The last few days are one of the busiest that I had in the last years. There are so many emotions and experiences to be shared, so I will try to make some retrospective posts.
The first one is for our Bulgarian team. Stela Eneva won another silver medal and become the most successful athlete in London 2012 Games. I tried to meet her in the Olympic village and congratulate her personally – unfortunately without success. Our team is one of the smallest (only 8 people), I have not seen any representatives of the media or officials, so only the successes of Stela and Rado causes mentioning our small country Bulgaria. Anyway, we have to be very proud that our team won medals and performed so well and wish that we will have more representatives in Rio’2016 which will guarantee more popularity of Paralympic Movement and more proud for Bulgaria.
I visited two finals on Saturday – blind football and sitting volleyball. In Blind football the team of Brazil was so strong compared with the French opponents that it was almost a one field play. I already expressed my admiration about the blind football players who have such a great sense of their position, the other players, the size of the field and the doors. It’s a miracle how they can cross in a high speed the whole field without knowing what is in front of them. The two goals were scored in a similar way – the player with the the ball just overcomes (lie) all opposite team players who are positioned in a semi-circle around their door, turns sharply and shoots at the door with such a speed that the goalkeeper can not save the ball. Amazing!. You can imagine the glory of the Brazilian public shouting and screaming about their players. It was once again proven that Brazil is the “masters of football”.
The second final was sitting volleyball. The match was Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Iran. 3/4 of the public was Iranians – almost everyone with a flag, standing and shouting all the time. I was in the Paralympic Family seats (the official ones) and next to me some important Iranian quests were sitting. They asked me if I mind that they will fanatically support their team, I “gave” my permission and they started. It’s strange to see Muslim lady in the traditional dress shouting “Mashalla” after each point but for me it was really a fun. I chose to support Bosnia (although they didn’t allow me to enter their country some years ago:) and their team won the final. Being a big fan of volleyball, it was a little bit strange to watch the sitting version of this game. Anyway, it has almost all elements and roles of the standard one – attacks, digs, blocks. It’s was surprising to see the moments when the game is stopped and all players stand up – some of them on one leg, some of them on both.
The sitting volleyball is played in ExCel center – something like a big exhibition area (similar to the International Broadcasting Center building). I think that all arenas there are temporary ones – one part is separated with temporary walls, field is covered by special flooring and visitor tribunes are build for 3-4000 people. So, there are several sports played under one roof. This place was build and run by the Abu Dhabi fund. They also build a cable car connection between two of the London underground lines called Emirates 🙂 Some symbolic meaning in it, isn’t it:)