I’m sitting here on our settee with a hot brew, watching the Olympic swimming from Rio. I’ve always loved watching the Olympics.
My earliest Olympic memory was of the 1984 games in Los Angeles. I was ten and we were on a family holiday in Plymouth, staying with family friends. I remember my Dad and our friend’s Dad staying up really late watching it on the tv. We would get up early to have our breakfast in front of the tv watching the highlights show.
Our home growing up always had sport on the tv. Grandstand every Saturday, football whenever it was on, snooker, tennis, cricket, Ski Sunday, whatever was on really. All the big events were noteworthy in our house. The Olympics, the Commonwealth Games, the Winter Olympics, the FA Cup final (when it used to be an all day programmes event!), the football World Cup, the Euros. Cricket, football, golf, swimming, athletics. We watched them all.
We were spoilt as kids, living in the city with all the sporting opportunities available to us. Sports camps, like the Bobby Charlton Sports Schools in the summer holidays, which offered us the chance to try a whole range of sports. As kids and teens we played school sports, plus swimming and club hockey. We had season tickets for Manchester City football during the winter and for Lancashire Cricket during the summer. We watched the Manchester Giants basketball for a few seasons.
Mr Six and I got married in 2000: the summer of the Sydney Olympics. That summer we house sat for friends as our holiday. Mr Six and I hadn’t known each other when the 1996 Atlanta Olympics took place. Bless Mr Six. He was a bit shellshocked at how much Olympics we ‘enjoyed’ during our holiday! We laugh about it now, but he couldn’t understand why anyone would watch the heats or the less popular sports. Or even just watch so much sport!
For the London 2012 Olympics, we had pretty much wall to wall sports on tv. We had just deregistered our girls from school in order to home educate and we spent an awesome summer watching sport, learning about sports, the Olympic movement, London, going swimming and soaking up the Olympic vibe.
We went to see the Olympic torch relay twice in our local area: we watched a friend carry it for one stretch, then saw it again later that day as it passed the end of our road. The kids loved it! We also went to watch Olympic football at a nearby Premiership stadium. It was a wonderful summer of sport.
This year so far we are loving the swimming. All of our girls love to swim and our big two are just dipping their toes into competitive swimming for the first time. The girls also enjoy the gymnastics. I love the cycling.
And I can’t wait for the Paralympics! Woohoo!