OPINION

Greeks gradually embrace Games

People want concrete results in order to be convinced. It was easy for us to grasp the benefits of the Games – namely the promotion and development of our country – but we were all fed up with the fancy words. However, the handover of several major infrastructure works during the last few months provoked a gradual change in attitude. Now, the majority of citizens can appreciate and enjoy that which they have been entitled to for many years – namely good, solid infrastructure. Now that it is evident that the improvement in our everyday lives has been a direct function of the Games’ preparation, it has become easier to accept the Olympics. And indeed everyone, or almost everyone, agrees that the Games have given our country a psychological lift. And citizens are right to feel proud about the distinct improvement in their living conditions. It is unfortunate, however, that we had to undertake the organization of the Games in order to improve respect toward citizens, for cities to be cleaned up and for essential works to be completed. Now, the large majority of Greeks are eagerly anticipating the launch of the Games – partly out of impatience to finally see the curtain rise on the much-awaited show, but also out of a desire to see their country hosting such a major international event – and with the hope that the results might erase some negative ideas about how the Greek system works.