Unofficial Games Maker reporting for duty!
I’m back in London after being away for much of the summer, one way or another. I ventured into town and, as I have to pass through Stratford, I enviably get immersed in Olympic traffic; conspicuous pink and maroon Olympic shirts everywhere.
There is still a bit of a buzz; directions to give, excited children to observe, and the sun is out; not the usual drudgery of commuting. (As I tend to wear a business suit, I often get asked for information, which is the same hazard as going to a local supermarket: everyone assumes you’re the manager!)
Just the other day, I aided a couple hopelessly overloaded with children and coffee cups as they cleaned a spillage on the train. (Come to think of it, when do people clean up on a train normally?). I offered help to someone unwell in the street, and dispensed tips on taking children to the Olympic park to a family as we shared a carriage. I’m not saying I’m special; I just think that I too am a Games Maker! (I quite fancy the outfit as well!)
Of course, many of us are wont to do these things in the normal run of life, but the Olympics seems to give us more permission. David Cameron could smugly conclude that Big Society is alive and well, if somewhat undercover. These spontaneous acts of kindness are, I think, a good measure of a better society. In fact, this observation forms a chapter in our booklet on faith and Big Society, ‘How to eat an elephant’.
So, maybe the legacy of the 2012 Games will be that the Tube travel is more humane?