I’m confused about the Olympics.
There’s a veritable trough of reasons not to support London 2012 – the corporate monopolies, the Olympic lanes, the seemingly unfair ticket distribution and the hoard of opportunistic east-end business owners, landlords and entrepreneurs trying to capitalise on the occasion and squeeze as much money out of tourists and Londoners as is humanly possible. Not to mention the eleven or so billion pounds of expenditure in a time of austerity and public service cuts.
However last week I was lucky enough to attend the technical rehearsal for the opening ceremony, in the stadium, and it was amazing. By far one of the best things I’ve seen in my life, Danny Boyle’s homage to the UK was a colourful extravaganza of pomp, wit, eccentricity and cultural relevance. And Underworld did the soundtrack. Underworld!
So now I don’t know what to think. Except that the best way forward is to throw myself into the next two weeks of sport and celebration, make the most of the incredible atmosphere on my doorstep, not whinge about the extra million people clogging up the tube network and try to forget about the number of nurses or help schemes for the elderly the Olympic funding pot could have paid for.
Here are some of my favourite shots of the opening ceremony…
All images copyright Claire Shropshall.