where is it different?

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Does Beijing feel that much different now that the Games are on?

I mean, of course there’s a lot of stuff going on around the venues – and I envy everyone who has a ticket to the competitions – but what about the city itself, where is it different?

I’ve been wondering about this question.

Obviously, some things have changed around here – for instance, there are less cars clogging up the streets. Also, taxi drivers are dressed up nicely and even seem to be driving more carefully. Not to forget the whole place is plastered with “Beijing 2008” advertisements!

But does it really feel like a big international party everywhere? Is there really a spirit of brotherly love in the air? Are all people in the streets really radiating with joy?

I really don’t think so.

To me, it actually seems more like the whole city has suddenly advanced a few giant steps:

road in Beijing

It’s quite impressive.

But just where is the Olympic Spirit?

So many factors can either help it grow or further complicate things:

– sports,

– politics,

– the media,

– corporates,

But I didn’t even bother to look for anything special in those domains.

Instead I found it every day and everywhere:

restaurant workers watching the Olympics

There it was, the Olympic Spirit radiating between millions of TV sets and even more millions of eyes focused upon them.

A people inviting the world to play.



  • Alfredo

    I am not in Beijing now, but I was for most of July. What struck me back then were the children. Adults half believed – they would wear the T-shirts and read the newspaper articles about the Games, but they would also comment on how much money has been spent, and whether this was the best way to spend it. And some have definitely noticed that the Olympics were, in some cases, just an excuse to do other things that had nothing to do with it, like tearing down a few more hutongs. I think it is different for children. When I was a child, I did believe the Olympics were a big deal, and was excited they were about to happen (and God knows if my parents were cynical about it!) For Chinese children, it must be out of proportion, something they will remember for their entire life. So I hope it will be a positive memory.

    Reply

  • Hermann

    nu wird's doch politisch.

    Reply

  • Barry aka Ba Lli

    Ich hoffe nur dass Du bald Dein Visum hast und da endlich Leine ziehst.
    Die Wüste ruft, ich höre es bis Uetze.

    Reply

  • Anonymous

    Das ist jetzt nicht ernst gemeint, dass mit Eric Idle?

    Reply

  • Steven

    This is the giant show for the whole world ever in the Chinese history, but not for the people in Beijing…!

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  • Christoph

    Alfredo: Besides everything else, I like looking at all the little kids with their little 福娃-dolls too – and I also hope this will be a great experience for them!
    Hermann: Ich fand das jetzt gar nicht politisch.
    Barry aka Ba Lli: Bitte nicht dauernd die Forderung wiederholen, ich mache doch alles so gut ich kann.
    andy aka Anh Di 勇敢: Warum die Aufregung?
    Steven: I am not sure what you mean, but I think many people over here appreciate the feeling of being host to the world!

    Reply

  • Barry aka Ba Lli

    Nur ruhig Brauner, ist doch alles nicht so gemeint. Das ist eben der Haken beim Schreiben. Aber so ein bißchen frotzeln wird man ja wohl noch dürfen.

    Mir geht dieser ganze Olympia-Kram genau wie Hel Mann ziemlich am Steiß vorbei. Mich interessiert halt mehr die Gegend und die einfachen Leute und wie Du ihnen begegnest und sie siehst. Also das, was ich sonst nicht haben kann.
    Schön, dass wir drüber geschrieben haben und damit ist das Ding für mich gegessen und ich werde auch nicht mehr die Forderung äußern (Snief, dabei fand ich den Runing Gag gar nicht schlecht).

    Trotzdem, schöne Zeit in der Hauptstadt und viel Erfolg beim Visum.

    Reply

  • Florian (Flo Li Anh,

    Genau, und Ba Lli hat sich hier auch schon angekündigt,… wandern wir eben selbst.

    Reply

  • Anonymous

    "….aaaaand:::: Aaaaalways look on the bright si-ide of life! du-dumm-du-dum-du-dum-du-dum!"
    (KULT baby!)

    Reply

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