Alternates of the Canadian Synchronized Swimming Olympian team will be blogging about their experiences for HuffPost. Today's entry is by Geneviève Bélanger.
The Canadian Synchronized Swimming team will soon be in the spotlight. We have been together for four years, day after day, week after week, to work with such discipline, determination, team spirit and incredible chemistry. We understand each other. We are a great family: 12 sisters!
We have been away from Canada since mid-June. After a training camp of 360 hours in six weeks in a secret location in Spain, we are ready to compete against our rivals and all of those who will be in our way. We work with ardour and analyzed our routines very delicately. Be careful! Canada is coming!
On July 26,I had butterflies in my stomach. It was the great and long awaited departure for London 2012. It's so emotional to think that we achieved our dream: to go to the Olympic Games.
Since we were young, we all had the same dream. Once in London, the eight athletes that will swim at the Games are leaving us to go in the Athletes Village. As I am an alternate of the Canadian Team, I'm leaving for another location called the Performance Centre. This is a little bit of a sad moment as we are so close eachother. I'm very happy and proud to be part of this great family and part of the world elite. I had the chance to learn with the best team in the country. Each one is bringing something to the team.
On July 27, I woke up a 6:30 a.m. I couldn't sleep anymore thinking of the members of the team who were going to their first official training. I really wanted to be there, but as the security is pretty strict in London, I couldn't have access. After breakfast, I was getting ready to explore London. I was going to go to the London Bridge, as I really wanted to have a picture with the Olympic Rings. On-site, many people came to get a picture with me and an autograph. It's really great! I'm starting to live my Olympic experience. I'm meeting Canadian athletes from other sports, too.
From the bridge, I had the opportunity to see the Olympic Torch arriving on a boat. What a great moment! It was unbelievable. I had goosebumps. Then I continued to explore the city by going to other sports venues. In the evening, there was a reception at the Performance Centre. Everybody there who wasn't allowed to go to the Opening Ceremonies was there. We were all looking at the TV screens. What a show! My favourite moment was Mr. Bean. The most magical? When they lit the Olympic Torch. But the best moment cannot be anything else than when the Canadian Team came into the Olympic Stadium. When I saw my team in the parade, I jumped in the air. I was as excited as the girls. All the room sang O Canada!
Once the ceremonies were over I went to bed, as the next morning we were leaving outside the city to focus on our performance. On July 28, I met up with the team again at the train station. I ran into their arms as if it had been two months since we last saw each other. Full of adrenaline, we shared the memorable moments that we just lived.
Follow me on the road to our dream, and live the magical life of the Olympic games for the first time (and some for the second time.) The next blog should interest you -- on the road to glory will have details on the last preparation before the beginning of the competition and the excitement of the team getting prepared.