Opening Ceremonies and Tickets

LIKE HOW WONDERFUL was that opening ceremony? About 75% of our staff to go to the opening. THey said it was absolutely amazing being there. Although it was wicked hot in the stadium because there is no venalation. If you looked closely at the athletes you could see where they were all dripping in sweat. Our staff said there were several people who were lying down on the sides of the street with heat exhaustion.

For those of us who stayed behind. myself being one of them because I had to get the after party set up…we did a pizza party in the ballroom where Coke is doing their hospitality. Not a bad place to be because we have it all decorated with different types of seating a million coolers (I should know as I am filling them) and several TV’s plus a big movie type screen to watch. So it was fun having the local staff as well as the Coke staff sitting altogether to watch. What was the coolest was seeing the absolute pride of the Chinese staff as they were watching what their country was producing in terms of the opening ceremony. The Coke guests who came back – and many of them have been to several Olympic openings said this was by far the best one ever. This 5 star hotel houses the restaurant Blu Lobster. Brian the chef/owner is one of the top chef’s in Beijing and probably one of the top 20 in all of China. He was born in Ireland – raised in the UK and now lives in Beijing – don’t ask me how that happened I am not going to have an intelligent answer on that. He came in to watch with us so it was very cool getting to talk to him..and receive an invitation to join his kitchen chef’s table one night. So don’t aske me if I saw opening as I have to honestly say not much. I was too busy taking advantage of spending time with Brian. Chef also is big buddies with all the large US named Chef’s and comes to the states a lot to participate in cooking event.

The sweetest thing is how excited our Chinese staff was the next day. About 50% of my local staff came running up to me to see if I watched the ceremonies if I liked them etc. Two of them told me with their Angle faces looking lovingly that they are very proud to be Chinese. It is all so humbling and sweet.

For me so far the most profound moment is Coke has a brand of water / gas and no gas that comes out of Germany. We got this imported for the games and it comes in glass bottles. My staff no sooner schlepped in 100 cases of GLASS BOTTLES got it distributed in the coolers when we got a call from Coke Shanghai that we had to pull it all. Why? Apparently the government has set up an extra import taxes during the Olympics and they weren’t paid on this water so we had to pull it /count it and schlepp it all back down to the loading dock. Apparently Coke along with several other companies never received the memo on this as we weren’t the only product getting pulled for this reason.

As I was in the midst of all of this pain in the butt work I glanced at the TV and they were doing the torch relay. The torch was being passed off to this very pretty Chinese woman…and when she was given the torch to do her run she look SO PROUD and then bought the torch down to her lips and kissed it and then held it up again with such pride..it made all the stupid bullshit with this German water go away.

Once the torch hit Beijing I heard they passed it off around 850 times to be honest I quit counting after 5. Seriously the person would run 50 meters stop WAVE TO THE CROWDS and do a passing off 1 minute ceremony and then run another 50 meters and repeat the process.

Ok this is my story for now and I am sticking to it.

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