Saturday, July 10, 2010
The Consolation Gold
"Sorry, pardon me, which country?"
"Sautrey, Sauntrey......ya....it is Sauntrey."
"Saun.....trey.....and which continent?"
"Africa, Its Sauntrey's first Olympic. We all are so excited."
Sauntrey, a small state came into existence for the refugees of civil war of several African countries, an initiative taken by a world peace keeping organization. This was Sauntrey's first appearance in Olympics. A group of 15 athletes was participating in the selected sports (with ordinary qualifying standards or introductory sports).They were traveling from Sauntrey to Los Angeles, U.S.A., via Aero plane, this journey was in the destiny of few lucky Sauntrians. Along with them there was a group of 12 Supporting Staff and Reporters.
First international exposure of these 27 people......conversing in Handy English with others and in 'Sauntri' among themselves. Even Sauntri was a mixture of various African languages.
Sports Village, Los Angeles, especially prepared for the athletes of all the participating countries was their destination. Aero plane with Sauntrian and few other African Teams reached Los Angeles. All the Sauntrian athletes and officials were in their official national dress and talking to everyone with a sense of pride, but they were quite upset when someone in Press Conference called their dress "Trendy Swimwear".
Sauntrey's 3 Media personnel were with almost no equipments and were reporting back home via telephone. Their daily reports included various people with different countries, traditions, cultures, etc encountered, description of sports village, facilities provided by the organizing authorities, as if they were teasing their fellow nationals back home.
Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games was mind blowing as always.
Sauntrey's march was scheduled after China. Even Supporting Staff of China was far more than whole team of Sauntrey. They all marched in front of the "whole world" and their "Trendy Swimwear" was the only thing distinguishing them from the great Chinese army.
First event in which Sautrey participated was Tennis (Women's Doubles Category). The duration of the Match was 20 minutes and was in favour of opposing team (6-0, 6-0). This result was expected by all present there except 27 people.
In the next event which was Long Jump, jump of Sauntrian Long Jumper was scheduled last (formality)........who finished last with the best effort of 1.99 meters.
In 100 Meters Race, Sauntrian runner broke the world record.........by completing the race in 39.99 seconds, longest duration taken by any athlete in any international event to cover 100 meters.
In Pole vault, Sauntrian athlete was unable to clear the marked height in his first two attempts, in his third attempt he banged his jaw in the clearance bar.
Sauntrian Reporters failed to cover the Boxing Match featuring their Boxer because they reached 2 minutes late after the start of the match which ended in a historic first punch knockout. The Sauntrian Boxer was still unconscious to express his views about his "teeth tickling" defeat.
Last event in which Sauntrey was represented was Swimming. Sauntrian Swimmer with nothing to lose, misbalanced during his initial jump was hurt and was admitted (...to hospital) beside Pole Vaulter and Boxer of Sauntrey.
There was a "pin drop" silence in the Sauntrain Camp. No one was enthusiastic as they were on their arrival. They lost in every event in which they participated in initial stages.
To add to their misery media of other countries was flashing and serving their performance for laughter and entertainment of their viewers.
One Reporter commented ->
"Stats are encouraging but Pole-vaulter, Swimmer and Boxer of Sauntrian team may face problems and tough interrogation when they will return to Sauntrey from U.S.A., because after competitions their faces are quite different from their photos in their passports and visas."
During the Closing Ceremony the Sauntrian Team quietly marched in their traditional dress. They all were thinking that the news of their performance was a means of laughter for others......infact the whole world. Back in the camp they all were very sad due to the insult of their country which was caused by their below ordinary performance.
No one wanted to attend the press conference, at last one athlete of 400 meters, who was second last in his race and whose performance was best from Sauntrey attended the Press Conference. Reporters were taunting and commenting from every where. The name of the daring person facing press conference was Mr. Bham Bhokda.
Everybody in the Sauntrian Camp was keenly watching him, they all were praying.
Temper of Mr. Bham Bhokda raised when someone asked him that "Why are such Countries dishonoring these prestigious games?”
"Shut up.....I said shut up.....enough is enough," blasted Bham Bhokda.
Now there was an unbroken silence among reporters. Even the Cameras covering some other reports turned towards him as if they were ready to fire.
Full of tears and emotions Bham Bhokda continued.
"Olympic Games are unfair to us, There is cheating everywhere."
One Reporter interrupted
"Hey, Hey.....You are breaking the Code of Conduct. Every move in Olympics is covered by several cameras and officials......confirmed by referees and umpires. Well, by the way your sense of humor is same as your performance."
Bham Bhokda replied,
"Thank you, by the way, I told you to shut up. Yes everything is watched by authorities, but nobody is able to see the harsh truth and reality behind these standings and results. We lost in every sport which was thoroughly covered.....thanks to you people again.
But what should be covered is that almost all the people in our country are not even aware about the existence of such events. Sauntrey....where people are struggling for basic necessities you expect us to compete and do well at this level. We are competing with those who are living a far better life than us and are professionals. I am a vegetable vendor and I started practice three months earlier for this event without quitting my business.
Yes, Sauntrey and all other underdeveloped nations apologize to you all that we are not lucky enough to have facilities like your countries in not only sports but also in every sphere of life. We were overwhelmed that we reached this far and at least we are marking the presence of Sauntrey, without knowing the ground realities. I and my whole team announce our retirement after our first international event. Now, we all will indulge in the development of our nation and I promise you that coming generations of Sauntrey will lead in every aspect...including sports, Thanks again."
Mr. Bham Bhokda left the Press Conference, reporters were still silence and were gathering words in their defense. Some lucky reporters who were not working on the Live Reports edited a considerable portion of Bham Bhokda's speech.
The Sautrian Camp was full of tears, Sauntrians were consoling each other. But the sense of pride resumed automatically in them after listening to Mr. Bham Bhokda's reply. Reporters were also reporting Mr. Bham Bhokda's statements to increase their T.R.P. ratings....and goodwill.
Mr. Bham Bhokda made this Olympic historical and memorable because Sauntrey Team returned to their Country with a review team to access the conditions of Sauntrey. Later an Headquarter of International Sports Development Authority (S.D.A.), was initiated in Sauntrey with its branches in all Underdeveloped and developing countries to find the raw talent and train them in different sports.
A list of all such 'unprivileged' Countries was prepared according to different international measures and many developed countries started to help in the development of listed countries. Sauntrey, with its other counterparts is heading towards a better and secure future. Mr. Bham Bhokda is the head of S.D.A. and is also training his daughter with a dream to make her an Olympic Champion one day.