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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Tuesday Morning We Went to See Swimming Competition

Drew - me - Lulu - Robin at Swimming Pavilion this morning.

Keith bought a bunch of tickets before he came over from the States. This morning - Lulu - Drew - Robin - and I went to the Swimming Venue - a special new arena on the Olympic Park Campus  using Keith's tickets.

We started out from our apartment using the subway to St Pancras Station - then we caught the Javelin bullet train to Olympic Park. It was orderly and not crowded.

We entered the park thru security quickly - no wait - and went to the Swimming Pavilion. Seats are ranked A - B - C - D. "A" tickets are most expensive - about 200 pounds - our tickets were "D" tickets - 40 pounds. We had a pretty high climb to our seats - like the upper deck in a baseball stadium. There are no bathrooms or concessions up there - it was a way of saving on construction since the arena will be dismantled- no plumbing needed.

Our session was from about 10 AM to Noon. It was a preliminary session - no medals awarded there.

After that we had a nice dinner at an Italian Restaurant in the Olympic Mall - Westfield.

Then I left the party and went Downtown to buy some show tickets. I landed 4 front row tickets to "Chariots of Fire." It is a great play I saw before - and wanted them the kids to see it. We go at 7 PM tonight. I bought the 4th ticket in case Keith wanted to go. He is already out and about - so I will give it to another member of our party of 15.

Robin's Mom Charlotte watched the kids while we went to swimming this morning. Lulu will watch them tonight when we go to the play.

Two big issues I noticed here -

1. Tons of the good seats given to sponsors are going unused. Brits are angry because many of them have been turned away for tickets - and they see empty seats on TV. Nothing has been done to stop that.

2. The media did not show up. We are living in "media village" and we see the media buses going from here to Olympic Park virtually empty. Not only does this leave the media seats empty at the venues - but it also ties up the bus traffic lane. Normally cabs are allowed in the bus lane - not now - and the lane is wasted. This Olympics is set up for media - sponsors - and VIP. It seems the VIP are more interested in partying in the fancy hotels downtown than going to the events. Like many of the other customs in England - the leftovers are left for the commoners.

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