The Olympic Torch started its long and amazing journey from Olympia, Greece to Beijing, China. This symbolic flame will travel over 85,000 miles in 130 days. Not only will this flame travel this amazing distance, but it will also land on five continents. After a little research on the internet about this amazing journey, I learned that the Olympic torch is traditionally lit in Olympia and then travels to the host site. Once arriving at the host site it then travels around the world returning to the host city in time for the opening ceremonies. When the Olympics were hosted in Australia the flame traveled underwater near the Great Barrier Reef. This year the flame is going to attempt to travel to the highest point on Earth, Mt. Everest It truly awes me the dedication our world puts into this symbolic journey, and I wish that it was coming in my neck of the woods so that I could see it.
In the summer of 2005 I traveled to Beijing, China on a Fulbright scholarship for teachers who live in rural areas. Nine teachers from the surrounding schools traveling through China for almost thirty days. It was an amazing experience. While in Beijing we got visited Tienanmen Square and the Forbidden City on a very rainy day. Even three years before the Olympic games Beijing was getting ready for its weeks hosting the world. They were refinishing sections of the Forbidden City, translating the city's signs into English, and building countless new buildings. Although China is not know for its environmentally friendly ways, all of the buildings being built for the Olympic games are on the cutting edge of "green" building. While in Tienanmen Square I got to see the famous count-down clock until the summer games.
I can only hope that these Olympic games can bring the region around China together, as well as the world together, at least for the duration of the games. The torch is the symbolic symbol that has always represented the Olympics. Maybe during the next Olympic games I will get to see this well traveled piece of fire.