And so the Olympic Games are over.
I’m always a bit melanchonic when the Closing Ceremony comes. Don’t you feel a little sad when the fire dies in that caudron? But then, as all good things, we can look forward for next time.
I was on holiday so I could really enjoy the Games… well, all exept the track-and-fields because they happened at unholy times here in Italy (like from 1:00 to 5:00 am… I just couldn’t handle it). It’s kind of a shame not to see the track-and-fields events on an Olimpiad, but then, what I did watch was very very nice on my part. Italy did very well, let me tell you, and with a few emotional moments.
You know I don’t normally talk about primarily Italian stuff, but these are the Games, let me share it with you. And please, share your own country’s victories in the comments. These are the Games. It’s about ‘our country’ and about ‘all of us’ too.
So let me be parochial to the end and give a special mention to Elia Viviani first of all, who won golden medal in the omnium and is a child of Isola della Scala like me.
It is always nice when your country wins, but when someone from your own town wins is a completely different, exhilarating sensation. You know, thinking that he was born here, in a place that offers so little, and still he managed to become one of the best in his specialty. He travelled to the other side of the world to compete in the most important sport games and if this were not enough, he won a gold medal. In a fantastic match too. He even fell, run down by another biker, but he stood up, climbed on his bike again and rode to victory.
There are so many good moments of the Games I’ll remember. Tania Caniotto, who won two medals in diving, including a silver medal in the last match of her career. I was so happy for her. I’ve followed her all through her career and she has been unlucky so many times. I’m happy her last dive was such a success.
Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai who were the first Italian beach volley team ever competing in a final match and won a silver… after Daniele Lupo defeated cancer last year.
Nicolò Campriani who won not one, but two gold medals in shooting. Diana Bacosi and Chiara Cainero who won gold and silver in the skeet (beautiful match that too). Giovanni Pellielo, who at 46 has won a silver medal in men’s trap at his fifth Olympiad and is thinking to go to Tokyo too.
Elisa di Francisca, silver in foil, who upheld the European flag against terrorism at her prize giving.
The reborn Settebello (bronze in men’s water polo) and the incredibly strong Ital Volley (silver), such a tight knitted team, with a few very strong players. I had lost touch with the volley team in these last years and I was so pleased to discover they are so strong once more. I’ve watch the semi-final and final matches and it was absolutely fantastic.
A mention goes to Federica Pellegrini too, who after her fourth place in the 400m free style (her favourite) thought about retiring so disappointed she was. And Rachele Bruni, who dedicated her silver medal in the 10km marathon to her girl friend and was criticize for her coming out.
But there would be so many other stories and athletes to mention.
And of course, let me mention other people who were inspiring in these Games, starting with the last performances (and what a brillint ones!) of Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt. The young talent of Simone Baile, who smashed me with her gymnastique astistique artistry. And Yusra Mardini from the Refugee Team who didn’t win any medal, but was at the Olympic Games after saving 20 people with her swimming skills while fleeing Syria.
It’s all about people, this is why I love the Games. I can’t wait for Tokyo!
But in the meanwhile, hey guys, following my post about Jesse Ownes and his friendship with Luz Long at the Nazi Germany Olympics, I’ll post about Jim Thorpe soon. I wanted to post yesterday but… well, it didn’t happen. But stay tuned!
And I want to say goodbye to the Games with one of the best commercials I’ve seen on tv these days. I know I’ve already posted one from Samsung. I don’t get anything from them, I swear, they just have super awesome content marketing team. And I love anything story, so…
It’s all about people.