February 25, 2006


I’m tired, it’s almost over, and it is the time of the Games when everyone is both ecstatic at the prospect of going home, and yet sad to think that this enormous event of which we have all been a part is ending, yet again. 

There are lots of things that make the transition from an Olympic city back to your home city difficult.  A new place has become familiar to us here, as has spending a few minutes of each day wandering through it, discovering its secrets, and learning about its past.  A brief walk on a rare sunny day with a good friend on the River Po, for example, turns into a lesson about the Basilica di Superga, a baroque church that stands over 2,000 feet above the city.  While creating a beautiful silhouette, the church also marks the spot where, in 1949, a plane flying from Spain to Torino crashed with the city’s soccer team on board.  Thirty-one people died, including team captain Valentino Mazzola.

A quick stop at an outdoor café for a cappuccino or two brings with it a few new Olympic pins to add to the already-established vast collection.  A walk over to the Oval Lingotto includes a chance encounter with American Shani Davis, who – with medals around his neck – smiles at fans, agrees endlessly to pose for pictures, and graciously signs autographs.

But I think most of all, what will be missing when I land in New York will be the fans, the hordes of them that wander through these Olympic streets, wearing various parts of their national regalia so that it is known, without a doubt, who they are rooting for.  They joke with each other, scuffle playfully with fans of other teams, and rather than look odd, they are right in place, whether they are wearing the orange feather boas that are part of the unofficial team uniform of the Netherlands, or they are athletes in an official team jacket.  It is this that I will perhaps miss most:  sitting in a venue and just staring at the backs of these jackets, upon which the entire world seems to be represented.

Shani Davis warming up before his next event.

Crazy hockey fans!

H A V E  A  Q U E S T I O N  F O R  D R .  B A S S
D U R I N G  T H E  W I N T E R  G A M E S ?

C L I C K  H E R E
We will be posting the questions and answers
on the CNR At The Winter Games website!
m o r e

Be sure to check back often for Dr. Amy Bass's updates to her
Online CNR Winter Olympic Games Diary.

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