Hello from London! I arrived in the British capital with umbrella in hand after reading reports of record rainfall in the 2012 Olympic host city. But so far, sports fans, the weather has been on the sunny side. I’m staying in an area of east London known as Docklands, located on the northern end of the Thames peninsula called the Isle of Dogs. While I haven’t heard dogs barking at the University of East London campus, I have heard and seen planes taking off and landing at London City Airport across the Thames.
Time Out, the official publisher of travel and tourism guides for the London 2012 Olympics, describes Docklands as “for many years a chunk of barely populated tower blocks awaiting economic revival.” Olympic organizers are hoping the Games will provide an economic boost to the east London area, where the Olympic Park and Olympic Stadium are located.
Security is tight. I can’t enter the University of East London grounds without first getting my official credential scanned by a security guard. There are also various security checkpoints in and around the Olympic Park.
Two-time Olympic champion Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games, has said these will not be an “under siege” Games, but a celebration of the world’s greatest sporting event.
On that note, let the Games begin!