Friday, August 3, 2012

Olympic Moments

We're now a week into the London Olympics, and I thought I'll share some of my most touching Olympic moments:

(1) After winning the 100M breaststroke, South Africa's Cameron Van Der Burgh was received at the winners' podium by none other than anti-Apartheid stalwart, Sam Ramsamy. There we had a South African of Indian descent -- who did so much in the fight against the racial-injustices of the Apartheid era -- awarding a swimming Gold Medal to a White South African. Not only that, but Cameron Van Der Burgh heartily sang along as Nkosi Sikelela iAfrika was played . It was a touching moment. Hendrik Werwoerd (the architect of Apartheid) must have been turning in his grave!

(2) As a Zimbabwean I was proud that our flag-bearer at the Opening-Ceremony was swimmer Kirsty Coventry. By herself, she has won more medals than the whole nation combined; actually she has won more Olympic-medals than the nation of India, with its 1.2Billion people! Not only that, she exemplifies the multi-racial, multi-cultural reality that is modern-day Zimbabwe. Some people watching the NBC coverage on tape-delay would have thought that Zimbabwe was a "White" country, and indeed, comments were made to that affect on Twitter. But no, having a White flag-bearer is not even an issue in Zimbabwe. We've left racial-strife behind us.

(3) I must say, the team event in Women's Gymnastics was out of this world. The last performance on the floor-exercise by US gymnast, Ali Raisman, was herculean! She nailed all her flips and somersaults, and then on the last flip, she landed on her feet and then immediately vaulted into the air again, breaking into an emotional smile whilst in mid-air! Words cannot describe her performance. This truly was an Olympic moment to savor!