From the 4th to the 15th April, the 21st Commonwealth games were held on the Queensland Gold Coast, just 40 mins from where I live. With commitments for overseas travel over the next 2 months, I chose not to attend any of the events.
Not wanting to miss the atmosphere generated by the competition completely, I chose to take the recently completed, direct train and light rail link to the coast to enjoy the free 'Festival 2018’ events, held at both Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise.
On Monday afternoon of the 9th, Reg and Laurel, [neighbours] and I travelled to
Surfers Paradise, on a perfect Gold Coast evening. Visitors to the games must surely have been impressed. The temperature was balmy and the waves gently rolled in under an ever changing sunset sky.
A large screen had been set up for the entertainment of an evening and to broadcast events live during the day.
Magically for me, were the 10 musical sea saws erected on the beach. I was not alone in my enjoyment of this return of a childhood pastime, now modernised. One’s movement and rhythm activated the sea saw’s light and sound show.
The 'Giant Sing Along' grew crowds of young and old, singing karaoke.
I was sure a new star had been found when Laurel joined in.
We were unsure as to what this act was but found it quite comical.
The Holoscenes were mesmerising.
The imposing Commonwealth Star in its prime beachfront position.
As the sunset deepened, we made our way down Surfers Paradise's famous Cavil Mall towards the river, to view the 'Sea Urchins'. "Carefully crafted from hand-crocheted lace to mimic the striking and harmonious patterns found in nature. "
It was then time to begin retracing our steps, but we hit the rush hour for those commuting to the evening swimming events. So much laughter and friendship in the patiently waiting crowds. I had to take a deep breathe in for the doors to shut.
We paused briefly at Southport's Chinatown, where locals dined and relaxed watching the gymnastics on the big screen.
Reverse view - more dining and viewing with a full moon backdrop.
"The Museum of the Moon is an incredible seven-metre-wide, floating moon sculpture with detailed NASA imagery on its surface. Each centimetre equals 5 km of the lunar surface."
Wednesday 11th, the Hungry Hikers chose to enjoy the Broadbeach activities and then walk to Surfers to explore there. A very acceptable double up for me.
The Game's mascot, Borobi - the Yugembah language name for koala.
Our mounted police presence.
The entertainment at Broadbeach was family orientated.
A show of patriotism as we moved towards Surfers paradise.
Games bunting along the foreshore.
Return to the joy of the sea saws................
.............. and the beauty of the Sea Urchins.
........ with a reflection.
Busy but not crowded at 8pm.
We really didn't want to leave this 'paradise' of sand, surf and happy people on such a beautiful evening but all good things must come to an end and we joined the less busy queues for the light rail and our journey home.
The Games were a marvellous event for the Gold Coast. The organisers had received overwhelming praise for their organisation until the night of the closing ceremony. It was so disappointing, that the athletes who had done all the hard work, didn't get to participate and celebrate. Apparently, they had been brought into the stadium and seated before the ceremony commenced.
Tonight will see the first of our OS travel. Just so excited to be only 2 days away from our darling Grandson Ben and his Mum and Dad. They have recently moved back to Prince Edward Island, which is Kim's home state, so a long, but definitely worthwhile journey is ahead of us.
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