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Day 1 of the Olympics

Discussion in 'Non Disney Trips and Travels' started by Dawn, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    It started early

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    Train was busy but everyone was in a good mood.

    Got to Waterloo station where all the police were eating ice creams.

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    Then walked down to here.

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    Found an olympic shot putt from the gods.

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    Then stood right underneath this.

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    We had a couple of hours to kill before heading to the arena and were worried we might just have to wander about but London came out in force and there was plenty of entertainment on The Embankment.

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    I wish I could describe the atmosphere. Everyone was just so happy.

    I did have to pay 50p for a wee but...

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  2. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    Found these outside the National Aquarium

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    Then it was lunchtime

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    Then a bit more of this happy stuff.

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    And then it was time to catch our connecting transport to the arena - this is how we roll!

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    We booked water taxi for £4 each way and if you get the chance it seriously is a civilised way of getting about. The ride took about 30 minutes and we saw all of this.

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    We were headed here.

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  3. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    Need to upload the rest of the photos now. :anxious:
     
  4. Wendy
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    Wendy A hui hou kakou makuakane Staff Member Administrator

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    Brilliant photos Dawn :)

    I love the Embankment and you can always count on Londoners to pull together, come out in force and put on a great show :yes:

    Love the toilet seats :lol:

    The water taxi is excellent, we've been on it a few times :yes:
     
  5. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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  6. Skywatcher
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    Skywatcher Chief Astronomer

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    Loving big Ben wenlock :lol:

    Did you get seats on the train ? Really hope we can with our little one
     
  7. Beccaberry
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    Beccaberry She's beccalicious! Forum Host

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    Great trippie so far!! LOVE the seat on the toilet! Hahaha! Steven looks to be having a big time.

    Isn't it funny, I've seen the bridge with the Olympic rings at least a dozen times already, but there is just something "cooler" about seeing a shot of it that a friend has taken. Just seems more real somehow...

    Can't wait for more!
     
  8. uscwest
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    uscwest Senior Cast Member

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    Terrific photos Dawn. Looking forward to the rest. I am envious.
     
  9. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    Well...

    When we got on the train at Lancing there were no seats as we were sharing a carriage with most of China. :unsure: We sat on the floor in a doorway which we are used to having taken public transport to busy football and rugby match. However at Haywards Heath our train was joined to another train and apparently there was plenty of seats in that one but we were quite happy where we were talking to the lady on her way to the tennis. :thumbsup:

    We changed trains at Clapham Junction and the connecting train to Waterloo had plenty of seats. This was a Saturday though. Expect weekday commuter trains to be rammed. :lol:
     
  10. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    OK so we're at the Dome/O2/North Greenwich Arena having arrived on a completely uncrammed very comfortable water taxi. First thing we see is this crazy way of crossing the Thames. :thud:

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    And if you look really carefully behind the crane you can see the Olympic Stadium in the distance.

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    Lots of people from lots of nations all mingling (and wondering how to get in :lol: )

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    And for the really reckless you can pay to walk over the dome.

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    We're in and going up the escalator as the crowds follow us.

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    Waiting for the doors to open.

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    And we're in.

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    The nice soldiers were allowed in too

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  11. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    And there was gymnastics. We were high up in the cheap seats and my zoom isn't that powerful so this is as good as it gets but it gives you a sense of what we saw. Sadly I failed to capture any of the face plants from the high bar, and there were several. :evil:

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    The long day was taking its toll.

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    Few more

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  12. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    All too soon it was over and time to start the long journey home. We caught our civilised water taxi back to Waterloo then on to some trains where we all compared notes with complete strangers about what we had seen that day. We were sat in a section with beach volleyball and archery. :thumbsup:

    We got home at 9.30pm and went straight to bed.

