In exactly 2 hours, the opening ceremony for the 2008 Olympics begins. Everyone is excited, but from what I’ve observed, I’d say the excitement level is lower than it was during World Cup in 2006. And China didn’t even participate in that.
The Olympics has brought an unbelievable headache to China. Everything is more difficult during this period, and most people are just waiting for it to pass – both locals and foreigners. Visa troubles, increased police presence, greater domestic surveillance infrastructure, land reposession, and international condemnation all spell the no-fun Olympics. Instead of Beijing being home to a proud and cheerful Olympic spirit, it more closely resembles a police state clenching like a fist while forcing a smile for the cameras.
Either way I’ll enjoy watching the events, and even more than that, the political atmosphere surrounding the games. I’ll post updates.