The end of the Beijing Olympics has created an atmosphere, particularly in Britain, in which the focus has narrowed to the point of fixation on the London Games of 2012. I’m slightly irritated by this; after all, there are the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver to enjoy. Here is a promotional video to remind everyone:
I prefer the Winter Games to the Summer ones; generally speaking, the Winter Games has not featured athletes who appear to be on the point of death due to heat exhaustion. In terms of environmental impact, the Winter Games are generally less extensive and thus require less emissions to build the facilities and to host the events. “Slushy” Winter Games can also serve as a poignant reminder of the perils of climate change: I recall that Turin’s 2006 Winter Games had weather issues.
Yes, Britain is far less successful in the Winter Games: the fact that this is not really a ski-resort country probably has much to do with it. Torvill and Dean, the golden pair from 1984, may have put people off ice dancing. Building a long-track speed skating rink in say, Slough (although it is an intruiging idea), would be rather preposterous. Still, it looks like an altogether more comfortable, more intimate affair. Plus, there’s ice hockey.
The Vancouver games should be particularly successful as Canada has a knack for hosting the Winter Olympics; the Winter Games of 1988 were held in Calgary, and I recollect them fondly. It’s a good advertisement for Canada as well; at the present time, I’m thinking about moving there, and have found out that I’m eligible under Canada’s points system to immigrate. It’s entirely possible the Vancouver games will “complete the sale”. Even if it doesn’t, it still looks like it will be fun, and certainly won’t be just a “speed bump” on the way to London.