    So was it worth it? Totally yes worth every single penny of the considerable amount we spent to see 90 minutes of gymnastics. It wasn't just about the event, it was the whole day out. Amazing. I am a Londoner by birth and I'm very proud of my home city. The whole atmosphere was amazing from the second we stepped on the train. I couldn't believe how London had come out and welcomed everyone. I don't think I saw a single frown all day. The entertainers on the Embankment was brilliant, intriguing and sometimes hysterically funny. And seriously the water taxi is the way to get about if it's an option for your destination. With a games ticket it was £4 each way person - compares very well with underground fares and you get to go under Tower Bridge. :mental:

    Security was discreet but obvious at the same time if that makes sense. It's exactly the same as at any major airport, including me having to remove my belt. Our belongings and persons were screened by members of the British army who were lovely and friendly. Everywhere we went there was help if you needed it, people pointing you in the right direction (with big pink foam hands) and it was just smile after smile after smile. We mingled with people from so many countries I lost count. Big US contingent at the gymnastics who did their country proud. Also saw Russians, Australians, Canadians, Japanese, Italians, French, Poles, and a whole host of others all having a great time.

    We're going again on 10th August to see the men's volleyball semi-finals which is at a different venue so more photos from that.

    As Steven says - "we are now part of history."
     
  13. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Great pictures Dawn! :thumbsup:

    I'm really enjoying these. They're especially cool from my perspective being able to see bits of places I've only ever heard and read about. I gotta get to the UK one day!

    Tom :)macwave:... maybe I'll go to Wales and reclaim my peninsula!)
     
  14. Wendy
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    Wendy A hui hou kakou makuakane Staff Member Administrator

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    Looks like you had a good day, those crowds would have finished me :mental:

    Poor Steven looks absolutely shattered.
     
  15. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    Thanks to Chris for texting me updates on the cycling and swimming throughout the day.

    And thanks (I think) to Claire who texted me to say she could see me on TV and could I please sit up straight. :taunt:

    So....here's what it cost.

    tickets 3 x £40 each
    train fare for 3 = £57
    return water taxi for 3 = £24

    That's the base cost. There was also

    official programmes and merchandise = £40

    And then food and drink. I don't know how much we spent on that but it was a lot. We chose to do it this way and knew we'd pay Olympic prices for Olympic food but many people bought their own food which we will do on 10th August. One small gripe - you cannot take drinks into the venues for security reason - I accept that but I cannot accept the outrageous prices charged inside for drinks - made Disney look positively cheap. But we didn't let that bother us. The burritos in the O2 are lovely if you must buy food inside -my Olympic food tip for you. :D

    Also 50p for a wee in the union jack toilet and some loose change went on some of the entertainment on the Embankment.

    It was worth every single last penny that we spent. I'll remember it forever.

    Questions?
     
  16. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    He was fine, just taking a break between rotations. Was still bouncing off the walls on the train home. :eek:
     
  17. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    Love your photos and your descriptions of the events. We watched the gymnastics, and every time the camera cut to the audience, we looked for you. Never did see you though. I surely thought you'd have your "HELLO TINK" sign up over your heads, but nooooooo... :sigh:

    LOVE the "extras" of getting into London and through the area. The photos of Steven with historical places in the background are wonderful. That's my favorite part of "over there," the real and true history, the ancientness of your country...

    (Ummmm, you had to pay to errrmmmm pee)? :unsure:
     
  18. Dawn
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    Dawn carpe diem-ing Forum Host

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    It's a British tradition. :D
     
  19. Slowhand
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    Slowhand Cruise Director Forum Host

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    ....hence the phrase "I`m just going to spend a penny" :lol:
     
  20. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Oh Lord, there goes any hope I ever had of getting over to the UK. :sigh:

    If you've got to pay, it would cost me more for my DW to pee that it would for airline tickets. She's currently working on a book, "Great Bathrooms I Have Known". Look for it soon in your local bookseller. :rolleyes:

    Tom :)macwave:... course, I'm no bargain either in that department anymore.)
     

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