An early start is never a good thing after a long night of partying. My hearing is still recovering, my head is still fuzzy and my tummy has been cursing me most of the day. But it was all as a result of my own self indulgence, so while I do feel rough, I am so glad I do.
Does that make any sense at all?
Heck, I don't know who managed to see what, last night was just amazingly chaotic, but in a hugely good way. From 4pm when I got there, the Olympic Park was buzzing. The London Olympic Committee have all along said that they want these games to be remembered as the friendly games, and if yesterday was anything to go by, the people of the UK should be proud to welcome the world to London.
From the second you entered the stadium, there was a buzz. An energy. A sense of humanity. Everyone was smiling. Everyone was happy. Everyone was excited. It was electrifying. I have been to a number of special gigs through my time here in the UK, some of them for great causes like the Tsunami Relief Cardiff in 2005, others world recognised events like Glastonbury, and while each of these were special, dynamic and left an indelible impression on my psyche nothing can compare with the atmosphere and excitement of the London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony.
Is this my endorsement of the British welcome to the games. Heck yes. China stand aside. Did we compare. Of course we did. There was no military precision or impressive human formations, but we used technology and lighting to produce an extraordinary spectacular. Apparently up to 4 billion people watched a walk through British cultural history, as a blend of celebration, symbolism and respect gave the world a sense of life in the UK.
The colours and variety of sensory images throughout the stadium could only lead to sensory overload last night. There was so much going on. That stadium is stunning, and when it is lit in blues and whites and reds, words fail to adequately express the experience. At times, the stands were just a blaze of camera flashes, at other times the strobe effect made everything appear to move in jerked slow motion.
For me the biggest success of last night was the overwhelming sense of inclusion, especially of the next generation. From kids in pyjamas celebrating the NHS to giving the honour of lighting the Olympic flame to a group of young athletes, what games has ever presented its legacy to inspire a generation of new sports men and woman in a more fitting way? (and OMG what a stunning Olympic flame it was)
I can only imagine what it would be like to view it from the point of view of the many camera's that captured the event. I've yet to see a repeat, but got to see some of it on the huge screens that grace the stadium roof. I don't profess to be any expert, but in terms of how it made me feel, yesterday was a stunning success for the British Olympic Organising Committee, and a fantastic celebration of everything British.
My only disappointment? Paul McCartney's performance of Hey Jude. But I won't complain too much. For me, it is back to the pool later tonight to watch more of the swimming. It has been everything I expected and so much more. I could go on talking about it for ages, but I think I have enthused enough. The buildings have been dressed in fine fashion. The staff and volunteers are polite, knowledgeable and prompt. There is no ominous sense of a military presence, even though they are visible. Credit where credit is due, this is The Friendly Games.
I'll write more as and when I can. Miss you all, hell I wish I could have celebrated last night with some of you rather than a few work colleagues, but this is life. Take care. Thank you so much for your messages both private and on my wall. Love you all lots.
Song for today - We Can Be Heroes by the X Factor Finalists.