Welcome to a special Saturday edition of the Princess blog.
It was night filled with spectacular lighting and breathtaking visuals. We gasped when the snowboarder exploded from the Olympic rings.
And adored the bear.
It was also a night marked by sadness.
The Georgian delegation had eight athletes competing in the games as of Friday morning.
The group was only seven strong last night, and a world away a family mourns.
The sense of loss was clearly shared.
And marked in several ways at the Opening Ceremony.
Perhaps the parade of nations was not as exuberant as in previous years, but the evening still held excitement and joy for many.
Some nations send large delegations, like Britain.
While others are not so big, like South Africa.
The oldest athlete led Mexico’s delegation, 51-year-old Hubertus Von Hohenlohe.
Bermuda’s shorts surprised…
And we loved the pants worn by the Czech Republic.
A crowd favorite: Jamaica’s Errol Kerr.
The American delegation was welcomed warmly by our Canadian neighbors.
Team USA was led by Mark Grimmette.
Mr. Grimmette is participating in his fifth Olympics, a jaw-dropping accomplishment.
“A huge roar from the crowd came as the United States delegation walked in, looking dapper in red jackets and white pants from Ralph Lauren. Mark Grimmette, a luge athlete, is waving the American flag as he leads the group. — Juliet Macur”
“But this year, the march was a little more decorous, if still joyful — although a few still snapped some souvenir shots…. American officials have worked in recent years to instill in the athletes a sense of dignity of the moment. — Katie Thomas”
Snowboarder Shaun White reveled in the moment.
As did fellow snowboarder Kelly Clarkson.
The Polo Ralph Lauren uniforms looked good.
Right down to the boots.
For those interested in the Team USA opening ceremony uniforms, a reminder that most of the components are available for purchase at the Polo Ralph Lauren site, in Women’s, Men’s, Girl’s and Boy’s sizing.
Fair warning: it appears one of the most popular items may be sold out.
The Fair Isle Knit Hat is no longer on the PRL website but everything else seems to be available. If interested in purchasing what our athletes will wear in the closing ceremonies, sooner might be better than later. Below, the Shawl Collar Cardigan.
As tradition dictates, the last team into the stadium is the Host nation.
The Canadian team was a sea of red, greeted with an enormous ovation. Their uniforms are created by the Hudson’s Bay Company.
Waiting to enter the arena.
Growing up across the river from Canada afforded us the luxury of visiting regularly; multiple excursions later in life to Toronto, Montreal and other parts of the country have sown a deep respect and affection for our neighbors to the north.
Last night only enhanced these perceptions.
Seeing #99 with the torch was splendid.
And that little mechanical crisis hiccup detracted not at all from the evening.
From beginning to end…
It was a night to remember.