about Greece in the huge stadium with a unique lake in the middle where all the presentation took place. The presentation and cultural parade showed tribute to all Greek philosophers and pioneers in different fields like math, geometry, art, sculpture and medecine. There was a centaur and a man and woman who kissed live as part of the presentation. The parade also showed what the Greeks known for - the Greek Mythology! Eros was there, All other gods and godessess was there, the Satyr was there! Hercules and the Hydra was there, and Alexander the was there and many others presented in a unique Greek statue way by showing showing the presentors in body paint statue! Their body paint made them like a human life statue!

This is is the emblem of the Athens 2004 Olympics. It is a unique Greek design of an olive wreath. Olive wreathes are the first medals in ancient olympics. This is courtesy of

Did I also mention that the opening ceremony were star-studded? Queen Sophia of Spain was there and former US president George Bush. Prince Albert of Monaco was there, Prince of Denmark (I don't know his name) and British Prime Minister Tony Blair and other political figures and socialites.

Then there are speechies from the heads and then the parade of of delegate athletes, by the way in Greek alphatbet! So they are rumble. I waited long as the 202 nations parade to look for team Philippines which came around at 6 am in local time because they were in 197 place! The team Philippines was in native dress like the others, the women were in ternos and men were in barong. Among the teams Austalia was one of the most lauded by the audience... maybe bec. the were the host nation in the last games. Others which were most lauded are Cyprus - maybe bec. they were Greece neigbhor countries and Iraq who got a standing ovation from the audience maybe bec. despite of the war they still manage to participate and everybody knows what happened to them. Its just a way of people's appreciation. Korea also had a warm cheer for marching again for the 2nd time unified! It was like "he he" for US because they were not that warm welcome by the audience. It good for them bec. I know they are the monster of the medals. The announcing of names were also unique because it is mentioned three times, one, the name of the country in their own language, second, in Greek languand and third in English. Gladly that the announcer pronounce "Pilipinas" correctly.

By the team Greece entered there was thunderous cheer from the crowd cheering Ellas! Ellas! Ellas! The Grrek word for Greece. And I think they are the most numbered athlete in the game because they filled the whole stadium and everyone was so proud and happy as seen in the camera.

And Bjork was there, who performed a song number. The Olympic torch followed but before there was another presention of recounting the hosts countries from 1896 in which Athens hosted the first modern games up to 2004 where the crowd made a thuderous cheer again! They presented it with a man running carrying a flag with an olive design in it. Then each time a hosted country is mention he passes after a ribbon, when the World Wars 1 and 2 mentioned he would stop. When World War 1 was mentioned he dropped to his kness I thought it was true but it was part of the presention. It was really unique presentation from the Greeks... almost all were unique.

In the center stage stage there was an olive tree and the water in the middle also did gone before the parade of athletes bec. they will be place there. It was incredibly how they did make the water gone out of the center of the stadium. The lighting of the torch was incredible and ceremonial. Great Greek athletes that gave honor to Greece passes one by one torch until it reach a tall torch which I think computer-controlled. It was so tall that it passes the height of the stadium. It was a beautiful sight to see. Then fireworks were lighted in the stadium which was so beautiful bec. some were rainbow color I mean all the seven color were present. It was also wonderful to see right before your eyes.

Later in the noon I also did watch the replay in at 12pm and at 10pm. God! I'm really an Olympic fan! I am also thinking if I will make again a documentary compilation about this year's Olympics, bec. in Sydney 2000 Olympics I did have compilation of pictures from the magazine and newpapers and I had it bookbined. I am thinking if I am going to repeat it again... what do you think?

In the afternoon there were already live fed of the games. I've watched first Philippines compettion in swimming. Miguel Molina was 8th in his heat (I felt "nakakahiya!") and Miguel Mendoza was 1st in his heat. We were holding our breath as we watch them (I was watching with my family) and we're happy in cheers 'bout Mendoza who place first in the heat!

In Sunday I bought newspapers for pictures and news. I 've decided to continue my compilation in Athens 2004 Olympics, oh my this another "business". I learned that Camat, a Philippine boxer was beaten by Russia and other news 'bout the games. I was hoping that the campaign for the gold will come true, my support only to the Philippine athletes was only a prayer. Even GMA had a nationwide speech for the team Philippines saying that winning doesn't matter but the spirit of friendship and humanity is in reign. She also said many inspirational speech in support for the athletes. For me, we are thirsting for the gold and I hope team Philippines will won. We long for the gold medal and glory for our country, so I say... Go team Philippines!!!

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