Olympics Gallery – Dr Anne’s Flame Burns Bright For Rio!

 In Dr Anne Small

From crying poolside for the women’s relay gold win to capturing the Olympic flame passing by on the streets at midnight, Dr Anne’s Olympic dream trip to Rio has gone swimmingly!
(Photo gallery at bottom of page)


There are policemen everywhere! Plus army personnel everywhere all carrying large machine guns! There are different types of police cars patrolling the streets with their red lights flashing and often sirens blaring. During the 40-minute taxi ride from the airport to the hotel on the Copacabana beachfront, there were police cars with flashing red lights every 1 to 2 kilometres. I’ve been told that Brazil is bankrupt and had to borrow a lot of money to pay their police who, for a while, hadn’t been paid for weeks.


I just hope it’s enough to stop any terror attacks during this evening’s Opening Ceremony.


Hanging out with my “nephew” Sebastion

Yesterday I was joined by my ‘nephew’ Sebastian and so we strolled along the beach front. The beach was full of small soccer and netball courts which were in use all day. So we just had to sit at one of the many open cafes/bars, sip champagne (as you do in Rio) eat chips and watch the action.

Then an unbelievable stroke of good fortune at midnight, when we stumbled out onto the street and straight into the Olympic torch procession. People had obviously been waiting hours but I managed to get a happy snap just at the second they ran past – accompanied by a full security detail of course!

Doing the Samba at the Opening Ceremony

Thoughts and feelings –

  1. The Brazilians are so proud of their country – they make more noise than Collingwood fans at a Grand Final. When their team marched out their noise was deafening … goose pimples on arms stuff.
  2. The songs that were played were so meaningful to the people – they sang along with every one.
  3. When the Samba dancers came out at the end, the whole crowd was up and dancing (myself included).
  4. The Olympic Flame is so Brazilan, flamboyant and beautiful.Dr_Anne_Small_Rio_Olympics_5178
  5. The Brazilian president gave such an impassioned speech – the people loved it.
  6. They did well telling the story of their land and acknowledging important people.
  7. I loved it more than the London Olympic opening ceremony – it had more passion and life. It was also done on one tenth of the budget.
  8. It’s a really lovely/warm fuzzy/sporting community feeling to see waring countries all marching together.
  9. We were all moved – appreciated the theme of World Peace, especially with the first ever Refugee team.
  10. The Brazilians obviously want to become important world leaders – ie, first ever South American team to host the Games, plus a large part of the ceremony was about global warming and its disasters. I’m not sure if the TV coverage also picked up on the fact that each athlete is to plant a seed and it will become the perpetual Olympic garden.


Dr_Anne_Small_Rio_Olympics_5435Screaming for our Aussie gold in the pool

What a day for the Aussies!!! We won a basketball game, beat Brazil in a women’s basketball game, Mack Howton won the men’s 400 m freestyle in a very exciting race, and the ‘piece de resistance’ was the women winning the 4x100m freestyle relay in world record time – well done Cate, Bronte, Emma, Brittany!!

There was a small group of Aussies in the ‘bleachers’, and we screamed ourselves hoarse – tears rolling down my cheeks. The people on our bus even congratulated Seb and I – it’s moments like this that make me so proud to be Australian – so I even dress with my green Afro wig, yellow Aussie top and Boxing Kangaroo flag.

Signing off with volleyball

Our group went to see Christ the Redeemer – Sebas said it was spectacular – but after 10 days of 5.30-6am starts and Rio game days ending at 1-2am, I slept instead. We will see two volleyball games tonight – no Aussie teams – then up at 4am for Ecuador and the Galapagos!

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