i Editor's Letter: Bring it on, Danny boy!


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The Independent Online


Serves me right for being so smug. As the crowds dispersed from Holland Park, near i Towers, I was admiring my photos of the Olympic torch bearer, while overhearing others, disappointed to have missed "the" shot. I couldn't see the flame in mine, but I was happy to have been there in the 80-degree summer sunshine, shrugging off cynics to revel in the shared camaraderie of a few moments of enjoyable nonsense.

It was only back at i that I was informed, with pointed glee, that my torchbearer was an advance decoy (in white tracksuit and golden torch). Perhaps someone could have told us, or even the police who happily ushered us away, leaving the real bearer to run through an emptying street. Like the Korean flags fiasco, it was straight out of Twenty Twelve.

But, who cares? All you anti-Games miserablists, please read Tom Sutcliffe and suspend the life-draining carping. They're here now. Surely, we all hope they will be a huge success. Who wouldn't want that?

It's odd. Some of our regular i correspondents have railed against the Games. Some of those same readers regularly bemoan the state of the nation and – in particular – the breakdown of our community spirit.

Well, more than 13 million Britons have lined up to see the torch go through their neighbourhood, three million in London alone. All of us stood with a sense of communal excitement, jabbering to strangers. We left with a smile on our faces and photos we will treasure for the rest of our lives. Some of them might even contain the actual torch! So, bring it on, Danny boy. Make us proud!