Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Blue Earth

Rio feels very European, but as one kind local mentioned to me about her street stand, "We work when we want to, we're happier that way."  And yes, Brazilians are very happy, joyful people and have been quick to share that joy.  Especially since my only Olympic experience before this was in Russia, I am eternally grateful to be in a country where people smile.


Around town, and in the Olympic areas, there are still projects and construction.  That's not all that surprising, as most of the venues are temporary or easily assembled/disassembled venues that can be used over and over again.  It reminds me of the days before the county fair, all the rides and carnival equipment get rolled into town - obviously, this is just a bit larger than the county fair.

Temporary seats being erected for the Marathon
Historically speaking, Rio has been very innovative in keeping costs down.  The games at large will cost less than 1/5 of the smaller Winter games in Sochi!  The ceremony will "officially" cost only about 1% of what Sochi spent if you include Sochi's elaborate construction costs!  Perhaps that's more a reflection on Russia's handling of the games, but Rio's ceremony will cost less than the ones of recent.  Outside of some specific large projects, like the athletics stadium, most of the venues are temporary.  They look nice on the inside, and amazingly, are reusable venues that will be used by their athletic unions all over the world.  This aerial photo I found online, but have a closer picture below it, so you can see how simple it is.  By the way, I'm staying at the tallest building at the right of the picture.

The main stadium for Beach Volleyball at Copacabana Beach
Not the prettiest stadium, but it gets the job done!
The ceremony will be performed at Maracana.  And it has had it's own construction project.  A tent city was set up months ago for the ceremony.  Tents for costumes, changing, offices, practicing, and full football-field sized ones for choreography.  This allows for us to assign different performance groups to practice simultaneously instead of waiting for their time inside the stadium.  There has been a construction project going on inside the stadium, but I'll save that teaser for another post!

This is the main entrance to the stadium.  I usually am transported by car and enter in another location, so this was actually the first time I went to the front of the stadium since I took a bus.  There are many armored soldiers surrounding the stadium, and I have a great picture of one carrying a bazooka of all things!  Learning my lessons from the Russia, I will refrain from posting military photos until I know it's safe!


Today's teaser - hmmm...it's getting close to dress rehearsals!  We're soon going to have to give up the use of our phones now that we will begin full runs, so I have some great teasers saved up and ready to go.  We're not supposed to take pictures ourselves (selfies)/workers/actors - people in general - but somehow I got this one approved...

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