Tuesday, 22 May 2012

The Olympic Torch

Despite living in a very small town on the Somerset coast, I know four of the five or six people from Burnham who are torch bearers for the Olympic relay. Not bad considering that there are only a total of 8,000 people bearing said torch.  When I say, "Know", it is a bit of a stretch to be honest, but one went to my wife's school, one works in the supermarket down the road and is a familiar sight in his running gear around here, one I sat and spoke with at a Harvest Supper last year and one is better known to me as a friend who lives around the corner.  I guess he is the one who I would accept a friendship request from on Facebook, which, face it, is the gold standard for these things. 

You might be well acquainted with the fact that some from Burnham-on-Sea are torch bearers as Sarah Milner Simonds put her's up on eBay before she ran her leg.  She is a community gardener living here but working in London and she figured rather than sit looking at the torch at home she could flog it and the money would go to her community project instead.  Trouble is that she didn't mention it was for this purpose and she has had some stick for it.  When the winning bid was £153,100, it seemed pretty clear that people have been messing her around.  Surprise, surprise, she's still waiting for the money.  There are plenty of fall back bids, some of them must be genuine.  It will be interesting to see what she does get for it. 

Interestingly, the live coverage of the relay online provided by the BBC blacked out for her leg of the journey yesterday, conveniently reappearing as she handed it on.  Expecting trouble?  Quite possibly.  I hope there was none. 

On a brighter note (and now that summer seems to be here, it is a much brighter note!) I went to the beautiful city of Wells this morning to see the torch pass through, across the Cathedral Green and back.  A very worthy man looked a little overwhelmed as he was escorted through the crowds with the torch, given that he was running on a pathway and surrounded on all sides, I'm not surprised that he looked a little in shock.  It was a great day though and with the warm sunshine and swarms of excited school children - off school for the day - mixing with everyone else it was a good place to be this morning.

Star that he is, my friend dropped in this evening so that I could photograph the torch, which means the one at the top is mine as well.  My favourite parishioner and the kids were delighted to be photographed with it too. 

It's not for sale.

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