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Commitment needed to build on our Olympic successes
I am generally an optimist, a half full person.
I try to find the good in people and where none appears apparent I try to get inside that person to find out why. There normally is a why.
The London Olympics have really really buoyed me.
It's made me feel good about people, sporty or not, well known (now, anyway) or not.
The initial talk was of Team GB but I think it’s been Club GB with a membership of just under 60 million people. Hasn’t it felt like that to you?
Many participants have been interviewed. Their stories are varied in the challenges they have faced and overcome.
36-year-old rower Katherine Grainger, with three consecutive silvers going back to 2000.
Heptathlete Jessica Ennis missing Beijing in 2008 with her broken limb in plaster.
Long jump champion Greg Rutherford with 17 ham string injuries.
The African-born (in war-torn Somalia) Muslim with a cockney accent, Mohamed Farah (Farah, I’m told is Arabic for mirth, joy, happiness) winning Gold for Britain, draped in our Union Jack.
Andy Murray doing it, at last.
16 golds at the half way stage, a nation rejoicing in these victories, triumphs and vanquished demons confronted.
We are a multicultural island nation, perpetually punching above our weight.
Once the Workshop of the World, the lone defiance against Hitler’s Fascism, with ingenuity and invention in so many spheres; business, music, fashion, home of so many sports.
Because of our heritage, we are totally adaptive to change.
This must be the best feel-good factor time in a generation. But there have been no 'overnight successes'! Such a thing rarely exists or lasts.
Our Olympians' successes (and let’s hope there’s still more to come) are no 'flashes in pans'.
With blood, sweat and tears, could I add Arte et Labore, not just this fortnight, not just this month or year, but over hundreds of hours over many years.
The participants themselves, their mums and dads, families and friends, their employers, coaches, teachers and legions of medical, dietary and motivating professionals have invested time and money and many other resources to make these aspirations become achievements.
But we need more of it if we want to build upon these successes.
Money, yes . . . but more than that too, in bucket loads.
Is our Government, our councils, the voluntary sector, our schools, colleges, sports organisations up for this?
If you’ve felt good, what should you do? What should we do as a nation?