I love the winter Olympics. I am amazed by all of the down-the-mountain snow sports — from the skiing and unbelievable ski jumping to the skeleton, luge and bobsledding. Tom and I watched the Olympic trials for the downhill skiing, and figured that this sport has to be one of the hardest on the body — the jarring across those moguls — this sport begs for a knee and hip replacement before the age of 50. I think all of the snow sports have an added level of difficulty over the summer games. It’s the element of ice, snow and variances in those that are unpredictable and exciting for us!
My Mom and I both watch the figure skating. I feel like I’m less impressed with the athletes the last couple of Olympics than years ago. Maybe that’s because there haven’t been many US figure skaters in the top three in the last 8-12 years. There used to be true greats and entertainers like Scott Hamilton, Brian Boitano, Katharina Witt (she wasn’t even from the US), Nancy Kerrigan, Kristi Yamaguchi and Michelle Kwan. I watched the Olympic trials and World Championships a couple of weeks ago and didn’t recognize anyone but the announcers, nor did I think that too many of the skaters were really that good. We’ll see what Sochi brings for the USA teams!
So I’ll be watching this year! The opening ceremony is Friday, February 7th. I read somewhere where there will be over 1,000 Russian children singing, among all the other entertainment and introduction of the athletes. That should be pretty powerful! The facilities built in Sochi are absolutely gorgeous — my niece, Megan would love the architecture and cool textures and materials used — especially the Bolshoy or ice hockey arena. The TeamUSA apparel has been designed by Ralph Lauren and is over-the-top patriotic. It’s too bad that the athletes and fans can’t wear it outside of the games themselves.
The athletes are leaving their families at home this year. It’s so unfortunate that terrorism in our world has instilled fear at the games. Truthfully, I never heard of Chechen terrorists until the Boston Marathon bombings this past year. And now they’re threatening the Sochi games in a very major way — all in the name of their Allah. I don’t understand how so many Muslims become Jihadists and commit acts of terrorism in the name of their God. How can someone truly believe that it’s God’s desire to kill innocent people and instill fear by committing acts of terrorism where people least suspect it? There will be more than 2,500 athletes from 88 nations at the games this year — athletes that train their entire lives for the chance of a lifetime — to compete in the Olympics. And now this threat looms.
I’m going to focus on all that is good. And if we all focus on what is good and truly believe, we can overcome the evil among us. And I pray that God keeps our athletes, their families, all the visitors to Sochi and the local spectators safe. And for every medal that is won, we’ll cheer for the victories of honest competition and camaraderie. And, we’ll celebrate the coming together of 88 nations in the spirit of peace and harmony — standing side by side with courage — in true Olympic spirit.
So maybe our US athletes can’t sport around Russia in their USA gear, but we can! I think I’ll buy a Ralph Lauren sweater to show support of the USA Olympic Team. Okay, well at those prices, maybe I’ll just find something red, white and blue!
Always B E L I E V E !