Before starting my note I’d like to say that I am at Rio-2016 as an accredited journalist.
The Olympic Games are officially launched. Everything seems wonderful in the other side of TV but few people know how many things remain behind the scenes.
The opening ceremony of the Games took place on August 5, at 20:00.
As the roads had to be closed we arrived at the area adjacent to the legendary “Maracana” stadium 5 hours earlier and walked to the place we needed. You can see almost nothing on the streets symbolizing the Olympic Games. We were walking to the stadium and when we were told that after 300 meters we would be in place we didn’t believed because we saw neither people nor closed streets. There weren’t event posters.
In my previous note I have already note that the volunteers service and the organization, in general, are on a quite low level. We were looking for the journalists’ entry almost for an hour even when we were being accompanied by our Portuguese speaking compatriot. We entered ‘’Maracana’’15 minutes before the start of the opening. The world’s largest 3rd stadium was packed. The opening ceremony was nice but our expectations were completely different. First, uncomfortable seats were allocated to photo journalists. We had to follow the cauldron lighting ceremony and the most part of the performance on the screens.
The national teams were entering the stadium and dividing into two parts one of which was going to the right and the other – to the left. We had good luck and our team came to our side. The opening ceremony lasted 4 hours and getting to the media center 3 hours. We had to wait for a bus or more precisely to our turn for about 1.5 hour. We reached ''home'' at dawn, slept 4-5 hours and went to highlight the first performances of our athletes.
Actually, it is very difficult to adapt to the new time zone, working rhythm and places. Everything is very far from each other and time-wasting. Today and yesterday we wasted 2 hours to find the entries of three structures and our work places. And again, these volunteers who don't know anything.
I have always wondered how journalists and photographers put aside their emotions and work non-stop and without distracting. Yes, you will say it's professionalism. In this case I still need an experience of long years because my emotions bother me.
During the gymnastics competition when I was concentrated on Harutyun Merdinyan's opponents, British gymnasts, I heard a strange noise, looking back I saw that a French athlete broke his leg during the vault.
I had never seen such a thing. And what do you think what I did? Did I take a photo? No, I began crying, of course, I'm not a professional. The athlete was broughtt out under applause. One of the judges even almost lost consciousness. By the way, Hakob Serobyan (the couch of the Armenian team who also works as a judge at Rio-2016) was one of the judges of the exercise. Perhaps after that scene the only thing that was on his mind was our athletes' performance without injuries.
Thank God, we had no injuries. Unfortunately, Artur Davtyan didn't overcome the qualification round but our optimistic and cheerful Davtyan definitely will not retreat. The bright spot of the day was Harutyun Merdinyan who placed 4th and qualified for the final.
Many people write me and ask about my impressions of Rio, but I don't answer anything because I haven't seen Rio yet:)
P.S. 1. When we returned the doors of our rooms were open. Probably, the cleaning staff had forgotten to close them and had left to the mercy of fate our ''property''.
P.S. 2. In Brazil people don't write football players' names on skirts to not offend anyone.
P.S. 3. I was convincing my Brazilian colleagues for 20 minutes that I am not Brazilian but I couldn't convince the photographs from Tashkent that I wasn't their compatriot::)
In anticipation of good new, Shushanik Hakobyan
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
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