August 18, 2016

Confessions of an Olympics junkie...

Every two years alternating 'twixt summer and winter Olympiads I am totally hooked.  Glued to the television and the myriad of channels covering Olympic sports ranging from the usual suspects, to the "no way THAT is an Olympic sport!".  And in the case of Rio?  I've succumbed to modern technology and found a new additional fix for my obsession...Internet streaming.   Yep, Olympic coverage verging on 24/7. And yes, I feel vastly superior to those not watching Rio, but out meandering the streets searching for the elusive Pokemon.  Just don't tell me that will be one of those new Olympic sports added for Tokyo in 2020.

I have never had the honor of attending an Olympic Game as a spectator.  But I have had the pleasure of visiting Olympic sights in Lake Placid, Athens, Barcelona, and most recently...Squaw Valley, California.  The history of the athletes, and their stories, that walked the same soil (or snow) moves me like few other places.

So.  Many.  Emotions.

"Olympic Flame"
Squaw Valley, California

"Home of the 1960 Winter Olympics"
Squaw Valley, California

"The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning, but taking part;
the essential thing in life is not conquering, but fighting well."

-Pierre de Coubertin, founder Olympic International Committee

(transport to the winter Olympic venues)
Squaw Valley, California

"We Have Arrived"
Squaw Valley, California

"The Olympics are a beautiful metaphor for world cooperation,
the kind of international competition that's wholesome and healthy,
an interplay between countries that represents the best in us all."

-John Williams

Pride.  Spirit.  Unity.  Dedication and sacrifice.  A multitude of stories illustrating commitment and hard work.  The universe works in strange ways, but always with a purpose.  I do not find it ironic at all that the world needs a reminder of these virtues every few years.  Maybe even more so this year. It's just what the world needs, and at the exact right time.  A timely memo.  A not so gentle nudge to be the best you can be.

"Olympic Rings"
Squaw Valley, California
(Lake Tahoe in the background)

"Olympic gold medals aren't really made of gold.
They are made of sweat, determination, 
and a lot of a hard-to-find alloy called guts."

-Dan Gable, Olympic wrestler

"It is the inspiration of the Olympic Games that drives people not only to compete but to improve,
and to bring lasting spiritual and moral benefits to the athletes
and inspiration to those lucky enough to witness the athletic dedication.

-Herb Elliott, Olympic mid-distance runner

"Most other competitions are individual achievements,
but the Olympic Games is something that belongs to everybody."

-Scott Hamilton, Olympic figure skater

Maybe someday I will be lucky enough to witness Olympic athletic dedication in person.  Honestly, I don't know how I would actually be able to handle it tho. The level of stress, anxiety and nerves I experience watching from my couch while chowing down on a pint of Ben & Jerry's boggles my mind...AND my scale.

Squaw Valley, California

"The Olympics remain the most compelling search for excellence that exists in sport,
and maybe in life itself."

-Dawn Fraser, Olympic swimmer

The Olympic Games are sometimes the only exposure we have to certain countries.  They show the human side of nations that we may be unfamiliar with.  OR, they show an all too familiar side of a nation that we had a very different preconception of.  When the only "sport" many of us excel at is sitting on our sofas, watching television, and passing judgment via social media...perhaps partaking, even virtually, the quest for excellence can change the world.  Even if only for a few weeks.

My name is Kathy, and I am an Olympics junkie.  And for a few weeks, the world is a better place.

That's.  My.  Confession.

Here's where I "link up" today


  1. Gorgeous images! I have been glued to the Olympics a little bit to much. I said I was going to turn the TV and have them as background while I do other "more important" stuff. Then, I end up devoting my entire attention to them. Not sure why they are so addictive!

  2. Kathy,
    Your pictures are so beautiful. And I love the commentary for I too, am an Olympics junkie! I found an app on my smart TV that allowed me to choose all the sports I wanted to record. It found them all on whatever channel they are showing, at all hours of the day or night, and recorded them for me. It saved me a lot of stress trying to find and record what I wanted to see. I promise if the Olympics come to California - specifically Los Angeles - I will arrange tickets for us to go.

  3. Squaw Valley is breath taking, incredible shots. I wonder what Dawn Fraser would think of those fools vandalizing a gas station and lying about it.

  4. Kathy, Good to see Squaw Valley in summer. Most of the texture of the surroundings must be covered in snow in winter. Thanks for sharing your Olympic spirit. Sylvia D.

    1. I'm sure it is beautiful in the winter blanketed in snow. BUT...I prefer seeing it in warmer times! haha.

  5. Firstly I love your photos of Squaw Valley - it looks like something out of a movie set ... fabulous.
    I love the Olympics - we've been glued to everything from running to athletics, diving to boxing and even Table Tennis, Badminton and Tae Kwando!! And not forgetting of course the Cycling - I eventually made sense of it! It's a great time of the year for vegging out and watching other people being brilliant and inspirational. I've also been struck this time by how much of a family event it is - it's not just the athletes who put in the hours but their families too. And I find myself envying those lucky kids who have every member of their family over there with them. Well done to them all.
    Fil @ Fil’s Place - Old songs and Memories

  6. I'm with you! During the olympics I become a total coach potato, hopping from channel to channel, trying to watch as much as I can. The olympics are also about stories, effort and emotions. It's just the best thing ever!
    Beautiful pictures you posted! As always!

  7. I am an Olympics junkie and a lover of California native plants, so your photos resonated with me on both levels.

  8. I am so into Olympics as well. One of the few times when the world is at peace with each other. #photofriday

  9. I am glued to the Olympics as well. I love your pictures during this season without snow, adds a beauty to them I can't quite explain! Lovely.

  10. I am so into them!!! I have friends who have competed IN them (including this year) and have been to the Montreal site. One day I really want to see Lake Placid!

  11. Amazing photos, it's so good that they still honour the games

    Thank you for linking up

  12. I love the Winter Olympics best - but I can say I've been catching a fair bit of the Rio action. Sad it's over!

  13. I can remember watching Olympic games when I was a young girl - it was THE thing. What a great privilege to get to visit so many sites that have hosted this moment in time when we all just try to get along. And don't get me started about watching - I constantly yell at the TV. I'm sure the relay gold metals were because of my yelling t"he person behind you has a club, maybe a stick, okay, it's a baton, but run".

  14. Wow the scenery from those cable cars is amazing, but you would not get me up in them I have to say.No more than I would sit on the edge overlooking the view. Love your cropped picture of the rings. #MySundayPhoto

  15. I have visited Squaw Valley and enjoyed your photos.

    My husband and son went to an Olympic baseball game during the 1984 Olympics. We live just a 15 minute drive away from some of the water sports events during those Olympics, but we didn't want to fight the crowds.

    Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  16. So many fabulous images here and that barren landscape is beautiful


  17. Now I am totally rooting for you to see the Olympics in person one day.

  18. These shots are all amazing! Love the one of you and your daughter looking out over the "wide expanses".