It's been quite the week. Been working hard all week with little or no time to blog. Some colleagues came in as the week went on and we shifted hotels from the Sheraton to the Tibet, where we will stay, now, for the duration.
The highlights of this week have all revolved around the people. The young Chinese people that I have met have been absolutely outstanding. Beyond polite, outrageously helpful and seemingly delighted to have the world camping out in their back garden for a month. At times it's almost been overwhelming. On Thursday night two or three of us went for a walk along the fence on the outer perimeter fence of the Olympic park. Hundreds and hundreds of locals were out doing the same. We saw very few westerners. Just Chinese people looking at the sleeping spectacle that they knew, within 24hrs, would erupt into the international festival that is the Olympics. This girl was one of the hundreds snapping images of the scene.
Many of the people out there were carrying flags and sporting China gear everywhere
Everyone was happy to have their picture taken and many wanted to photograph us. This group plunked a Beijing sticker on my arm as they walked on.
Of course, last night, the games finally opened. I stepped out of the back door of the main press center to see President Bush's cavalcade scooting past towards the main National Stadium - the now famous Bird's Nest. I didn't have access to enter the Stadium for the ceremony itself but was totally happy to be outside with many of the performers for the ceremony - there were some outstanding costumes.
And then, of course, there were the fireworks. Lighting up the sky above the magnificent Birds Nest.
I pretty much limped back to the press center, after spending a full day working and six hours shooting out around the park.
A truly outstanding night.