Monday, September 8, 2008

Beijing Rockstar

Another exciting day has come and gone here in Beijing. We had a great time today. We started the day by going to the Bird's Nest and watching Erik compete in his first race--the 400m. He looked really nervous to all us, but he keeps assuring us that he wasn't. Either way, he did a great job and advanced from the prelims to the semis which will be held tomorrow night.

It was really cool to see him down on the track. You know how Troy is, he was screaming at the top of his lungs so that Erik would hear him and hopefully calm his nerves a bit. The Chinese got a kick out of how loud he was. I told Troy that I wasn't sure if Erik could hear him or not since Erik didn't respond, but a Chinese man next to us assured us that the entire stadium could hear Troy yelling. He probably wasn't too far off.

Here is Erik on the big screen. It is so cool to see him larger than life. This one is for you Erik!

The Chinese people are AWESOME! They have really embraced the Paralympics and came out in full support. I have never seen anything like it in my entire life. The stadium was 3/4 full which in a stadium that seats 91,000 people that is incredible. Usually at a disabled sporting event you have a handful of people in the stands, even in Australia there were probably only 10,000 at a day of competition and we thought that that was a lot. It really made the events that much more special to have that many people watching and cheering. And talk about cheering whenever a Chinese athlete was competing. The roar of the crowd is exhilirating.

Here at the Paralympics if you are in a wheelchair you are a celebrity. So as we were sitting at the stadium talking after the events hundreds of Chinese people were waiting to take pictures with us. I guess we looked like official athletes sporting our wheelchairs and USA clothing. At one point we had at least 30 cameras in our faces and we definitely felt like ROCKSTARS. It was a pretty cool experience. People stop us constantly on the street to take pictures with them as well. We really can't go anywhere without getting stopped. I can see how celebrities get sick of getting stopped when they are going places. It is fun at first, but it would get old real fast.

This guy was my favorite though--Introducing...MR. BEIJING!

Here are a few more pictures that I got of the Bird's Nest today. I just can't tire of taking pictures it. It is spectacular. Tomorrow I am going to try and get some pictures at night so this will not be the end of these for sure.

Tomorrow morning we are going to do some sightseeing which I am excited for. We miss all of you back at home and think of you often, but we are having an amazing time!


Audycamp said...

that gives me the chills to read this and imagine being there. How awesome that you are there. An experience you'll never forget:)

Jerlyn said...

How exciting! Soak it all in, it will end all too soon!

Jerlyn said...

How exciting! Soak it all in, it will end all too soon!

Anonymous said...

Wow, what a neat experience! I have kind of a dumb question, is Eric the Eric that I met in Tucson or a different one? It's hard for me to tell from the pictures. Well have a great time, i can't wait to read more of your trip over the next few days! Take care

Cassie Simonton said...

Still sooo jealous!! How fun...tell Aunt Sunny "Hi" for us!!!
And by the way you guys R "RockStars"!!!! GO USA!!!!
Good Luck Eric!!!!