30 years since the Olympic flame came on


This Monday It has been 30 years since the Olympic flame came to Empúries. June 13, 1992 the notes of an evocative sirtaki welcomed the local ‘goddess’ Marian as she disembarked the ship Icària onto the sands of Sant Martí d’Empúries beach.

The sacred fire, which had been lit eight days earlier in ancient Olympia, had reached its destination. It was 9:04 pm The torch of Barcelona 92, which resisted and overcame the signs of rain, the symbol of the illusion of the whole of Catalonia and Spain, was lifted between the weary steps.

The ‘Holy Thorn’ of the Clavé choirs echoed fervently in the ruins. More than one reception begins. A ritual feeling of twinning in the single portico that such a show can handle.

About 20,000 people witnessed the arrival of the fire and the actions that followedwhile a thousand boats remained motionless at sea.

A winged horse arose and Núria Espert and Irene Papas began to approach the papyrus containing their verses. Bandurrias rang and Cesc Gelabert danced in honor of Artemisa. The silence is polite and sepulchral.

In the main stand led by Jordi Pujol, President of the Generalitat, Javier Solana, Minister of Education, Pasqual Maragall, Mayor of Barcelona, and a broad representation of Catalan institutions. The public came from all over Catalonia, which exceeded the organization’s predictions.

The message arrived from Aung San Suu Kyi, 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner, sent from his exile from former Burma and delivered by his son Alexander. “May the Olympic flame be the triumph of the human condition,” he read. “Both on the athletic track and off of it, is when a man shows all his weaknesses. The most complete success is when a goal that must be fulfilled is generously addressed (….). Our world is separated still of ignorance, fear and everything that threatens human safety (…), warned the popular absentee.

‘El cant deIs ocells’ put the notes in the ensuing silence. Maragall, Pujol and Solana made their solemn speeches, just previously, at 10:00 pm, former Catalan athletes Carme Valero and Miquel Noguer held a torch from a pot. The two, holding a torch with one hand, conducted the first relay in the direction of L’Escala.

This is the beginning of the countdown to the event that will change the lives of several generations. On July 25, the Olympic torch arrived at the Montjuïc stadium to be shot by Antonio Rebollo towards the pot, in one of the most iconic pictures in the history of Spanish sports. The rest is history.

Source: La Verdad


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