Saturday, June 25, 2011

Olympic Ramblings

Olympic Basketball place - pic taken from behind some bars - how apt!

There has been a lot of traffic jams, roadworks, road closures, bridge closure, bus route changes and not to mention dust in my area for the past couple of years. That's because I live in Stratford, London - that's right, where the Olympics will be held next year. I live just a few minutes away from the Olympic Park. Put it this way, I open my front door and look right, I can see the Olympic Village at the end of my road.

I remember when they first started the construction work on the site a few years back - Mr S would have to think many times before washing the car because just 1 day later, the car would be covered in a thick layer of yellow dust. And the dust would creep into our house too. Just a few hours after vacuuming and dusting, the floor would feel dusty, the dark mahogany of the piano would change into a murky lighter shade (okay, I'm exaggerating a bit here ;p) but truly, you could run your finger on the furniture just a few hours after wiping them with a damp cloth and already you would get some dust on your finger! (True Story!). Suffice to say, we had our share of hardships dealing with the huge construction project just a stone's throw away from our place. We suffered but we were also proud and excited to be so close to the action!

The Velodrome - so near yet so far!

The boys were excited about watching the swimming events and diving events live and I wanted to watch a few of the hockey matches (having played hockey at school) and badminton, hoping to catch Malaysia in action. Mr S was more interested to watch the athletic events and we didn't want to miss the opening ceremony, did we? So, when the tickets were opened for 'registration', we registered for around £1k+ worth of tickets - confident that we would at least get 'some' if not all. In case you didn't know, due to the expected high demand for tickets and in a bid to be 'fair' to all, all UK residents who wanted to attend the events needed to 'register' online for the tickets they wanted to buy and a scheduled ballot would then determine which tickets you would get to purchase.

If we were successful in the ballot, we would know by means of our money would be taken out from our account on the 31st May 2011. Mr S checked his account on that date and unfortunately for us, no money was deducted - which means we didn't get any tickets at all, NOT EVEN ONE!! The result was baffling for many people and left many disappointed. For us though, it was doubly so, knowing that we live so near the Olympic Park, (after all we had to go through during its construction!) and reading in the papers that some people got ALL the tickets they registered for (for several events!) when many others like us, got none at all! There's definitely something very unfair about that 'fair' ballot system!

It looks like we'll be watching the Olympic events from a TV screen after all. Maybe we should go back to Malaysia during the Olympics and watch from a TV screen in Seremban or Melaka. After all, a TV screen is a TV screen, no matter where you are it would be the same.

Damn that ballot system...

Or, wait, wait! Maybe I should just boycott the Olympics next year completely and just, no, no..I should do my own 'Olympic race' instead! The events would coincide with our holy month, right? So why not I race my grandma/my mom who always khatam the Quran twice during Ramadhan? Come to think of it, what a great idea!

And totally impossible to achieve.

Sigh. Anyway, one more Ramadhan to go before that one. Here's hoping that I'll be getting a medal for that race this coming Ramadhan, huh?

Amin, InshaAllah.


Along said...

OMG, talk about dissapointing!! I would have been livid. Sounds like the ballot scheme has "holes" in it..maybe someone's making side money off the tickets? I would have thought they would have prioritized the patrons nearby, seeing how you guys suffered through the construction period.

Anyhow, hope you have fun watching the Olympics anywhere. And also, welcome back to the blogging world!!

Halwafy said...

A large amount of the tickets apparently are sold to businesses and companies, Along :( Too bad huh? Ah well...

Btw, thanks for your comment! It's been a loooong time since I've received any!