400 words #008: Olympic connections

I was doing so well! And then I missed a week. Because, life, and pandemic and stuff, y’know?

The lovely Kathy Hubbard left a comment on my last post reminding me that this time 8 years ago I was taking part in the Hansel of Film, which was part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

I’ve written before about participating in this project, which was “a UK wide relay of screenings of short films made by the public as part of the London 2012 Festival“.

Basically it comprised of a series of screenings of short films (made by – mostly – amateur film-makers) organised across the country, from Shetland to Southampton (and back) with ‘runners’ ferrying the films from one venue to the next (although as I soon discovered, I was the only idiot who actually ran).

At a time when live culture that involves people gathering together is at a low ebb it was wonderful to reminisce about this beautiful, simple idea and the small part I got to play in it. And also to feel sad that this sort of thing isn’t happening, in any real form, at the moment.

The memories, even 8 years on, still stand out.

Wonderful people, terrible weather, some brilliant films, and an overriding sense of being involved in something that was being made to happen by not much more than goodwill, its own internal momentum and sheer force of determination of those involved.

It was great fun.

I got involved simply because I was going through a ‘say yes to more things’ phase. Which is a, probably overdue, reminder to me that that attitude, an attitude of curiosity, open-heartedness and optimism, is where most of life’s best experiences come from.

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