Some athletes at the Beijing Winter Olympics were advised to stay away from the Opening Ceremony out of concern for potential positive COVID tests. Instead, they put together a Parade of Nations of their own.
Staying in the Yanging District outside of Beijing, some skeleton sliders chose to adhere to the advice and stay put while hundreds of their fellow Olympians marched with their countrymen.
Nicole Silveira of Brazil was part of the Parade and shared this video of the event:
“Who says you can’t host your own opening ceremonies in the village?” Silveira said on Instagram. “Due to covid precautions, we were advised to stay back. Making the best of all situations!”
Unfortunately, Silveira couldn’t enjoy even this alternative Opening Ceremony with her sliding girlfriend, Kim Meylemans. The Belgian “Lil Kim” has been forced into isolation due to China’s response to COVID and a mixture of test results for Meylemans.
Given Meylemans’ experiences, you can understand why some athletes chose to follow the advice of some organizers.
Joining Silveira was American athlete Andrew Blaser, who earlier this week posted about crying when he first touched the Olympic rings at the sliding center.
“This was the moment that it hit me,” Blaser wrote. “I cried when I touched these rings. To see them in the ice and know how and why I am here. It was a brilliant moment.”
Other flags seen carried in the parade were Ukraine and Canada.
While it must suck to be told you shouldn’t march in the Opening Ceremony, the athletes seem to be in good spirits. Hopefully they’re allowed to stay and participate in the Closing Ceremony in two weeks.