Thursday, March 16, 2006
We were rather late to bed last night, because we stayed up to watch the Opening of the Commonwealth Games. Then we stayed up even later to watch the replay. We wanted to "arter on" our boy. That is a Norfolk dialect expression for "gazing on something or someone with pride and pleasure."
It is not every day you have a chance to watch a group of Norfolk Islanders march proudly into a huge stadium waving the Norfolk Island flag! We caught a couple of very brief glimpses of Peter, and he looked so excited to be there.
In a phone call this morning, he confirmed that for us. "It was an incredible buzz!" he said, and declared there was no way he was going to miss the Closing Ceremony, even though the Norfolk team is booked to depart the day before.
The Norfolk team was among the last few to come into the arena. Peter told us that all the teams awaited in the Rod Laver Arena, around a kilometre away, and left for the stadium in order. However, because everyone marched into the stadium a little faster than expected, everything sort of gathered momentum, and the last few teams found they actually had to sprint all the way to the M.C.G. Stadium so there would not be too long a gap...a bit hard on the older team members and officials!
Today Peter is delighted to be one of the two Norfolk Island team members chosen to lunch with the Queen! We suggested that if he has the opportunity, he should ask her if she remembers being shown around the penal settlement area of the island by his father 32 years ago!
Thank you to all those people who have said they will watch out for Peter at the Games. The Norfolkers are playing in the Squash Doubles, and do not have their first game until the 22nd March. It appears that they have drawn Scotland, New Zealand and Trinidad to play against!
Believe it or not, it took a bit of persuasion to get Peter to accept the invitation to train for the Games last October. He is certainly glad he did now!
The picture shows our boy at the airport on the morning of his departure.