The Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games had “OH CANADA” written all over it. The color of the olympic flag might be white with different coloured rings on them, but the true colours of these olympics were red, white and a red maple leaf!
We as Canadian set out to own the podium by trying to win the highest total number of medals in these games. That did not happen, however we did win the most number of Gold medals, not only in these games, but in any winter olympic games in history. Canada was all red, white and gold.
I was not born here in Canada; I was nationalized. I got my Canadian citizenship few years ago, but 2010 is the year I truly became Canadian. I always felt a bit of lack, and somewhat at unease knowing that us Canadians although were proud to be Canadians, had a silent pride and were not as outwardly as we truly should be. But from the moment the torch relay across the country began, I started seeing a different part of Canada, a part that I had not seen in close to a decade that I have been here. The momentum grew as the torch went from east to west, from south to north. I went to see the torch arrive in Toronto. It was a proud moment for me. Suddenly people were not just from different backgrounds, they were all Torontonians; they were all Canadians.
But just before the games began, 21-year-old Nodar Kumaritashvili died after losing control of his sled on the final turn at Whistler mountain in his qualifying run. Could that tragedy have been avoided? Maybe. It is sad and nothing really can replace that. But over the course of the 2010 olympics, the games itself did turn out to be a celebration.
So what were my most memorable moments of the Vancouver 2010 winter olympic games?
- From the opening ceremony, the whales.
- From the opening ceremony, Shane Koyczan’s poem, “We Are More”
- The first medal for Canada was not a gold but a silver by Jenn Heil and in her words “Of course, I wanted gold but I won silver”. Yes she didn’t loose the gold, but she wont the silver.”
- First Gold medal ever for Canada on home soil – This was the true defining moment and this was what being Canadian is all about. When the last competitor finished his run, and points were award, Alexandre Bilodeau knew he had won Gold, and he started celebrating, but then in an instant paused, to congratulate the last competitor to ski down the slopes for his run, by patting him on the shoulder and then went out to celebrate his victory. And little did he know that he had just predicted the outcome of these Games by saying, “”It’s just the beginning, I think”.
- Joannie Rochette’s courageous first figure skate after her mother passed aware during the Olympic games.
- Canada’s dominance over Russia in quarter finals of men’s ice hockey with a 7-3 victory.
- Women’s curling final between Canada and Sweden. Canada deserved to win, leading by 2 points in the later half of the game. Sweden drew in the last round, and then won over Canada in sudden death. But whatever the result, these Canadian women are champions.
- The equalizer by team USA in men’s hockey final between Canada and USA with only 24 seconds remaining.
- And finally the golden goal by Sidney Crosby in over time taking the men’s hockey team to victory. This one golden goal had 3 golden moments in it. First is the gold medal in men’s hockey declaring to the world that Hockey truly is Canada’s game. Second, making that one goal resulting in the breaking of the record for the most gold medals won by any country at any single winter olympic games. And third, is the coast to coast celebration in that one moment where people just stood up, jumped around, screamed with joy and more, and as it is said, the rest is history.