Friday, February 07, 2014

Friday 7th February 2014…at last a sunset!!!

Although the bed was hard had a good sleep but miss my tea and yogurt and cereal this morning but not complaining….I was out the door at 9am and did a huge beach walk I think at least 8 miles…

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The white X is where I am heading.

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This is with the panoramic setting on my camera and trying to show the whole bay it is very beautiful.

The smallest RV I have ever seen!!!!

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I did stop in the little town for a breakfast of French toast and fresh orange juice…it is very warm but I do notice the town is very quiet compared to other years.

I was back by noon and stopped by the room and dropped my things off and then grabbed the towel and hit the beach I had a really long swim the water is warm and rejuvenating…I then realized this is maybe my last ocean swim till I am on the Camino and swim in the ocean off the northern coast of Spain!!!

Came back and relaxed with my book for a while then went over to Paula and Jerry’s where I had a great haircut it is somewhat of a tradition now…thanks.

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  We then went to a lovely ocean front Bistro for dinner and the sunset views.

All these photos were taken from there it was a fabulous evening!!!

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Check out the new hair cut!!!

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p & J and I have been friends for three years now and it is always great to see them this time it has been twice in SMA and now here…safe travels for the rest of the winter!!!!

Well a small change in plans I am now leaving here tomorrow morning heading back to SMA about an 8 hour drive I think I have not done it before.

Carolyn asked me if I wanted to go to Laredo with her on Monday she has to cross the border to go to the embassy to get her visa and will be back on Wednesday..I said I would it will good to spend some time with her and also when we are in the USA I can buy my hiking boots this time cross trainers.

I have enjoyed my week at the beach seeing so many of my special friends and soaking up the rays and the swimming…..wish you all a great weekend .

Yashi Kochi!!

Sochi 2014: World watches Winter Olympics that are 'Putin's Games'

 

It is not lazy shorthand to call Sochi 2014 "Putin's Games".

The Russian president has been the driving force ever since the International Olympic Committee was persuaded that his vision for the Black Sea city could be made real.

Now - after so many years of concerns and questions - the big moment has arrived and Friday's opening ceremony will give us the first taste of what these Games will be like.

As we know from our own experience in London two years ago, the curtain raiser can set the tone for the rest of the event. In the run-up to the London Olympics there were a lot of jitters about security and tickets. There was a national sense of anxiety, which seemed to lift the moment Elgar's Nimrod began floating over the rolling green pastures of Danny Boyle's bizarre set.

Sochi 2014 by numbers

  • 30 - the cost in billions of staging Sochi 2014, more than all the previous 21 Winter Olympics combined
  • 40,000 - the distance in miles covered in the longest torch relay in Olympic history
  • 531 - the weight in grams of the gold medals, which are made up of 525 grams of silver and six grams of gold
  • 98 - the number of gold medals on offer across 15 disciplines
  • 2,900 - the number of athletes, from 85 countries, competing in Sochi

 

While it might be hard to match the Queen jumping out of a helicopter, we are being promised the Sochi opening ceremony an 18-part spectacular, which will last almost three hours and showcase Russia's rich depth of arts and culture. There will be no shortage of history either, with creative directors promising a celebration of the country's 'millennium of might' and a section on the Russian revolution.

There will be innovations too - with athletes marching into the £500m Fisht Stadium from a ramp built into the centre stage. In another break from Olympic tradition they will also enter in the order of the Russian alphabet. The hosts will still come in last.

Make no mistake - there is a lot riding on this for Russia and for its president. No expense has been spared and while London used humour as well as pyrotechnics at its opening ceremony, Friday's show is likely to be more in line with Beijing's awesome declaration of global power in 2008.

In total, 66 heads of state and world leaders will be in attendance, including Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon will also be there.

But the ceremony has been snubbed by US President Barack Obama, who is instead sending the former head of homeland security Janet Napolitano - seen by many as a statement against Russia's anti-'gay propaganda' laws.

 

The opening ceremony will take place in front of a sell-out 40,000 crowd in the Fisht Stadium

British Prime Minister David Cameron is also staying away but has sent Culture Secretary Maria Miller, who arrived early on Friday and spent part of the morning touring the BBC's broadcast centre in the Olympic Park.

Earlier this week the IOC president Thomas Bach criticised those leaders who had turned down the chance to come here, saying they were making an "ostentatious gesture" designed to attract international headlines.

But ultimately these Games won't be judged by the rest of the world on the quality of Friday's show or the number of world leaders who turn up. Organisers know there are many more hurdles to clear.

Questions of terrorism and security persist, while the first athlete to make any sort of political gesture - be it related to gay rights or any other cause - will be jumped on by an international media hungry for controversy.

 

My first impressions after three days here are that while Sochi is a bit rough around the edges, the organisation is on the whole deeply impressive. The venues are stunning and getting around has proved remarkably easy, despite the heavy presence of security guards and soldiers everywhere you look.

Yesterday's opening events up in the mountains seemed to go well enough (and looked stunning on TV) although there are still plenty of concerns about empty seats. The opening ceremony will no doubt be a sell-out of 40,000 but it will be interesting to see how the organisers cope if fans stay away in the coming days and questions start to be asked about a lack of atmosphere.

It was a problem for Moscow last summer during the athletics World Championships and is likely to be a problem here - but with so much at stake, one suspects the organisers will ensure any empty venues are quickly filled with volunteers.

The other big challenge for the Russians is to deliver a winning team. In Vancouver in 2010 they won just three gold medals and Putin has already piled the pressure on by saying the country expects them to deliver.

It is 34 years since Russia - in those days of course the Soviet Union - hosted the Olympic Games in Moscow without the Americans, who boycotted because of the host country's invasion of Afghanistan.

More than three decades on, so much has changed. With the eyes of the world turned to Sochi the challenge for the most expensive Olympics in history is to show people Russia has changed for the better.

2 comments:

living.boondockingmexico said...

Great pics! I guess I should give Jerry's hairstylist a try! Have fun.

mexicokid said...

she is a bit of a Missy but does a good cut..yes try her this summer cheers les

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