TheLawyer.com’s Beijing 2008 blog covers the games from the lawyer’s perspective, with posts from lawyers and other legal professionals in the city on the Olympic events, the gossip, the law firms and the atmosphere.
The blog begans with a surprisingly clean post from Beijing-based legal recruiter Rob Metcalf on, er, the women’s volleyball and how to chant ‘Go Beer!” in Mandarin, while Christoph Hezel of Taylor Wessing followed with news of a new area of control for the people’s party.
To send us your own Olympic blog or photo, email me: Jon Parker, web editor
‘Go Beer!’, Rob Metcalf
Monday 11th August, 3pm
After years of preparation, the Olympic Games’ opening ceremony on Friday evening was accompanied by a sigh of relief that we can all finally get on with it.
Because if you’re one of the lucky people living in Beijing in the last few years, the games had become the event that just never seemed to arrive.
Decisions about personal life, living arrangements, career or
business have been on-hold to see what happens once the Olympics were over.
Even flights into Beijing were banned for the big day to ensure nothing could mess it up.
And if there’s anything the government is concerned with, it’s ensuring things go well – loss of face is its ultimate nightmare.
But now we’re up and running, as it were, and we can stop fretting about the opening ceremony being rained off or the smog forcing athletes to compete wearing facemasks.
And while it seems to have got off to a good start for most people, it was less good for me, as the first event I got to see was all but rained off. But in some people’s view that was probably divine justice. As that event was, after all, women’s beach volleyball.
It all started well enough, with me and my buddy with free-flowing Yanjing beer, beach girls keeping us entertained between sets and a noisy, good-humoured crowd chanting ‘Jia You! Zhong Guo!’ (Go China!).
We even bonded with our fellow spectators by changing the chant to ‘Jia You! Pi Jiu!’ (Go beer!).
But as the rain got worse and the wind picked up, it was clear we had to make a dash for it – a dash mercifully made easier by my friend calling his driver to come and get us.
Yes, I know just how that sounds. But keep in mind this is China, not Crouch End.
And having been rescued, we found a safe place to watch the US v China basketball game, which was a pretty quiet affair as the home supporters were disabused of their belief that China might have a chance at winning.
There’s still a lot more events to go though; plenty of time for China to get its revenge on the US. Let the games, er, continue.
Rob Metcalf is the Managing Partner of Metcalf & Q, a legal search firm
based in Beijing.